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

Edie Roodman (at right) is shown on a mission trip to Israel with friends formerly from St. Louis.

The St. Louis native at the helm of the Oklahoma Israel Exchange

ELLEN FUTTERMAN, Editor-In-ChiefPublished April 10, 2022

Often, when we write about people who grew up in St. Louis but went on to prominence elsewhere, that elsewhere is the East or West Coast. Not so for Edie Roodman. Roodman staked roots in Oklahoma City, Okla. where she was the executive director of Jewish...

Joan Berkman. Photo courtesy Strauss Peyton Photography

The Lighter Side: Q&A with St. Louis Press Club President Joan Berkman

BILL MOTCHAN, Special to the Jewish LightPublished February 27, 2022

The Jewish Light recently talked with Joan Berkman, president of the St. Louis Press Club and president of Face Watchers Public Relations, as part of The Lighter Side series — short interviews with interesting people in the St. Louis Jewish community....

Rochelle Goldman and René Zar at Artists First.

René Zar vowed to care for friend’s adult children with disabilities—and that’s what she’s done for 16 years

ELLEN FUTTERMAN, EDITOR-IN-CHIEFPublished October 28, 2021

Sometimes heroes live quietly among us, not looking for recognition but choosing instead to blend in, and do what they do without any fanfare. René Zar is that kind of hero. She has spent more than 15 years fulfilling a promise to a dying friend,...

Mark Schenberg in his automotive repair shop, Car-Doc, located in Maryland Heights. Note the tidiness and immaculate floors.

How Mark Schenberg’s love affair with a ’76 Camaro fueled his career

Ellen Futterman, Editor-in-ChiefPublished October 8, 2021

Life seemed to be falling into place for Mark Schenberg in the summer of 1991. Then in his mid-20s, he was hunting for his first house in Creve Coeur. His auto repair business run from his parents’ garage had taken off, so much so that he had opened...

Bob Denlow. Photo: Stewart Halperin

Retired lawyer got the bug to push a shutter in his second act

BILL MOTCHAN, Special to the Jewish LightPublished September 19, 2021

Over 40 years, St. Louis attorney Bob Denlow developed a successful eminent domain law practice as a trial lawyer. His job was to protect his clients’ properties and businesses that faced forcibly losing their properties to governments and large...

Judge Renee Hardin-Tammons, Judge Arthur Litz and Rob Litz  at the portrait unveiling. Photo Bill Motchan

County courthouse unveils portrait of beloved judge Arthur Litz

BILL MOTCHAN, Special to the Jewish LightPublished August 27, 2021

St. Louis Circuit Court Judge Arthur Litz made a huge impact on the legal profession during his career. Now, the 98-year-old Jewish retired judge will have a permanent spot in the 5th Circuit Court: His portrait will hang in the court he presided over....

Rob Aronson

St. Louis financial planner works to ‘Change the World’ with Jewish music


Music is an integral part of Judaism and dates back to the first temple in Jerusalem, when Levites sang and played the harp, lyre and shofar during religious services. Centuries later, communal singing remains a constant in Jewish worship and celebrations,...

Edan Shoghi holds a black king, his favorite chess piece. He said he considers the king the most valuable attacking piece on the chess board. Photo: Bill Motchan 

Young Jewish chess players develop matchless life skills

By Bill Motchan, Special to the Jewish LightPublished December 31, 2020

Edan Shoghi, an energetic 9-year-old at Saul Mirowitz Jewish Community School, enjoys playing soccer, basketball, tennis and Minecraft. But he really excels at chess.“What I like best about playing chess is strategy and tactics,” Edan said. “Let’s...

Sandy Kaplans Ada With Blue Umbrella (2020)Kaplan explained: This sculpture is based on a painting by contemporary artist, Alex Katz, whose wife, Ada, was his favorite subject. The bust sits on a separate wooden base that was built specifically for this piece and has a hole to hold the umbrella in place. The umbrella is a separate piece that gets attached to the base.

Five questions for sculptor/ceramist Sandy Kaplan

By Ellen Futterman, Editor-in-ChiefPublished October 28, 2020

Just at an age when many people flirt with retirement, Sandy Kaplan found herself smack dab in the middle of a burgeoning art career she couldn’t have imagined when she was younger and working in development at Barnes Jewish Hospital Foundation.A divorced...

Marianne McKenna will serve as a Democratic election judge for St. Charles County on Nov. 3. Photo: Bill Motchan

Jewish poll worker can’t ask St. Charles residents to don masks but she still wants them to be able to vote safely

By Eric Berger, Associate EditorPublished October 26, 2020

Marianne McKenna appreciates how St. Charles over the last year has made a Jewish Democrat such as herself feel like she belongs.First she found out she was not the only local Jew when she attended the city’s first community menorah lighting in December...

ABOVE: Joan Silber (right) hosted her son David, his wife, Sharonne, and seven of their eight children at her home in Frontenac for the High Holidays. The family left Israel before the start of its second lockdown and is now celebrating Sukkot at Silber’s home. PHOTO: ERIC BERGER

As Israel prepared for a lockdown due to the coronavirus, a St. Louis native returned to the U.S.

By Eric Berger, Associate EditorPublished October 8, 2020

Joan and Sherman Silber had some unexpected houseguests from Israel for the High Holidays this year. As the number of coronavirus cases in Israel spiked last month to the point where the country now has the highest rate of daily new coronavirus infections...

Henry Rosenblum is flanked by his grandfather, Doron Berger (left), and his father, Steven Rosenblum at the Garden Shul Synagogue in Cape Town, South Africa.  

Mitzvot from the Heart: Henry Rosenblum

Mitzvot from the Heart is compiled by Elise KrugPublished July 31, 2020

Henry Rosenblum followed what is now a family tradition: a bar mitzvah abroad. Henry’s eldest brother, Myles, became a bar mitzvah in Jerusalem, joined by extended family on both sides. Then Spencer, the middle son, traveled with his family to Budapest,...

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