Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Anti-Defamation League's " Aventura Community of Respect Awards Luncheon"

December 8th...wow I cannot believe we are almost half way through December! This is crazy! I wish time would slow down, just a little not a lot. I just need to catch up with everything and some extra time would definitely help my cause...lol

Anyway, back to the reason why you are reading this. Today, I assisted Aventura Commissioner Billy Joel (No not the singer, this guy is way cooler!) during the opening address for the Anti-Defamation League's "Aventura Community of Respect Awards Luncheon". Commissioner Joel, or Billy as he asked me to call him, was such a neat guy. He was down-to-earth and very family oriented, I can see why his community speaks so highly of him! His wife was a riot. She had the funniest stories about fashion. It seems that she is always in the right place at the right time. I commented on how cute her shoes were and she had a story for me. Apparently the shoes were by an Italian designer and she had fallen in love with them! You know us girls have a tendency to do that with shoes:) So she went to Italy to find them. Well, her size was no where to been found. She came back to the States upset that she could not find the shoes in Italy or neighboring countries. Then one day she found herself staring at them in an outlet mall for 50% off in her size!!!! It was fate! Obviously, she bought them and lived happily ever after...lol She is too cute!

The welcome address went great and the luncheon was out exactly on time which always makes people happy. The focus of the event was to recognize three individuals in the Aventura Community who really went above and beyond to make a difference. The ADL recognized Rubin Salant, a retired real estate developer, with its Torch of Liberty award for his support, through both his time and donations, of charities and events that promote ADL's mission. The ADL also recognized Heather Rohan, CEO of the Aventura Hospital and Medical Center, with the Community of Respect Award, and Thomas R. Oliveri, senior vice president of Northern Trust, with the Community Service Award. Joel said he thought the ADL is more important now than ever. ``Increased terrorism, bigotry, hatred, bias, prejudice, and acts of anti-Semitism have all created a new crisis for us,'' he said. ``The ADL is our bulwark, our strength to protect us against such vicious acts.''

The luncheon was extremely powerful and dug deep into the wounds of so many who have been hurt by anti-semetic deeds. Although I have never participated in any unacceptable behaviors spoken about today, I have developed a new found understanding of what so many people went through over the decades and even now. The ADL is still alive because anti-semitism is NOT dead! Only we as individuals can make a difference. For more information on the ADL of Aventura visit http://regions.adl.org/florida/

Until Next Time!

Megan Clementi

Miss Florida USA 2010

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