October 13, 2023

2023 JGS Annual Meeting Featured Distinguished Speakers

JGS Lifecare held its 2023 Annual Meeting on Tuesday, October 10, 2023 in the Hy and Roz Gloth Auditorium. “It was wonderful to be with our community of supporters to share our recent accomplishments, introduce plans to continue to enhance our quality of care through upcoming renovations, and to recognize the extraordinary contributions of Rudy D’Agostino,” commented Susan Halpern, vice president of development and communications.

Rabbi Devorah Jacobson, Director of Spiritual Life, began the meeting with an acknowledgement of the difficult times we now face following all that has transpired
recently in Israel, and the need to remember things that bring us hope and joy, including the simple joy that we are able to be together. She remarked, “Tonight is a time to count our blessings, and renew and recommit to the sacred vision made 111 years ago by our founders to not abandon or neglect our elders, to see to it that their days and years of frailty are filled with dignity and compassion and that they are provided with nothing less than the highest quality of care. She closed with a prayer in solidarity for the release of all captives.”

Dr. Stuart Anfang, chair of JGS Lifecare, offered words of tribute in memory of Marian Broder, the first chair of Ruth’s House, and past chair of The Jewish Nursing Home of Western MA, who passed away earlier this year, recognizing her years of leadership and vision. Noting recent accomplishments, he included the rebound in census across the campus; the celebration of the Ruth’s House 25th anniversary; the receipt of continued recognition for our high quality of care; special programs underway to support and recognize staff; and new grants secured to assist with transportation for residents, nursing communication, and a recent federal non-profit security grant that will support the purchase of additional surveillance cameras on campus. “Being board chair has been meaningful to me because it gives me the opportunity to see our Jewish values and legacy come to life in an innovative and caring way every day here across our campus. Caring for our community’s elders and most vulnerable with dignity and respect is a mitzvah and has been the hallmark of this organization for the past 111 years.”

Highlights of the meeting included remarks from Robert Whitten, President of JGS Lifecare, Dr. Margaret Calkins, President of IDEAS, Innovative Designs in Environments for an Aging Society, and recipient of the 2022 Changemaker Award from the Center for Health Design, and Adam Berman, Chief Executive Officer of JGS Lifecare. Representative Brain Ashe was on hand to make a special presentation to Rudy, on behalf of the Commonwealth and the MA House of Representatives. He offered his sincerest congratulations to his high school classmate and personal friend of over 45 years, “Nothing gives me more pleasure than to honor a friend that I have known for so long who has done such a remarkable job.”

The meeting culminated with the presentation of the Chair’s Service Award to Rudy D’Agostino, partner at Meyers Brothers Kalicka, PC, treasurer of JGS Lifecare and long-time supporter. “It is a great personal pleasure to pay tribute to Rudy,” said JGS Board Chair Dr. Stuart Anfang. “Rudy has provided outstanding leadership during his fifteen years serving as treasurer, helping guide us through our affiliation with Legacy Lifecare, a global pandemic, and a few other challenges, as well as our current preparations to transform care at JGS Lifecare.”

D’Agostino, in his acceptance remarks, remembered his dear friend Michael Frankel, past Chair of JGS Lifecare, who invited him to join the finance committee, and began what has been a long and rewarding service at JGS. He also shared advice to those who are interested in volunteering. “Get involved in an organization that you have a passion for that does great things in the community that you can rally around. For me, JGS does that. I really appreciate what JGS does for the community. I saw it firsthand when my dad was here. I saw all the care and hard work that goes into this.”