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Simchat Torah Chatanim 2017

Friday, October 13, 2017 • 23 Tishrei 5778

8:00 AM - 12:45 PM

Ths year, on Simchat Torah, we are honoring Josh Klavan as Chatan Bereishit and Yakov Eizik as Kol ha-Ne’arim. The shul will bestow upon Rabbi Rothwachs the kibbud of Chatan Torah for all the many things he continues to do on behalf of our shul to allow us, as a kehilla, to grow in Torah, Avodah, and Gemilut Chasadim.

Why was Josh Klavan selected as our Chatan Bereishit this year? As our President, Isaac Hagler, explained, “Josh is a humble person who continues to do so much for the shul. Josh is the type of person who will always say ‘yes’ to what is asked of him; he understands the needs of the tzibbur and is committed to our shul in every way possible. This kibbud shows hakarat ha-tov to Josh for everything that he does on behalf of our kehillah.”

Having lived in Teaneck practically his entire life (he grew up on the other side of town), Josh and his wife Esther, joined our shul over 15 years ago. Soon after, Josh joined the shul Board and was a member of the shul’s UJA Synagogue Leadership Initiative Committee. He since has served as the shul’s Treasurer for two years and is currently in his fourth year as the shul’s Vice President of Finance. From davening from the amud on the Yamim Noraim the past 11 years, to being part of the rotation for giving the Shabbat Daf Yomi shiur for the last two learning cycles, to securing a designated section for our shul in the Eretz Hachaim cemetery in Israel, and currently leading our lobby advertising initiative, Josh is quick to give his time and talents for whatever is needed from him by the shul.

Josh, together with his wife, Esther, and several other members of our shul, founded Shearit HaPlate of Bergen County, Inc. (SHP), in 2006. SHP is a non-profit organization dedicated to minimizing the waste of kosher food within our community and to distributing that food to those in need, usually within twenty-four hours. SHP collects, repackages, and distributes surplus kosher food to individuals and families within Teaneck and the surrounding communities in a respectful way that helps ensure the recipients' privacy and self-esteem. Josh has served as President of SHP since 2009: Josh and many other volunteers from our shul and others within the Teaneck and Bergenfield communities have been responsible for the rescue and distribution of thousands of pounds of food a year.

Josh is also a partner in the public accounting firm PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC), delivering audit services for the last nineteen years by working together with clients in the asset management industry and providing guidance and perspectives on their accounting and operational policies/procedures. Josh is a licensed CPA in both New York and New Jersey, having received his bachelor’s degree in accounting from the Sy Syms School of Business of Yeshiva University.

Josh and Esther, who is the Director of SINAI’s Karasick Shalem High School at TABC, have four children, Izzy, Moshe, Aura, and Rina, who continue to enjoy the unique opportunity to grow up near all of their grandparents and daven in our shul with their Bubby and Zaida Yablok. In his spare time, Josh enjoys learning, genealogy, and spending time with his family.

“As the Vice President of Finance over the past several years, he has guided me, the Executive Board, and the full Board in areas in which the shul can improve itself,” Isaac Hagler noted. “As a partner at PwC and as a CPA, he has been able to provide an analysis on each revenue and expense item, which has helped in paying down the debt incurred since we expanded our building a number of years back. Most recently, Josh spearheaded an initiative to further increase advertising revenue for the shul, from which we know the shul will benefit.

“For a number of years, Josh has been a shaliach tzibbur during the Yamim Noraim, both on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, alternating between minyanim. I have been davening in the Beit Midrash minyan for at least seven years, and I have benefited from Josh’s uplifting davening. We are proud to recognize Josh’s commitment to our shul with this kibbud.”


Yakov Eizik, this year’s Chatan Kol ha-Ne’arim, and his wife Toby have been members of Congregation Beth Aaron for 41 years, joining just a few years after the shul was established. “And,” he said, “I have been active in the shul ever since then.” There is a long list of committees on which he has served and functions he has carried out, which include membership on the House Committee, the Kitchen Committee, and the Security Committee, as well as arranging the seating for Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur one year. For many years, he has been concerned with the safety and security of the shul and also has been active in the shul’s Chevra Kadisha.

A member of the Teaneck Volunteer Ambulance Corps for 34 years, Yakov also ensures the shul’s emergency equipment is well stocked and ready if needed

It’s altogether fitting that he has been selected for this kibbud. For the past two years, Toby has been working with Ellen Friedman, the designer of the shul’s new Kol ha-Ne’arim chuppah, and using her embroidery skills to add the names of children and grandchildren to this beautiful chuppah, which enhances our Simchat Torah celebrations.

“I feel humbled to have been selected for this kibbud,” Yakov said, “and was surprised to be selected for this important honor. Before I accepted it, I talked for quite a while to Toby, who finally convinced me that I deserved it.”

“Yakov was selected because he continues to do so many things for the shul, with all of Beth Aaron benefitting,” according to shul President Isaac Hagler. “Yakov is a great ba’al chesed, but he is so humble and never would see what he does as a chesed; rather, he views what he does as a necessity that someone must do.

Yakov is now a mashgiach for local stores and caterers. He previously worked as a business analyst for website development. Yakov and Toby have two married children (Tamar and Josh in Chicago, and Eli and Selena in Tenafly), a single daughter, (Naomi, also in Chicago), and four wonderful grandchildren.


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Mon, September 24 2018 15 Tishrei 5779