Home > Adventures in SD History, Canada > Adventures in San Diego Jewish History, December 24, 1954, Part 1

Adventures in San Diego Jewish History, December 24, 1954, Part 1

Compiled by San Diego Jewish World staff

Morton Thaler Assumes Beth Jacob Presidency
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 1

Morton Thaler

Beth Jacob Congregation has elected Morton Thaler as its new president for 1955.  Mr. Thaler, long active in synagogue and community activities, will be installed in an impressive ceremony to be conducted by Morris W. Douglas, prominent civic leader  this Sunday evening at Beth Jacob Synagogue at 7 p.m.  Elected to serve with the new President are the following: Vice Presidents, Dr. Walter Ornstein, Alvin Garber, Phillip Mollick; Financial Secretary, Max Leopold; Corresponding Secretary, Paul Schraer; Treasurer, Simon Glaser; Guardian, Sidney Ulansky; Gabbai, Israel Lebb. Board members include William Penn, Bernard Arenson, Zel Camiel, Norman Gelman, Tom Garber, Louis Thomas, Jerry Weiman, Julius Penn, Thomas Vetter, Dr. Harry Brookler, Morris Penn, Harry Evans, William Schusterman, Allan Lame, Max Popik, Joseph Kaplan, Ed Herman, Max Okum, Jack Brisker, David Schissell, David Hurwitz, Kurt Sax.  Past President on the board include Chas. Press and Morrie Kraus.  Honorary President for the Congregation is Abe Abramson.

A very delightful installation banquet will be served to guests, with a cocktail hour preceding the festivities at 6 p.m.

David Schissell, General Chairman, has issued a cordial invitation to the entire community to attend this event and reservations may be made with Mrs. Schissell at Juniper 2-0161 or Mr. Thaler, Atwater 1-3275.  Charge for the dinner and cocktail party will be kept to $3,00 per person. 

In celebration of the closing of Chanukah holiday a musical program will be offered.

United Jewish Fund to Elect Officers
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 1

Election of officers for the United Jewish Fund will be held on Thursday, Jan 13, 1955, San Diego Hotel State Ballroom, according to Louis Moorsteen, president of the fund.

The present officers are Moorsteen; Morris Douglas; Milton Roberts and Al Steinbaum, vice presidents; Harry Snyder, treasurer; Manuel S. Fisher, secretary; Members of the Executive Committee for 1954 are Mrs. Gabriel Berg, David Block, Mack Esterson, Carl Esenoff, Rodin Horrow, Sol Price, Harry Wax.

Newly elected members of the Board of Directors of the United Jewish Fund elected an the annual meeting are Mrs.Ted Brav, Mrs. Dora Friedman, Irving Friedman, Arthur Goodman, Ben Harris, Maury Novak, Mrs. Abe Ratner, David Sapp, and Harry Sugarman.

Jewish Center Sets Jan. 8 For Big Dinner
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 1

The “Make A Dream Come True” dinner on Saturday, Jan. 8 will open the Jewish Community Center Building drive to the entire community, Rodin Horrow, chairman of the dinner committee announced this week.

To be held at the Don Room of the El Cortez the meeting at 6:30 p.m. will give San Diego Jewry an opportunity to participate in erecting a glorious monument to Judaism in our community.

Edward Breitbard, president of the center in joining Horrow in the announcement said, “The community is now convinced that the directors of the Jewish Community Center mean business and want to see a community building erected in the next year or so for our children, ourselves and our neighbors.”

“51 individuals,” he continued, “have contributed close to $80,000.  These are board members. Now we are asking all to voluntarily participate by attending the dinner.”

Mr. Robert Levison, San Francisco Insurance executive, and National Vice President of the Jewish Welfare Board, will be the principal speaker.  He is well qualified to speak on the center movement and the need for centers, having been president of the San Francisco Jewish Community Center, and at the present time is vice-president of the Jewish Welfare Board.

According to Breitbard, San Diego, a community of over 6,000 Jews, is one of the only cities in the U.S. which does not have a Jewish Community building or a center for its people.

Jewish Federation Plans 1st Annual Dinner Jan. 19
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 1

Carl Esenoff

San Diego’s Jewish Welfare Agencies will meet in a joint annual meeting under the auspices of the Federation of Jewish Agencies on Wed., Jan 19, 1955, according to Carl Esenoff, Pres.

The dinner meeting in the State Ballroom of the San Diego Hotel at 6:00 p.m. will mark the first annual event of the Federation and the first joint meeting of all the agencies, which include the Jewish Social Service Agency, the Hebrew Home for the Aged, the Community Relations Council, the Jewish Community Center and the United Jewish Fund.

