In Honour of Aaron and Beverley Black
In December 2021, the Black family established the Aaron and Beverley Black Endowment Fund in honour of Howard’s parents Aaron z”l & Beverley Black to support Professional Development. As current TanenbaumCHAT parents, Howard and Marlene understand the value of providing staff and faculty with important enrichment and learning opportunities. We sat down with Howard to find out about their motivations for creating this award.
Why did you establish this award?
I was raised in a traditional Conservative Jewish home. We observed Shabbat and kashrut and, as a family, were active leaders in our synagogue. While my siblings and I did not have the opportunity to attend a Jewish day school, we received intensive after-school Jewish and Hebrew education. To me, equally as significant as our formal education, however, was the importance of growing up in a Jewish household in which my parents served as the best possible role models showing, by example, how to live as committed Jews, observing Jewish traditions and rituals, with a strong commitment to the State of Israel.
We were also taught to show respect to all people and, especially, to the older members of our community, and to our Rabbis and teachers. Teachers have the potential to profoundly influence their students and they have a significant role to play in inspiring and encouraging young people in their growth and development as well-educated and committed members of both the secular and Jewish communities.
I therefore felt that it was most fitting and appropriate for us to establish this endowment fund supporting Professional Development in honour of my parents, as a legacy and as a sign of gratitude and appreciation for all that they have given to our entire extended family over the years.
Why support TanenbaumCHAT?
TanenbaumCHAT is an institution that should enhance the pride and appreciation that we, as members of the Toronto Jewish community, ought to feel. Along with a superior formal secular and Judaic education, it also provides a pseudo family and supportive environment for all of our children in which each student is encouraged to reach his and her potential. Students graduate from the school with formidable study and work habits, enriched by extensive extracurricular and social programs, implemented by a staff whose love, commitment and dedication to their students is unparalleled.
Why provide an endowment fund to support Professional Development?
I wanted to identify an area that would demonstrate our appreciation towards the school’s educational staff. They spend more time with our children on a daily basis than we do. They have the potential to significantly impact our children on their future life’s paths as well-educated, committed members of the secular and Jewish communities, and who embody superior moral and ethical behavior. After discussions with Dr. Jonathan Levy, the idea of an endowment fund for Professional Development seemed most fitting.