At the beginning of this year, Rabbi Ben David, formerly of Adath Emanu-el, nominated high school congregant Kyle Ostrovsky for the JCF's Benjamin Asbell Youth Upsilon Lambda Phi Fraternity Award.
The aim of the Asbell Award is to "recognize a Jewish boy or girl of high school age who is a member of a congregation or other Jewish institutional youth group and who demonstrates exemplary leadership, serves as a role model and impacts the community in a way that strengthens the Jewish identification of his or her peers."
Fast forward a few months, and the JCF's Scholarship Committee approved Kyle as an Asbell Awardee; now he will be able to utilize his financial award toward youth group activities, conferences, summer camp, or a trip to Israel.
But let's next rewind to the 1990s, with a compelling, multi-generational story from Kyle's mother, Dana Ostrovsky (nee Frank; pictured with Kyle).
After the award was announced, Dana notified the JCF and shared the following message (lightly edited for clarity and brevity):
"I was the recipient of a Benjamin Asbell Award that helped me pay for law school so it is particularly exciting and special for our family to learn that Kyle received this accolade...
"As a further point of 'irony,' I worked with Benjamin’s granddaughter, Stacy, for two years at Blank Rome in the Cherry Hill office right after I graduated law school. Of course, I let her know right away when we met that I had received her grandfather’s award, which she enjoyed hearing; and I always felt a sort of “kinship” with her as a result, which was a nice feeling for a young lawyer just starting out.
"...It is quite a special coincidence (for me) that Kyle won this award."
While the award that Dana received was likely the precursor to the endowment fund award that was later established with the JCF and that Kyle received, this is still indeed a special coincidence, and the JCF is proud to play some small part in enhancing this family's lives and helping our local Jewish community.
Mazel tov to Kyle (and a few years belatedly to Dana!) and to the 22 other recipients who received financial awards from the JCF this year. We look forward to another successful awards cycle in 2023. To that end, the JCF Scholarship Awards application will be open by mid-December this year, but in the meantime, more information can be found on our awards webpage.