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Event at Capitol marks Jewish American heritage

Jewish Standard's coverage of the Jewish Heritage Capitol Hill Tribute 2013

In 2006, Congress designated Jewish Heritage Month to celebrate the talents and contributions of the American Jewish community to American society. Last month, Friedlander Group of New York hosted a congressional tribute to distinguished Jewish Americans and a celebration of Jewish American heritage, at a kosher luncheon in the U.S. Capitol.

The celebration began with honoree Allen Rothenberg singing the national anthem. Rothenberg, an attorney,founded a firm that has branches in Hackensack and other New Jersey towns and offices across the nation. He has been the national president of COLPA,the National Jewish Commission on Lawand Public Affairs. In his speech, his senator, Bob Casey (D-Pa.), highlighted Rothenberg’s dedication to the fight for religious freedom.

Greg Rosenbaum, co-chair of the Jewish American Heritage Month Foundation, introduced Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), who quoted Rabbi

Abraham Joshua Heschel: “What begins as inequality of some inevitably ends as inequality of all,” and highlighted his quest for economic justice based on Jewish teachings.

Senator Brown introduced another honoree, Daniel E. Kestenbaum of Bergenfield, the founding director of Kestenbaum & Company, a New YorkCity-based boutique auction house that sells Judaic historical artifacts.

Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D-Fla.) presented an award to Ohel supporters Harvey and Gloria Kaylie.Since 1969, Ohel has been helping people of all ages surmount everyday challenges,heal from trauma, and manage with strength and dignity during times of crises. It provides foster care, housing,outpatient counseling and day programs. Driven by a shared vision to break down stigma in the community, the Kaylies provided the seed capital for Ohel toopen the ground-breaking Camp Kaylie at Ohel — the first-of-its-kind integrated summer camp for kids of all abilities.