Rabbi Shragie Myers, executive director of the Yeshiva, said the dinner showcases the partnership between private philanthropists, business and community leaders, and the general public for a great cause.
Yeshiva Beth Yehudah’s annual dinner, this year themed “An Evening of Hope & Renewal,” takes place 4:30 p.m. Oct. 24 at the Detroit Marriott Renaissance Center.
The dinner, an annual Detroit event for more than 50 years, is attended by thousands and graced by famous local, national and international leaders in politics, business and philanthropy.
In 2020, the COVID pandemic halted the in-person annual dinner, which for the first time was held virtually. The theme for 2020, “An Evening of Unity,” was a natural choice for the event, whose dais is graced annually by a most diverse group of leaders from across the community and the political spectrum. With sights set on bringing communities together, united to bring positive change to the world, the event featured guest remarks from several thought leaders, including Jamie Dimon, CEO of JP Morgan Chase; Reverend Dr. Wendell Anthony of the NAACP; and President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden, who made surprise back-to-back appearances. The event was viewed by 500,000 people.
This Year’s Honoree
Joining her name to the who’s who list of past honorees and speakers at the Annual Dinner will be General Motors Chair and CEO Mary Barra, who is this year’s recipient of the Outstanding Leadership Award, the Yeshiva’s highest honor.
Barra began her career with GM in 1980 as a General Motors Institute (Kettering University) co-op student at the Pontiac Motor Division. She was named CEO in 2014. Under her leadership, GM envisions a world with zero crashes, to save lives; zero emissions, so future generations can inherit a healthier planet; and zero congestion, so customers get back a precious commodity — time.
She is focused on improving the customer experience and strengthening GM’s core vehicle and services business, while also working to lead the transformation of personal mobility through advanced technologies like connectivity, electrification and autonomous driving.
“I appreciate Yeshiva Beth Yehudah’s commitment to fostering education and growth at all stages of life, and I am honored to join the ranks of Outstanding Leadership Award recipients,” Barra said. “I have learned that success is always a team effort, and much of my own has been paved by incredible mentors and the support of great colleagues at General Motors.”
More Than ‘Just A School’
For more than 100 years, Yeshiva Beth Yehudah has provided Torah and secular education that shapes bright young minds into exceptional, compassionate leaders. But it’s more than just a school. It’s a place where community members come together to grow, connect and be inspired. Its Partners Detroit program gives Jewish adults the chance to enjoy enlightening and invigorating Torah study, regardless of their background or level of experience. And its Scholars Kollel program enables adult Torah scholars to dedicate their time and energy to learning while serving as ambassadors of Torah teachings and role models to our community.
“The dinner has been a foundation for opportunities to introduce the Jewish community to opinion leaders in our broader community and allow them to look through the lens the Yeshiva plays in greater Detroit. It’s like Abraham’s Tent — welcoming to all with room for everyone,” said General Chair Mark Davidoff, also an honoree in 2018.
Rabbi Shragie Myers, executive director of the Yeshiva, said the dinner showcases the partnership between private philanthropists, business and community leaders, and the general public for a great cause. “We’ve always been proud of the diversity of the crowd — both Jewish and non-Jewish — and that everyone on that dais stands for unity,” he said.
“We open a window to the Jewish community for so many others to look through,” he added, “and what they get is a glimpse of the Yeshiva and all it encompasses, from the youngest children to the elderly and everyone in between. When they see that, people, in a word, are uplifted and want to be associated with it.
“Everyone in the Detroit Jewish community has a place with the Yeshiva, either through Partners Detroit, communal events or the annual dinner, which breaks down barriers and invites so many people who might not otherwise feel welcome, to come into the tent,” Myers said.
This year’s dinner is planned and organized by Dinner Chair Steve Steinour, president and CEO of Huntington Bancshares and last year’s Outstanding Leadership Awardee. General Chairs are community philanthropists Jim and Nancy Grosfeld and Mark Davidoff, president and CEO of the Fisher Group; Event Chair is Jerry Norcia, president and CEO of DTE; Honorary Chair is Ambassador David. T. Fischer, chairman emeritus of the Suburban Collection; and Campaign Chair is Sandy Pierce of Huntington Bank.
Sponsorship opportunities and tickets are available at www.ybydinner.org. For additional information, call (248)-663-8299.