When asked to describe the Amos and Celia Heilicher Minneapolis Jewish Day School (HMJDS), one word immediately came to mind for Lynne Redleaf: community. “There are many reasons why I chose to send my kids to HMJDS,” said Lynne, “but the sense of community I felt at the school was top on the list.”
Lynne found HMJDS a welcoming place that provided her children, Jared and Ellie, with the individual attention they needed to thrive. Married to Andrew Redleaf since 2010, the couple has been steadfast supporters of the Day School. They will be honored with the Ner Tamid Award at this year’s Annual Benefit taking place on Saturday, February 1, 2014, 7:00 p.m. at Beth El Synagogue.
“I’ve seen the difference their generosity has made,” said Wendy Lovell-Smith, an HMJDS parent and friend of the Redleafs. “Because of Lynne and Andy, our school has more resources to better meet students’ individual needs.”
Wanting to ensure that the Day School could accommodate the learning styles of all children, the Redleafs have generously supported the Center for Individual Achievement. Through the Center, students with a wide variety of learning styles and needs receive the assistance they require to succeed at HMJDS, through both additional support and personalized enrichment opportunities.
Where to donate their money is a decision Lynne and Andrew, the founder and CEO of Whitebox Advisors, make together. “We take into consideration our priorities, our belief in the mission and the efficiency of the organization,” said Andrew.
“They are different from many individuals who simply write checks – they also become actively engaged and engrained in organizations,” said Dave Gutzke, Senior VP at U.S. Bank, who met the Redleafs a few years ago when they came to him with a financial need. Lovell-Smith agrees, saying that she and Lynne got to know each other from serving on the same boards and committees of various organizations.
For both Gutzke and Lovell-Smith, time spent with the Redleafs quickly grew into friendship. “I know that Lynne becomes friends with people she volunteers with, which isn’t surprising to me,” said Lovell-Smith. “Both she and Andy are such kind, thoughtful, and caring people.”
Huge advocates for causes that focus on at-risk and special needs kids, the Redleafs give their time and money to places such as the PACER Center, JCC KidsFit, Parent Child Home Program through Jewish Family and Children’s Service, and the Family Defense Center. Other organizations include the Washburn Center for Children, the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and the Minneapolis Jewish Federation, to name a few.
Event program and live auction
The Redleafs will receive the Ner Tamid Award during a short program the night of Feb. 1st. This honor is given to those who show ongoing leadership and commitment to HMJDS. A live auction will also be held with exciting items up for bid, including a diamond pendant necklace from Continental Diamond, and a luxury travel package donated from Wendy and Colin Smith and Exclusive Resorts.
Let the games begin
Guests will have the chance to beat the house as we bring a bit of Las Vegas to Minneapolis! With 30 game tables, guests can play some of their favorite casino games including black jack, poker, Texas hold’em and more! Dollars won are then cashed in for raffle tickets to win great prizes!
The evening will include heavy hors d’oeuvres and delectable desserts catered by Spirit of Asia, as well as a cash bar and coffee bar. Kashrut will be observed.
The Annual Benefit is the Day School’s largest fundraising event of the year, raising money that supports 300 students in grades K-8. Co-chairs of the evening are Lisa Villalta and Lauren Weiser. Registration is available online at www.hmjds.org or by calling 952-381-3500.
This year’s online auction will take place January 20 – February 1, 2014. Be sure to check out the great deals available by logging on to biddingforgood.com/hmjdsbenefit. For more information, contact Sue Freeman at [email protected].