— by Sharon Levin
The Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy’s 13th Annual Gala attracted 525 members of the Barrack community.
Len and Lynne Barrack committed $1 million to the school. This brought their total in annual commitments over the past seven years to almost $6.5 million.
Journalist Jake Tapper engaged and entertained with his poignant and timely stories from the field. Tapper graduated from the school in 1987 when it was known as the Akiba Hebrew Academy, and shared charming memories of his time at the school. While he reminisced about his years as an Akiba student, he thanked the school for giving him the solid ethical and Jewish foundation that continues to guide him every day.
Tapper was introduced by fellow alumnae Alana Abramson who know Tapper from their work together as journalists ABC News. Tapper left his position as ABC’s senior White House correspondent and joined CNN in January 2013. His one-hour weekday program The Lead With Jake Tapper begin airing in March 2013. After his prepared remarks, Montgomery County Commissioner Josh Shapiro (Akiba 1987) moderated as Tapper fielded questions from the attendees on a wide range of controversial topics including the recent controversies regarding Brian William’s reporting and Ferguson, Missouri.
Tapper is the author of three books:
- The Outpost, a 2013 New York Times best seller focusing on the deadly battle at Combat Outpost Keating in Afghanistan.
- Down and Dirty : The Plot to Steal the Presidency (2001) and
- Body Slam: The Jesse Ventura Story (1999).
Barrack students have an opportunity to spend a semester at the Muss program in eleventh grade. David Treatman, a junior at Barrack, spoke personally about how transformational this immersive experience in Israel was for him and his classmates. The video on below captures the mood of the program.
Seventh grader Ruby Benjamin represented the Barrack middle school as she related the Torah portion with the work done at the school.
The announcement by Sharon Levin of the establishment of a new Science,Technology, Engineering, and Math program was met with great anticipation and excitement.
An auction by was held by Steve Katz to fund scholarships to the Alexander Muss High School in Israel. The goal of these scholarships is to make it possible for every student who would like to participate to do so. The Muss Program influences many of the participant’s life choices after graduation from high school.