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Marsha Cowan

Dr. Catherine Chatterley

Shawna Dempsey

The Luncheon


by Rhonda Spivak, May 31,2012

The Jewish Foundation of Manitoba's Women's endowment fund luncheon on May 11th this year at the Fort Gary Hotel, featuring guest speaker Dr. Catherine Chatterley, was a time to reflect on the tremendous success of the Women's Endowment fund, and the visionary women who were the initial donors to the fund which was created in 1994.
 "The fund has accumulated a total of over one million dollars since it was first created in 1994," Marsha Cowan, the Foundation's executive director said. "We have gone from donating $750 to three charities in the fund's first year to $40,000 this year."

Cowan has reason to be proud of the fund which has promoted women's philanthropy, and which goes to women's causes.

"The Women's Endowment Fund is the only philanthropic initiative in the province that exclusively supports women’s programs and initiatives. Since 1994, the fund has distributed over $300,000 to 68 organizations;" Cowan notes.

At the event, the original donors to the fund, many of whom were in attendance in the packed room, were asked to stand and be duly recognized.
The luncheon is the biggest event of the year for the Women’s Endowment Fund. "'We see it as an opportunity to catch up on the Fund’s progress hear from a recipient about the impact of our work and be enlightened by a speaker who is making a difference in society," notes David Greaves, who is Director, Development & Marketing for the Jewish Foundation.
At the event, the attendees were told that any women who fulfills her pledge by December 31 will be identified as  a "Builder" of the Women’s Endowment Fund.
As of a week after the luncheon Cowan reported to the Winnipeg Jewish Review that "We have already had ten pledges filled out."
Greaves adds "We are always raising funds to grow the Women’s Endowment Fund and indeed the Foundation as a whole. This is not a time-bound campaign in the traditional sense, rather a special opportunity for our community of donors." 

WEF co-chairwomen Jane Rabb and Susan Rykiss have been at the helm the organization for two years and saw to it that the luncheon proceeded flawlessly. It was clear from the applause and standing ovation that Dr. Catherine Chatterley received that her address had gone over well. Chatterley is the founding director of the Canadian Institute of Antisemitism and her remarks at the luncheon can be read by clicking here.

Prior to Chatterley's address, Shawna Dempsey , the Co-Executive Director of Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art (MAWA), a recipient of the Women's Endowment Fund spoke. MAWA was founded in 1984 to encourage the intellectual and creative development of women in the visual arts by providing a forum for education and critical dialogue. In MAWA, senior women visual artists are paired with emerging women visual artists for one-on-one peer-based training and support. Many women artists in the province have credited MAWA with their successes. MAWA provides mentorship programs, lectures, workshops, critical reading and discussion opportunities, critical writing opportunities, an international craft workshop program, taught by New Canadian artists, and an artist residency.

For more information about the Jewish Foundation of Manitoba or the Women's Endowment Fund go to

The founding donors of the Women's Endowment Fund are listed below:

Sharon Allentuck

Ethel Amihude

Evelyn Arkin

Bev Aronovitch

Judith Aronovitch

Reva* Aronovitch

Phyllis Arron

Judith Bager

Sarah Barr

Lillian Bercuson

Marjorie Blankstein

Diane Boroditsky

Dee Buchwald

Nancy Campbell

Anne* Cantor


Marion Cham

Judy Charach

Patricia Charad

Saul Cherniack

Maxa Chisick

Maurene Cohen

Pat Cohen

Naomi Coodin

Marsha Cowan

Phyllis Dana

Ethel Dil

Lillian* M. Dozar

Sarah L. Duboff

Sharron Dudeck

Clara* Erlichman

Susan Feldman

Freeda* Fineman

Sophie* Fitelovitch

Freda* Fox

Tamar Freudmann-Cohen

Lisa Gale

Ruthy Gale

Susie Gale-Worrell

Karyn Glass

Yhetta M. Gold

Serky Goldberg

Elaine Goldstine

Janis Goodman

Sylvia Guertin-Riley

Sharon Guralnick

Bunny Gurvey

Marcia Haber

Esther* Hall

Elyse Halprin

Evelyn Hecht

Faye Hellner

Dorothy* Hershfield

Sara Hochman

Sandy Hyman

Susan Kay

Laila Kesselman

Barbara Kives

Claire Kives

Eleanor Kives

Sari Kives

Stephanie Kives

Sara Kohn

Hester Kroft

Hillaine Kroft

Rena Krongold

Sharon Labinsky

Karyn Lazareck

Michelle Lefler

Myrna H. Levin

Sylvia* Levinsohn

Celia* Lipkin

Gerry Lomow

Edith* Love

Reagan Macklin

Blaire Malkin

Lexi Malkin

Dale Marcus

Elyse Minden Schipper

Zena Minuk

Phoebe* Mozersky

Rose Muchnik

Alix Neaman

Francie Neaman

Lillian Neaman

Barbara Neaman Swan

Ruth Neiman

Claire Newman

Monica Newman

Rochelle Nozick

Mindel Olenick

Elaine Olin

Paula Parks

Vita* Parks

Jeanne Pauls

Marym* Peltz

Daphne Petrakos

Sylvia* Pollock

Heather Pullan

Sheila Rabb

Marcia Raber

Linda Radcliffe

Doris* Raskin

Lynn Raskin

Kelly Rayter

Maggie Rayter

Shani Reich

Marlene Reiss

Eleanor Rosenblat

Lillian* Rosenblat

Sheila Rubenstein

Naida Rubin

Ruth Rubin

Judy* Saifer

Evelyn Schaefer

Leora Schaefer

Sylvia Scott

Ann Secter

Sandra Secter

Beth Secter Paul Stein

Joanne Sheps

Sharon* Shinewald

Bertha* Shore


Anna Silverman

Fannie* Simkin

Evita Smordin

Fanny* Sommer

Ruth* Stern

Reese Stewart

Elaine* Stoller

Gabrielle Swan

Jillian Swan

Carla Vickar

Florence Vickar

Anna Wassermann

Jackie Wassermann

Zora* Weidman

Susan Weidman Schneider

Cathie Weinstein

Shaaron Weinstein

Tannis Weinstein

Leslie Wilder

Phyllis Wilder

Wendy Wilder

Serena Wolchock

Sharon Wolchock

Shauna Wolchock

Rochelle Zimberg



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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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