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Come celebrate TORCH’s Bar Mitzvah year at the NEW Bayou City Event Center
Jewish Herald Voice | Sep 15, 2011

TORCH (Torah Outreach Resource Center of Houston) is excited to celebrate it’s 13th year of providing outreach education to the Houston Jewish community. TORCH was founded in 1998 and has since served thousands of Houstonians as the most engaging resource for learning and connection through its unique non-judgmental approach to Jewish education. The Gala dinner will take place on Sunday, November 20, 2011 at 6pm at the NEW Bayou City Event Center.

Heading up the event is Lori Rubin. The newly expanded Board of Directors at TORCH has taken a proactive step in hiring Rubin as the organization's first Director of Development . "Lori is a proven community leader and go-getter with a tremendous breadth in her involvement in Jewish Houston. We are very fortunate that she will be stewarding TORCH's fundraising activities." says Etan Mirwis, Board President.

Rubin has done fundraising for 19 years in various capacities through several community organizations including ORT, Hadassah and Congregation Brith Shalom. She has also been a member of the Brith Shalom choir for 23 years and is a recipient of the Marcia Sheena Memorial Torah Fund Award. Her versatile career backgound includes Special Education Teacher, School Counselor, Psychotherapist and Sales Manager for a children’s educational organization. Education and helping others are her passion. Combining this with helping the Jewish community brings her passions to fruition. Having been a student of Rabbi Wolbe’s Mussar class for the last 2 years at Congregation Brith Shalom, it was a natural transition to become part of the TORCH team. “I’m concerned about the future of our people and I realize that what connects us is substantive Jewish learning. TORCH provides so many opportunities to learn. There’s something for everyone. The cost for classes is extremely low to make sure that everyone has the opportunity to participate and I plan to find the funds to make TORCH classes more available to even a broader spectrum of Jews around the Houston area”, says Lori.

As TORCH continues to expand its daily learning opportunities for the community their development is more limited and this move should lighten their schedule to focus on what they love most; teaching. Some examples of the incredible classes that depict their modern day connection are “Jersey Shore and Jewish Values” (a Young Adult Program), “You Had Me at Challah” (a Challah workshop for Women), “Sushi in the Sukkah” (a singles event) and “If you can’t read this, you need classes” - a legendary Hebrew reading series. Additionally, there are classes in Mussar (the study of ethics) and Talmud as well as one on one study with the Rabbis.

TORCH divisions include the Jewish Student Union (JSU) currently serving High School students from Nine local public schools, ASCENT - Women’s Division, TNT (Twenties and Thirties) for young adults, JEI (Jewish Ethics Institute) and the new Shalhevet congregational partnership program, already offering weekly classes in Nine partnering congregations.

TORCH’s mission is to Connect Jews and Judaism by providing meaningful learning opportunities for every Jewish individual in the Houston area irrespective of background, affiliation, denomination or level of observance and to enable them to experience the joy and vibrancy of Judaism in a welcoming environment.

To make your secured online dinner reservation, please visit www.torchdinner.org or www.torchweb.org. To make your reservation by phone, please call (713) 721-6400.

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