The theme of the meeting as announced by Harry Mallen, chairman of the annual meeting committee will be “Total Community Planning.”  Julius Bisno, Executive Director of the Los Angeles Community Council and Executive Secretary of the Jewish Welfare Fund of Los Angeles, will be the principal speaker.

Several of the agencies, according to Mallen will elect their Board of Directors that evening. Each agency will display its work to the community.

Members of the Jewish community and board members of the various agencies are urged to place the date Wednesday, Jan 19 on their calendar and to make every effort to be present. Reservations may be made at the Federations office BE 2-5172.

Please Take Note
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 1

Attention to all members of the United Jewish Fund is called to the fact that in order to get income tax deductions for charitable contributions, payments of pledges must be made on or before Dec. 31, 1954.

In making this announcement Harry Snyder, treasure of the United Jewish Fund also urged that payments be made now since the fund needs cash in order to meet commitments made during the year 1954.

Payments should be sent to the office of the United Jewish Fund, 333 Plaza, San Diego 1, California.

New Subscribers
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 1

Urban League of S.D.
Max Zemen
Nicholas Elbogen
Mrs. H.M. Horn
Samuel N. Hecsh


Iris Leeds Wed Charles Strauss in Double-Ring Rites

Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

Iris Lynn Leeds, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Fred S. Leeds, was wed to Matthew Charles Strauss, son of Mr. and Mrs. Bert Strauss, in a double-ring ceremony at Temple Beth Israel on December 19, at 5:30 p.m.  Rabbi Morton J. Cohn performed the marriage rites with music by Cantor Julian Miller.

The bride’s candelight satin period gown featured alencon lace set into diamonds on the skirt from which pleated nylon tulle fell into a sweeping train. The portrait neckline and the pointed bodice were edged in lace. Her elongated fingertip illusion veil fell from a hand jeweled tiara.  She carried a prayer book to which was attached a giant white orchid, white roses and stephanotis.

Maid of honor, Andrea Leeds, and matron of honor, Norma Dreifuss, were gowned in pale pink tulle with wine velvet hats, shrugs, and mitts. Bridesmaids Arlene Mihlman, Margie Goodman and Eileen Rivers wore aqua tulle with turquoise velvet hats mitts and shrugs.  Marsha Starr, in aqua velvet, was junior bridesmaid.

Werner Dreifuss was best man and ushers were Ira Shames, Dan Weinberg and Lawrence Strauss.

A dinner dance for 250 guests was held immediately following the ceremony at the Mission Valley Country Club.  Mrs. Leeds received in sequin embroidered satin with full skirted overdress of toast colored Chantilly lace. Mrs. Strauss, the groom’s mother, wore pink poie de sole.

After a week’s honeymoon in Palm Springs and Las Vegas, the young couple will make their home in San Diego.

Out of town guests were Mr. and MRs. Milton Leeds of Highland Park, Ill., aunt and uncle of the bride and Mr. and Mrs. Sid Stackler of Highland Park, aunt and uncle of the groom.

Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

We hope the new Jewish Center will build good handball courts. We have a championship team all ready.  Bill and Dave Starr just copped the doubles crown at the S.D. Rowing Club.

Did you catch the item about our swimming champs, too?  Mission Valley Country Club has good prospects in Linda Press, Larry Cantor and Andy Beck.

In honor of Barbara Shames forthcoming marriage to Manny Barney of Los Angeles, Mrs. Jerry Krakoff (Brodman) entertained Barbara with a miscellaneous shower on December 11.

Flying to New York for the holidays are Sam and Bea Cohen and Irwin and Eleanor Kahn. They will spend two weeks in the east seeing the sights and shows in New York and visit with relatives.

Mr. and Mrs. Paul Belkin celebrated Chanukah with an Open House for friends on Sunday, Dec. 19th. For those unable to attend, they are extending an invitation to visit them anytime during the holidays.

Lawrence Schiller, Pepperdine freshman, was announced winner of the 1954 U.S. Camera Photo Contest last week.  He was ranked, for the second year, as the number one photographer in the United States under 25 years of age and 187 in the world against all photographers.

Lawrence is attending Pepperdine on a four-year full-tuition scholarship earned throughhis photographic work.  He became a professional at the age of sixteen and has been a consistent top honor winner in national and international contests ever since.
Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Lawrence Cohen, of Coronado, have recently returned home from a two and one-half months trip to 16 nations on four continents.  Like all returning travelers they are full of their recent experiences and ready to share them. Mrs. Cohen says that “There is no place like Southern California.” The Cohens were particularly impressed with Israel. They heartily recommend the deluxe Mediterranean cruise which gave them so much pleasure.


