Varda Epstein nee Barbara Meyers

 


  
Share a favorite memory or two with our readers?Volunteering when Rabbi Rottenberg, zt"l, asked for a few strong BOYS to help
carry books.

What organizations are you currently involved in? I am the communications writer for Kars4Kids, which is the fundraising arm of Oorah, a Kiruv organization based in Lakewood, NJ. I work from home by virtual office. The CEO of the organization, Rabbi
Eliyahu Mintz brought me into the States this past summer so I could see the good work I'm helping to fund with my work. I spent time at two beautiful camp facilities in the Catskills and attended an amazing bar mitzvah: http://www.jewishpress.com/blogs/ear-to-the-ground/a-boy-a-camp-and-a-bar-mitzvah-hell-never-forget/2014/09/05/?src=ataglance
How do you earn living? See above :-) 

How did Hillel Academy prepare you for the future? I had an amazing class at Hillel. Though we only spent three years together, we all feel this incredible bond, as if we were siblings or a family of sorts. We held a reunion several years ago and my face hurt from smiling so much. I think I learned about achdus at Hillel, more than anything else.
 
Share some info about your family. I'm a third-generation born Pittsburgher on my mother's mother's side. And look what I went and did by moving to Israel and giving birth to 12 kids in Jerusalem: I broke the Pittsburgh chain. Oh darn. Also, my late uncle was Myron Cope. Go Stillers. I have 12 children and 9 grandchildren. My husband is from Skokie.

What do you do in your free time?
I blog about Israel. It's an obsession. I also play dumb facebook games.

Hillel Trivia - How  
many parking spaces in the lot? 
What lot? There's a parking lot?
 
Who was your first Hillel teacher? Miss Hodil.
 
What was your favorite class? English. Duh. I'm a WRITER?
 
Did you have a favorite teacher? Who was it and why? Jewish studies? Rabbi Roberts, zt"l. Secular studies, Florence Marcus, a"h and Andi Weiss.
When did you attend Hillel Academy?1972-1975

Most interesting person in your contacts? Robert Werdine, a moderate Muslim who defended me for my pro-Israel views. See: http://blogs.timesofisrael.com/before-i-vote-a-defense-of-varda-epstein/. We have become dear friends.
 
Share something with our students you wish someone had told you when you were in school? I wish someone had told me that it was normal for teens to suffer so much unbearable angst and that it would not be like that forever and that a productive and wonderful life lay ahead of me.
 
Can you share a memory about Myron ob"m?  My uncle loved babies and kids, like everyone else in my family. I remember the way he would play with my cousin Danny when he was a baby and lovingly call him "Monkey Man." He had a knack. 
 
Do you fly his flag outside your home? I flew two Towels from my mirpesset (porch) the week of his shiva, knowing that this was not at all meaningful for anyone but me. But it felt right. It's weird, I have this uncle who was the most famous man in Pittsburgh, and I moved to a place where no one knows who he is. 
 
Did you have an input in the towel design? No input in the towel design.
 
Thank you for your time!