Newsmakers: February 2020

FIRST ROW, FROM LEFT: Rochelle Brandvein, Susan E. Block, Scott Berzon and Cary Mogerman. SECOND ROW: Phil Frischer, Merle Fischlowitz, David Bohm and Jeremy Brenner. 

Rochelle Brandvein, owner of Brandvein-Aaranson Public Relations, a 30-year-old PR agency, will now solely handle nonprofits and companies with a philanthropic arm or foundation.  Her company specializes in publicity, copywriting and creative services. Brandvein attends Congregation Shaare Emeth.

The St. Louis County Council has approved the appointment of retired Judge Susan E. Block, a lawyer with Paule, Camazine & Blumenthal, to serve on the St. Louis County Children’s Service Fund Board. County Executive Sam Page recommended Block to the  County Council for its approval. Block served as a circuit judge and administrative judge of the Family Court of St. Louis County. She is a member of the Missouri Supreme Court Commission on Racial and Ethnic Fairness and attends Central Reform Congregation.

Shaare Emeth welcomes Scott Berzon as its business operations director. For the past two years, he has served as executive director of the St. Louis Jewish Light. Prior to that, Berzon spent four years at the Jewish Community Center as the director of the St. Louis Jewish Book Festival 

Cary Mogerman, a shareholder of Carmody MacDonald P.C., has been installed as first vice president of the American Academy of Matrimonial Lawyers. In 2022, he will become the organization’s president. Mogerman, a member of Congregation Temple Israel, is one of only 100 diplomats of the American College of Family Trial Lawyers and Missouri’s only Fellow of the International Academy of Family Lawyers. 


Phil Frischer is president of the United Hebrew Congregation’s board of directors for a two-year term. He is the director of client strategy and team lead at Caravus, a health coverage firm.   

Retired psychologist Merle Fischlowitz has written his fifth book, titled “Oh the Changes I Have Seen!: My 84 Years of Memories.” It provides a description of the major technological changes that have affected the lives of many 20th century families. Fishlowitz examines how communications, transportation, computing, medicine and household technologies have swiftly evolved.  

The Jewish Council for Public Affairs has presented one of its four Tikkun Olam Awards to David Bohm. This award is given to those who are passionate for civic engagement and justice. Bohm, a lawyer and principal at Danna McKitrick P.C., has drafted bills that have been enacted as state statutes, including a suicide prevention and awareness bill requiring all school districts in Missouri to adopt a plan suitable for each district. He is a member of Shaare Emeth.

Jeremy Brenner has been named partner with the Armstrong Teasdale law firm. Based in St. Louis, he is an employment lawyer and co-leader of the firm’s national wage and hour/Fair Labor Standards Act practice. He is on the firm’s Inclusion Committee, and he is a member of Kol Rinah.

Samuel Manlin was recently named the 2019 recipient of the Ida Stack Award at Shaare Emeth’s religious school. The award was established in 1997 and is given annually to an incoming sixth-grader who has demonstrated dedication and enthusiasm for Jewish learning. Sam is the son of Mark and Beth Manlin and is a sixth grade student at Ladue Middle School.

United Hebrew Chai Society will honor Naomi Barasch, Michael Klein, Paul Kravitz, Linda Kusmer and Stacey Prelutsky at its April 25 Peace, Love, Rock & Roll celebration at the congregation. They are being recognized for their contributions to the life (chai) of the congregation. Barash is a clinical pharmacist specialist at Missouri Baptist Medical Center, Klein is a retired CPA and Kravitz is on the faculty at Maryville University. Kusmer is the founder and president of Total Interior Designs. Prelutsky is a preschool teacher with United Hebrew’s Saul Spielberg Early Childhood Center. 

Granite City native Peter Maer will be one of 14 honorees inducted into the St. Louis Media Hall of Fame on March 21 at the Last Hotel. Maer covered the White House for more than 30 years for the CBS and NBC/Mutual radio networks. 

Solomon Turner Multimedia Public Relations is celebrating its 30th year in business. The firm was founded in 1990 and continues to operate under the leadership of founding partners Shelly Solomon and Steve Turner. Solomon Turner PR provides strategic planning, program management, publicity, social media, special events and video marketing.

Anti-Defamation League Heartland welcomes Jennifer Schwesig as chair of the regional advisory board for a three-year term. A partner with Armstrong Teasdale LLP, she leads the firm’s International Practice Group. Schwesig attends Shaare Emeth. Tabari Coleman, former director of education for ADL Heartland, is moving up to become director of professional development with the national education division. He will continue to work in the St. Louis office.

Bob Elfanbaum is the new CEO at Object Computing Inc., a full-service software engineering company dedicated to providing innovative solutions and support for the development of distributed object-oriented applications. Prior to joining OCI, he served as vice president of products at World Wide Technology. Elfanbaum attends United Hebrew Congregation.

Elizabeth J. Schlesinger is one of 10 lawyers internationally to be promoted to counsel at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner. She is a member of the firm’s Private Client Group where her practice involves estate planning and administration with a focus on wealth transfer tax planning. Schlesinger is a member of United Hebrew Congregation.

Circus Harmony artistic/executive director Jessica Hentoff was in Monte Carlo recently at the invitation of Zsuzsanna Mata, the head of the World Circus Federation (WCF), to be part of the creation of a Global Alliance of Circus Schools. Hentoff was also recently named as the recipient of the 2020 Youth Development Practitioner Award by the Youth Learning Institute. She will receive this award during the US Play Coalition’s 2020 Conference on the Value of Play at Clemson University in South Carolina, March 29 to April 1.