A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.

St. Louis Jewish Light

Picture books for little kids link learning with Jewish ideals

Picture books for little kids link learning with Jewish ideals

ELLEN FUTTERMAN, Editor-in-Chief February 23, 2022

They say necessity is the mother of invention. Boy, was that ever the case for St. Louis native Sarah Hirsch Maddali. After she and her husband had two children, now ages 3 and 6, Maddali grew frustrated that she couldn’t find age-appropriate...

Photo of author Dean Robbins with book cover image

St. Louis native returns for the J’s Children’s Mitzvah Program

BILL MOTCHAN, Special to the Jewish Light February 20, 2022

Dean Robbins fondly remembers growing up in St. Louis and playing softball at the Jewish Community Center. When he was rounding the bases, “I was thinking about Jackie Robinson, Babe Ruth, Lou Brock and all the great Cardinal stars in the late ’60s.” He...

Native St. Louisan looks back on 20+ years in Jerusalem

Native St. Louisan looks back on 20+ years in Jerusalem

ELLEN FUTTERMAN, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF January 27, 2022

In 1998, native St. Louisan Leah Elbaum Hakimian and her husband, Yusef, left St. Louis for Israel, where they made aliyah and settled in Jerusalem. They had been living in Clayton and raising four daughters. The family was a member of B’rith Sholom...

Dr. Morris Hartstein treats a Palestinian girl from Gaza with a lymphatic malformation in one of her eyes. She received treatment in an Israeli hospital.  Courtesy of Hartstein

Learn how this St. Louis native heals eyes, changes lives in Ethiopia

BY ERIC BERGER, ASSOCIATE EDITOR March 2, 2021

Dr. Morris Hartstein has not only provided eye care for people in his former home (St. Louis) or his current home (Israel) but has also made 10 trips to Ethiopia, where he has treated residents who otherwise cannot afford care, trained Ethiopian ophthalmologists...

On Dec. 15, Jodi Sperling and St. Louis native Mitch Morgan became owners of Camp Kingswood in Bridgeton, Maine. Morgan attended the Js Camp Sabra throughout his childhood and teenage years and then worked as a counselor and eventually, assistant director.

Love of Jewish summer camp led St. Louis native to become camp co-owner

BY ERIC BERGER, ASSOCIATE EDITOR February 2, 2021

When Mitch Morgan was growing up in the Brentwood School District, he was one of two Jews.The other was his younger brother, Sean. “Kids would ask us if we were ‘Hanukkah,’” Morgan recalls and laughs.He met his first Jewish friend at the Jewish...

Members of the 1973-74 first-grade class at Old Bonhomme School gather to celebrate teacher Christine Williams’ retirement in 2005. John Green is second from left; Williams is in the middle.

Early teacher-student bond led to lifelong friendship

By Ellen Futterman, Editor-in-Chief December 30, 2020

If there ever was any doubt about the lasting impact a teacher can have on a student’s life, meet John R. Green. Today, the 53-year-old native St. Louisan is a 25-year veteran of ABC News in New York, where he currently serves as executive producer...

Jacob Siwak, who grew up attending Central Reform Congregation, has opened a restaurant, Forsythia, in New York’s Lower East Side. 

Buon appetito: St. Louis native opens restaurant in New York City

By Ellen Futterman, Editor-in-Chief November 20, 2020

Jacob Siwak grew up in Clayton attending Central Reform Congregation. He graduated from John Burroughs School and Washington University, having majored in film. He initially moved to New York to work for producer Scott Rudin (“No Country for Old Men,”...

Zoe Farmingdale

Theatrical homecoming, concert for the Rebbe, Light survey

June 13, 2019

Truth, immigration, loveIn any given week, numerous email pitches come my way, but here’s one from last week I couldn’t resist:Hello! I’m a St. Louis native, Solomon Schechter graduate and B’nai Amoona member. I’m based in Los Angeles, but I’m...

Some 45 former St. Louisans who now live in Israel came together earlier this month at the home of Leah Hakimian in Jerusalem.  Photo: Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman 

Former St. Louisans who have made aliyah reconnect in Jerusalem

By Maayan Jaffe-Hoffman, Special to the Jewish Light July 26, 2018

Some 45 attendees streamed into Jerusalem from across the country for the event July 5, making treks from Rehovot, in the central part of the country; Beit Shemesh, a suburb about 45 minutes outside Jerusalem, and the Samarian communities of Neve Tzuf...

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A nonprofit, independent news source to inform, inspire, educate and connect the St. Louis Jewish community.