JVS Scholarship Committee


You Can Make A Difference


This year has presented unprecedented challenges for our community and country. We continue to face tremendous economic uncertainty, a pandemic, prohibitions on large gatherings and new social distancing rules and, as a result, we were not able to hold our annual Awards Ceremony in July.

Despite these challenges, the formal education of our community continues. The JVS Scholarship Program has stepped up in its 48th year of existence and granted $841,250 in scholarships to our students, a new record amount, which has allowed us to help 250 students in need, thanks to our generous donors, committee members and dedicated staff .

“The continued support of the program is making a transformational difference in the lives of students, many of whom have faced substantially greater obstacles this year,” said Jonathan A. Karp.

“We are incredibly proud to provide this critical support and a connection to our Scholarship community so students can further their educational dreams, in spite of the challenges created by COVID.”

As Co-Chairs, we are deeply committed to meeting this growing need, solidifying the program’s mission and supporting these future leaders in our community that just need a helping hand to get them through their education. “In this uncertain time, it is heartening to be able to find inspiration when we are faced with such overwhelming circumstances,” said Alan Polsky. “It is so inspiring to hear stories from students who are currently working on the front lines to fight COVID-19. They are tremendous assets to our community and I am so proud of the work the Scholarship Program does to support these incredible scholars.”

Mission of JVS Scholarship Committee

The JVS Scholarship Committee serves to ensure the continuation and financial stability of the JVS Scholarship Program. Through its dedicated volunteers, along with JVS staff, the Committee is involved in every aspect of the program. This includes interviewing and selecting potential recipients, program oversight, fundraising campaigns, administering the scholarships, alumni outreach and development, and recruiting new members and donors.

The JVS Scholarship Committee is a unique policy and services committee. Our dedicated committee members are actively engaged in:

  • Setting program policy and structure
  • Hands-on participation interviewing prospective and renewal students
  • Award determination
  • Participate in one or more subcommittees:
    Student Interviewing
    Alumni Development
  • Support Development/Fundraising efforts, campaigns and events
  • Pledge a minimum $1,000 “give or get” annual contributions
  • Attend four committee meetings a year

Former Chairs of the JVS Scholarship Committee


Edgar M. Phillips, Jr.


Charles Wilson


Betty Wilson


Rhea Coskey


Marilyn Kwiker


Donna Ellman Garber


Joyce Berger


Joy Kravitz


Judy Felsenthal


Rhea Coskey, Ellen Morehead Weisman, Nancy Paul


Nan Kalish Goodman, Ellen Weisman Morehead


Ellen Weisman Morehead, Marnie Bodek


Nan Kalish Goodman, Jonathan A. Karp


Jonathan A. Karp and Leland Felsenthal


Leland Felsenthal, Matthew Paul


Matthew Paul, Jonathan A. Karp


Matthew Paul, Alan Polsky


Alan Polsky and Jonathan A. Karp

2021 JVS Scholarship Committee

Laura Adler

Mimi Alpert Feldman

David Bolour

Jessica Bowman

Sunny Caine

Rhea Coskey

Heather and Michael Ezer

Dr. James Factor

Judy Felsenthal

Leland Felsenthal

Ashley Franklin

Frenda Franklin

Alexandra and Ryan Gagerman

Judith Galperson

Dr. Brian Gantwerker

Donna Ellman Garber

Marilyn Garber

Nan Kalish Goodman

Jackie Gottlieb

Susan Greenberg

Salli Harris

Dr. Kevin Hayavi

Barbara Herman

Jonathan A. Karp, Co-Chair

Ruth Karp

David Klapper

Rini Kraus

Caro Krissman

Fred Kunik

Barbara R. Leanse

Pearle Rae Levey

Robert Liebesman

Jeannette Mandelbaum

Ellen Weisman Morehead

David Nikayin

Neda Nikayin

Eleanor Padnick

Matthew Paul

Nancy Paul

David Pelaia

Helane Pines

Alan Polsky, Co-Chair

Sahar Pouyanrad

Adam Pivko

Joyce Powell

Rick Powell

Patricia Rosenburg

Seth Silverman

Steven Taylor

Polly Marks Weinberg

A. Charles Wilson

Chic Wolk

Support the Dreams of Jewish Scholars

In today’s economy, a higher education is no longer a luxury but a necessity. A college education remains the best investment a student can make in his or her future – recent studies have shown that people with a college degree earn 98% more than people without a degree.

Circle of Honor Endowment Fund

The funds invested by Circle of Honor donors play an essential role in supporting the JVS Scholarship Program now and in the years to come. The Circle of Honor Endowment Fund is long-term investment mechanism enabling JVS to use a percentage of the total earned interest to create scholarship awards now, while reinvesting the remainder of the funds to create awards into the future.

Individuals and corporations who join the Circle of Honor, starting at the $25,000 level or above, create a permanent scholarship fund that may be named in the donor’s honor or in honor or memory of a loved one. Circle of Honor pledges may be paid over time.

Circle of Honor donors are prominently acknowledged on the JVS Wall of Honor in four categories:

Silver Circle (gifts of $25,000)
Gold Circle ($50,000)
Platinum Circle ($75,000)
Diamond Circle ($100,000 or more)

Donors are also invited to attend our annual Scholarship Awards Reception, where they have the opportunity to meet the recipient(s) of their scholarship awards.

Students face serious financial challenges in pursuing higher education:

  • Over the last decade, college-loan balances in the United States have jumped more than $833 billion to reach an all-time high of $1.4 trillion, according to a recent report by Experian.
  • The average outstanding balance is now $34,144, up 62 percent over the last 10 years. In addition, the percentage of borrowers who owe $50,000 or more has tripled over the same time period, according to a separate report by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
  • A college education is now the second-largest expense an individual is likely to make in a lifetime-right after purchasing a home.
  • For recent graduates, their student loan debt also has long-term consequences and may very well shape the rest of their lives. From buying a car or a home to getting married and even having children, many millennials are putting off life’s major milestones because of their record debt.

More Information

Patricia Sills
Scholarship Program Director
6505 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 200
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Randy H. Lapin
Senior Vice President Philanthropy
(323) 761-8598

Joyce Cele
Scholarship Program Coordinator
6505 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 200
Los Angeles, CA 90048

Inquiries: scholarship@jvs-socal.org

Make an Impact Today

There are many ways that you can have an immediate impact through your support of the JVS Scholarship Program.



Create a Personal

Fundraising Page


Student Quotes


Awards Ceremony

For more information, contact the JVS Scholarship Program Director at (323) 306 4023

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