President’s Corner

Check in here to get the latest word on our major accomplishments, upcoming events, and your opportunities to participate and contribute from our Men’s Club Co-Presidents, Steve Lessman and Andy Wagner.

Looking Forward to 2022

The Winter Holidays have arrived. Chanukah candles are lit, the smell of latkes is in the air, and families are celebrating. As we write this article, our world is still a challenging place, and carrying out programs together has been difficult. Let’s hope that in the coming year, as children get vaccinated, we can again achieve some degree of normalcy and enjoy each other’s company in person.

We have many activities already planned for 2022 including:

  • Sunday, January 23rd Men’s Club Breakfast. Justice Robert Gordon, member of Beth Shalom and Jewish Sports Historian will discuss Jews in Sports.  Information will be shared on the CBS Byte. Signup will be available along with all of our events on our SquareSite:
  • Sunday, February 6th: Men’s Club Breakfast. Guest Speaker Jonathan Eig Author of the Award Winning Biography Ali: A Life.
  • Sunday, February 13rd: World Wide Wrap
  • TBA: Announcements of our Kavod Award and Man/Youth of the Year honorees
  • Sunday, March 6th: Lox Box
  • Saturday, March 19th: Men’s Club Shabbat
  • Thursday, June 16th: Men’s Club Golf Outing

Please mark your calendars now and plan to join us for these outstanding programs and events!

Continuing our “meet the CBS Men’s Club Executive Board” series, this month we introduce you to Gary Solomon, House VP. Gary was born in New York, celebrated his Bar Mitzvah at Brotherhood Synagogue, and attended La Guardia High School, where he played tennis and basketball. While in high school, Gary went to Israel twice as a volunteer for Israel with his family, and he spent three weeks in Israel as an exchange student. Gary then went to Washington University in St. Louis for both undergrad and graduate school in Occupational Therapy. While in grad school, he met his future wife, Debbie Handler, daughter of Dr. Raymond and Arlene Handler, who are long standing members of Congregation Beth Shalom. Debbie also received a Master’s in Occupational Therapy at Wash U.

Gary is currently Therapy Director for Chicago Metro Hand Therapy, where he has worked since 1998, with offices in Arlington Heights. He is very active in the American Society of Hand Therapists and was their President from 2016-17. He is currently Vice Chair of the American Hand Therapy Foundation. Gary is also busy consulting and traveling the United States, recently in Alaska, teaching therapeutic techniques.

Gary and Debbie were married in 1995 and soon became involved at CBS. Gary became a member of the Men’s Club Board and served as Recording Secretary before his current position as House VP. Debbie also has been extremely active and is a Past President of CBS. Gary and Debbie have two daughters, Ilana and Talia. Ilana just recently graduated from NYU hoping to be a music teacher, and Talia is a freshman at University of Maryland.

We thank Gary and Debbie for their many years of service to Congregation Beth Shalom and the Men’s Club. We wish Gary much success in his current role as VP of House.

Andy and I wish all of you a very happy secular New Year and good health in 2022 and hope we soon you all at CBS in the coming days and weeks ahead.

L ‘Shalom,

Steve and Andy