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Jewish Federation puts on a well attended retirement party for outgoing CEO Elaine Goldstine

by Rhonda Spivak, June 12, 2023

The Jewish Federation of Winnipeg put on a well attended retirement party for Elaine Goldstine, outgoing CEO of the Federation on June 4, 2023 at the multi-purpose room at the Asper Campus.


Former President of the Federation , Justice David Kroft, who was involved in selecting Elaine as CEO of the Federation spoke of how Elaine always operated with integrity. He also joked that "I didn't need these glasses when I was President."


Adam Levene, another former Federation President involved in hiring Elaine as CEO of the Federationj noted that during his tenure "I spoke to Elaine every morning at 7 a.m.", and emphasized that she always operated as a true mensch."


Laurel Malkin, who was the Federation President after Levene, noted that she and Elaine went to Herzlia Academy night school together, showijng photos of when Elaine was  dressed up as a light for Chanukah and also as a Macabee. 


Joel Lazer who became Federation President after Malkin noted that Elaine had great expertise in planning missions to Israel, and that he has been on "5-6 missions" with Elaine, and these missions expose  people who have never been to Israel to this great country and "they are friends to us and to Israel." He said to Elaine, "Maybe you'll consider taking out more missions," even after retirement.


Gustavo Zentner, the current President of the Federation, indicated in his remarks referred to the"quiet, steady, and essential work done day-in and day-out," that Elaine did as Federation CEO.



 "That best describes Elaine's contributions as a CEO; her commitment to ensuring that we had an office that was actively engaged and staffed with professionals entrusted to      carry on with programs and portfolios to serve our community."


"Everyone knows in the community that if you need to know who someone is, whom they are related to, or how to get them involved, Elaine is your Go-To person at the federation,"Zentner added.


"Part of her legacy is to remain calm and wait to see how things play out. Always consulting with the chairs she has worked with and doing the best for the organization and the community. Consistently keeping tabs on where our financial support went and always wondering how the federation could better serve our community,"


In toasting Elaine, Zentner said, "We are grateful for 30 years of service and the positive impact you’ve made on so many people’s lives."


"As you embark on this new chapter, we wish you all the happiness and relaxation that retirement brings. May you have many sleepless nights filled with sleepovers with little Abby and many more grandchildren to come.  And good luck reconnecting with Ian! It will be like starting to date again, as you spend time together with endless walks and talks after a busy career at the federation."


Elaine thanked everyone involved for such a "wonderful party,"  and stated, "words can't express my gratitude." She also noted that as CEO of the Federation there were times where she worked "12-16 hours a day," "hardly seeing my family." She said that she "had learned a lot" from Bob Freedman, and thanked him for "the confidence you had in  me in appointing me as Campaign Chair." She also made reference to the many interesting peopel she had met during her career at the Federation and recalled how she and Freedman had met Harry Belefonte.


She made the audience laugh when she said that  "My first trip to Israel was in 1996 and it cost 1996 dollars." She referred to the Words and Deeds dinner honouring the Asper Foundation as a highlight of her tenure. 


She also thanked all of her devoted staff, saying "you are a great team of professionals."


Elaine received a standing ovation from the audience of about 200 or more people. Members of the Federation staff danced the horah.

Before and after the speeches the audience had a chance to shmooze and were treated to refreshments.


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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

Opinions expressed in letters to the editor or articles by contributing writers are not necessarily endorsed by Winnipeg Jewish Review.