For those who were unable to attend my retirement party on Wednesday afternoon, I want to share with you the gratitude I was able to express to the 164 people who so kindly came to celebrate with me. For those who came to the spectacular send-off, I hope you had as much fun as I did. And for those wonderful friends at the J who threw the party, I felt truly appreciated.
I have spent my professional life writing about the arts, teaching the arts, and – for the last 16 years at the J – presenting the arts.
When Linda Loewenstein called to invite me to lunch in the fall of 2003, I had no idea a new chapter of my life was about to begin. The J needed a part-time programmer and, as it so happened, Menorah: The Center for Adult Jewish Education in Boulder – which was founded in 1980 by Charlotte Michener – needed a new halftime director as well. It was “bashert” – a perfect match.
As I told the wonderful audience, I made friends and had fun, but what I cherish most is the eminently rewarding community building work we do together. For 16 years I have offered programs to the community that reflect my taste and match my interests. I presented programs that I wanted to attend. ACE has been an almost entirely self-serving proposition!
Because I am such a fan of the arts, it has been a privilege to showcase amazing talent, in the local community and beyond. Some of you have heard me joke that my real job title should be impresario. Here’s how it works. I simply find people who are extraordinarily gifted, I offer them a venue to display their artistry or knowledge, Jodi does all the real work, and then I get the credit. It’s a good gig.
I will miss sharing my enthusiasms, my understandings of the world, and my jokes with you. I trust you have found ACE programming to be meaningful and relevant, provocative and enjoyable.
I look forward to seeing the future unfold in my life and at the J, and I look forward to sharing my insights with you at the 8th annual Boulder Jewish Film Festival at the Dairy Arts Center in March.
From the bottom of my heart I thank you for your warmth, support, and friendship, and for being an intellectually curious and artistically adventurous audience. I am overwhelmingly grateful for this opportunity, and proud of what we’ve accomplished.