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Santa Barbara Hillel Bestows Hall of Fame Honors on Amerikaner, Rubin

Jewish organization celebrates two longtime members' leadership and support

Steve Amerikaner, a partner at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, and longtime community activist Selma Rubin were inducted into the Santa Barbara Hillel Hall of Fame on Sunday.

Serving students at UCSB and SBCC, Santa Barbara Hillel provides a home away from home for Jewish young adults and their friends. The 40-year-old group is affiliated with Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life, which has chapters at more than 500 college and university campuses around the world.

For each of the past 10 years, Santa Barbara Hillel has honored two of its members with induction in its Hall of Fame, for leadership and support of the nonprofit organization.

Rabbi Evan Goodman said Amerikaner and Rubin “exemplify the values we aspire to teach our students.”

“With their dedication to making a difference in the world, their commitment to the Jewish community, and their steady leadership and guidance, Steve and Selma are wonderful role models to us all,” he said.

Amerikaner is a past president of the Hillel Community Advisory Board and led a successful campaign to secure multiyear major gifts to Hillel. He also was board president of the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara from 1988 to 1992 and led the Jewish Community Relations Council from 1987 to 1988.

At Brownstein, he is a member of the firm’s real estate and natural resources groups and focuses on land use and environmental issues.

With her trademark hats and oversize glasses, Rubin, 95, has been a tireless community leader on issues involving the environment, peace, social justice, civil liberties, health care, youth and seniors.

Attorney Steve Amerikaner is a past president of the Santa Barbara Hillel Community Advisory Board and a longtime leader in local Jewish organizations.
Attorney Steve Amerikaner is a past president of the Santa Barbara Hillel Community Advisory Board and a longtime leader in local Jewish organizations. (Robert Bernstein photo)

Hillel honored Rubin for her work on behalf of the Milton Roisman Jewish Student Center, 781 Embarcadero Del Mar. Goodman credited her with arranging for the involvement of professional fundraiser David Dietrich and architect Dennis Thompson in the project, which resulted in Hillel’s new home.

She joined the Hillel Community Advisory Board in 1988 and, in all, has served on more than 40 boards of directors in Santa Barbara.

At the ceremony, Amerikaner was presented by Martie Levy while Rubin was presented by Rabbi Arthur Gross-Schaefer. Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, and Santa Barbara County Supervisors Salud Carbajal, Doreen Farr and Janet Wolf were on hand to present proclamations from Congress and the Board of Supervisors, respectively.

Rabbi Steve Cohen of Congregation B’nai B’rith paid tribute to longtime Hillel supporter Harold Richards, who died last year at age 92. An almond tree was dedicated in Richards’ honor in the Roisman Center’s courtyard.

Click here for more photos from Sunday’s Santa Barbara Hillel Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Click here for more information on Santa Barbara Hillel.

Noozhawk publisher Bill Macfadyen can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk.

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