Dick and Jane Lustig got off to a flying start with their family on December 24th, when they headed East. They will join a large family group at Wooster, Mass., in celebration of the 75th birthday of Jane’s father.

Venis-Rimland Vows Told
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

Mr. and Mrs. Meyer Rimland of San Deigo announce the marriage, on November 25th, of their daughter, Rose, to Matin Allen Venis, son of MRs. Edith Venis and the late Meyer Venis of Toronto, Canada.

The wedding took place at the Synagogue Mogen David in L.A. with Rabbi Abram Maron officiating.

Rose is an honor graduate of S.D. State College and has a M.A. degree in business education.  Martin is stationed with the Air Force in San Diego.  The young couple will reside here.

On December 19th an Open House was held at the Rimland home in honor of the newlyweds.

Council Sets Valentine Ball
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

National Council of Jewish Women has scheduled its Valentine Ball for Saturday evening, February 12, at the Mission Valley Country Club.  Tickets will be available after the first of the year.


Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

8 little candles sitting in a row
Telling the story of the Macabees’ woe
Then wishing a happy Chanukah to you.
Especially from yours truly, Janet and Sue.

“It was a wonderful party,” said Adrian Sachnoff, Sandy Ratner, Jan Klaskin, Joan Breitbard, Ed Ruskin, Andy Leeds, Gordon Levitt, Susan Solof, Gary Cantor, Sharlene Stone, Herb Wenig, Sigmund Urbach, Janet Sheldon Golden, Zena Feurseig, Bob Myers, Robert Wylogue, Stan Breitbard, Judy Aved, Roger Brenes, Debbie Strauss, Linda Douglas, Seymour Pomeranz, and Larry Ratner, of the affair given by Harry Ratner at the San Diego Club with dinner and dancing and a fabulous evening.

All bedecked with corsages, the girls sat around the beautifully decorated table waiting anxiously for the arrival of Henrietta Faguet who was a mighty surprised girl. The scene was the Mission Valley Country Club and the hostesses were Jan Klaskin and Barbara Silverman.

Scoop: Hanukah vacation is a time for us “Kosher Kids” to make some green “lettuce.”  Those filling their pockets are : Rocky Goodrich, Sharlene Stone, LuAnn Blumbereg, Dan Weinberg, Bob Beck, Donn Kobernick, Sheldon Golden, Janet and Susan Solof, Jane Cohn and Sherry Newman.

Bye now.

(Departure time)
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

No man goes before his time – unless the boss has left early.



Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2


Sun., 26th Poale Zion Chanukah Party – Tifereth Israel Center – 8:00 p.m.

Sun., 26th – Beth Jacob Installation, 7 p.m.


Weds, 5th – Israeli Delegate, Speaker at S.D. Chapter, A.A. U.N., 8 p.m., Florence School

Sat, 8th –“Make A Dream Come True” Dinner, J.C.C., Don Room, El Cortez, 6:30 p.m.

Sun, 9th – Lasker Lodge Installation, Dinner-Dance, Mission Valley Country Club.

Thurs, 13th – Election of Officers – United Jewish Fund, State Ballroom, S.D. Hotel, 6:30 p.m.

Wed., 19th – Annual Meeting S.D. Jewish Welfare Agencies, 6:00 p.m., State Ballroom, San Diego Hotel

Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

Women Wanted – Make extra money. Address, mail postcards, spare time every week.  BICO, 143 Belmont, Belmont, Mass.

Man Available – For gardening…Trucking Service … Pick-Up and Delivery… Call after 5 p.m. BE -9-2780

Nursery School
Southwestern Jewish Press, December 24, 1954, Page 2

Jean Fry, Director of the Cooperative Nursery School of the Jewish Community, will conduct an orientation meeting Monday, Dec. 27, at 8:00 p.m. at the home of Mrs. Seymour Gates of 2440 Meade Street.

The dynamics and techniques of child care will be discussed.  A typical nursery school day schedule will be examined for the purpose of understanding the aims of each activity, and knowing the role each mother is expect to play.

After the question and answer period, refreshments will be served.

“Adventures in San Diego Jewish History” is sponsored by Inland Industries Group LP in memory of long-time San Diego Jewish community leader Marie (Mrs. Gabriel) Berg. Our “Adventures in San Diego Jewish History” series will be a regular feature until we run out of history.  To find stories on specific individuals or organizations, type their names in our search box.  


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  1. March 5, 2012 at 10:28 am

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