8 over 80 Honorees Announced

The Kinneret Council on Aging has announced the honorees for their 2013 8 over 80 Honorary Dinner!  They are:  Claire Mercer, Anita Hara, Bunny Rosen, Gloria Newberger, Charlotte Ettinger Getz Rotenberg, John Lowndes, Irv Shargaa and Madeline Wolly.

These amazing people will be honored at a dinner on Sunday, February, 24th at 5pm.  Ticket prices begin at $100.  Congratulatory ads can also be placed in the Tribute Book.  For information, contact Leslie Collin at lcollin@bellsouth.net or by calling at 407-425-4537.

John Lowndes, 81, founded what has become the largest law firm in Central Florida, Lowndes, Drosdick, Doster, Kantor & Reed, P.A.  John instilled in his firm and each of its members a culture in which a centerpiece is the commitment to give back to the community, whether in volunteer hours, financial support or leadership roles.  John has served on numerous boards in healthcare and the arts over the years. One example has been the establishment of the John & Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Theatre.  John is known for his wit, wisdom and charm and lives in Winter Park with his wife Rita.
Madeline WollyMadeline Wolly, 88, has been active in the community since 1985 when she and her late husband George first become involved with Jewish Family Services.  They were instrumental in raising funds and awareness to spotlight how the agency was improving the lives of individuals and families in the greater Orlando area.  JFS’ current building, located on Lee Road, was dedicated in George’s memory due to his years of dedication in 2001.  Madeline continues to serve on the board of Jewish Family Services and is actively involved in the annual Gala.  She has previously served on the board of the Jewish Federation.  Madeline started a Hadassah chapter in 1947, and is still involved today.  She lives in Village on the Green and serves on two resident committees.
Gloria NewbergerGloria Newberger, 84 moved to Altamonte Springs in 2004 and quickly became involved in the Central Florida community. Her involvement in community organizations began in high school where she was class president and continued on at Syracuse University where she was elected Chief Justice of the Student Court. As a young mother she was President of four different PTA’s as well as President of a camp for underprivileged girls. When she moved to Orlando, she continued her involvement by visiting seniors who were living in long-term care facilities. This has led to her involvement on the board of the Friends of the Jewish Pavilion. She is active with Hadassah, exercises daily and loves to live by her daughter, Nancy Ludin.
Bunny RosenBunny Rosen, 84, is an active and vibrant woman whose volunteer efforts benefit many local organizations.  Bunny was raised in Cologne, Germany in a close-knit Jewish family.  They fled Germany in 1936 and lived in Belgium until they immigrated to Pittsburgh when Bunny was 12 years old.  Bunny has always contributed to her community.  At 19, she started Group 9, a Hadassah group for young business women. She has continued her involvement in community organizations here in Central Florida for over 30 years; serving on numerous boards including Jewish Pavilion,  Congregaton Ohev Shalom and Hadassah.  She also collects gently used children’s clothing for homeless students through the Seminole County School Board.
Irv ShargaaIrv Shargaa, 83, has been operating his upholstery business, Tropical Decorators, just off Orange Blossom Trail, for over 63 years.  He has dedicated his professional and personal life to his family and his community.  Through his business, he has been known to donate mattress pads to the Coalition for the Homeless or donate his services to make Torah covers for Temples.  He has been an active member of the Central Orlando Kiwanis Club and has spearheaded many of their philanthropy projects, including playing Santa Claus for over 25 years.  When he is not in his office, he can often be found buying toys, delivering turkeys or working at a polling place.  Irv and his wife Barbara have been married for 58 years.
Anita HaraAnita Hara, 87, is mother of three with seven grandchildren and one great grandchild, will celebrate 65 years of marriage with Joe Hara.   Anita became a resident of Orlando 43 years ago.  In Chicago, at the age of 18, she was first introduced to community work through HIAS, the Hebrew Immigration Aid Society who had the responsibility of bringing Jews persecuted in their home countries to America.  This opened her mind to community service and when she came to Orlando with her family, she found ways to help those in need in our community.  She worked with both Jewish organizations such as Hadassah, Jewish Family Services and the Kinneret Council on Aging as well as community groups.  She was involved with the Human Service Council and raised funds for heart research through the Florida Hospital Foundation board and served as chairman of the March of Dimes Gourmet Gala.  To increase her knowledge in the performance of social work and to better serve the community, she returned to college at age fifty for her degree in social sciences.
Claire MercerClaire Mercer, will turn 84 in December.  She has been involved with the Jewish Community Center in Maitland for over 24 years.  She is a leader in the 39ers Senior Group – working on the board and ensuring that newcomers are always welcome and have the opportunity to get involved.  She has volunteered for Give Kids the World and still knits hats and booties for the newborn nursery at Florida Hospital.
Charlotte Ettinger Getz RotenbergCharlotte Rotenberg, 88, was the youngest of 5 children born in Miami Beach, Florida.  She became involved with community service a Red Cross volunteer nurse as St. Vincent’s Hospital in Miami during WWII.   She also was a volunteer for the National Council of Jewish Women.  In 1963 she first moved to College Park, Florida.   She became involved in the Jewish Federation as well as the civil rights movement – working with Mabel Butler to sign up voters in the Parramore area.  She was the Jewish Federation of Greater Orlando’s second recipient of their annual “Woman of Choice” award.  In 1969, she married her late husband Harold Rotenberg and began a new journey that included travel and philanthropy.  For her 80th birthday, she sent an ambulance to Safed, Israel to honor her parents.  She also started a foundation for a medical center in Safed to provide needed medical equipment that was not provided by the government when the center was built.  She continues to support many local organizations including Kinneret, Jewish Federation, and the ambulances in Israel.