HAYIDION The Prizmah Journal


The RAVSAK Chair

by Barbara Davis Issue: Tefillah

Arnee Winshall is completing her term as the founding chair of RAVSAK’s Board of Directors. I am usurping her column this quarter to pay tribute to the amazing work she has done in this capacity.

It is hard to find the right words to adequately capture the essence of Arnee; she is a devoted daughter, wife, mother, and caretaker. She is an educator, a linguist and a pioneer. But most of all, I think, Arnee is a builder. Through the whirlwind of travel and tasks that make up her busy life, Arnee is laying the foundation for our future.

The first time I saw her was on a panel at a RAVSAK conference, and somehow I learned that she was our destiny. Her willingness to serve as the founding chair of the new lay board of RAVSAK was a gift to us. Her concern for the former executive committee members and her sensitivity to the seismic nature of the transformation that was occurring in our organization, from a board led by school professionals to one composed of lay leaders, were crucial in the successful transition to the place we are today.

Arnee is our treasure—she is thoughtful, kind, considerate, intelligent, articulate and fun. Her connections are so numerous, her willingness to roll up her sleeves and get a job done is so inspirational, that it is hard to know how to sum up her attributes. There is a little poem, however, that describes her well, and we dedicate it to her on behalf of all of those she has led at RAVSAK:

Do all the good you can,
By all the means you can,
In all the ways you can,
In all the places you can,
At all the times you can,
To all the people you can,
As long as ever you can.

Thank you, Arnee, for all the good you have done for RAVSAK, its schools, its members, its students, its present and its future. We will always be guided by the example you have set as we work to fulfill RAVSAK’s mission to strengthen and sustain the Jewish life, leadership and learning of community day schools, ensuring a vibrant Jewish future.

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Tefillah

Most day schools are committed to cultivating Jewish prayer, tefillah, as a spiritual practice. In practice, they often find the obstacles formidable: lack of curriculum, knowledgeable and passionate prayer leaders, student interest, awareness of goals, to name a few. Articles here aim to help schools clarify their approach and strengthen the educational bases of school tefillah.

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