Three Israeli teenagers – 17-year-olds Shira Ahissar and Yadid Algavi, along with 16-year-old Shahar Gvirtz – became international celebrities in Israel earlier this summer when they brought home top prizes in the “World Series” of science fairs, the prestigious Intel International Science and Engineering Fair competition. 

The three science stars won the right to represent Israel by first scoring top awards in Israel’s national competition sponsored by Bloomfield Science Museum in Jerusalem – an institution supported the past five years by the Winnick Family Foundation.  The Bloomfield Science Museum is one of the flagship projects of the Jerusalem Foundation which has an unmatched, 40-year track record in nurturing philanthropy projects in Israel.

Said Foundation founder Gary Winnick: “In a conflicted world hungry for peace, science and technology are the great levelers. The constant goal of the Bloomfield Science Museum is to arouse curiosity among all, without distinction, who visit there and to deepen their understanding of a natural world and human technological capabilities – shared by all who share this planet.”

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Extended by popular demand was one of the most well-attended shows in the Yeshiva University Museum’s Winnick Gallery, located in Manhattan at the Center for Jewish History. The long-running show featured the life work of L.T. Syms, one of the country’s most respected figurative sculptors.

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More than 2,000 Teach For America teachers, called corps members, have taught in L.A.-area public schools, reaching some 160,000 students. By 2010, program administrators expect that there will be nearly 1,500 alumni pursuing educational careers in the Los Angeles area, 60 will be running schools, and 10 or more will hold elective office.

When teacher Chris Akel applied to join Teach For America, he was ready for the challenge of teaching in an underserved urban or rural community – something very unlike the surburban neighborhoods he grew up in on the Cumberland Plateau of Tennessee.

Gary Winnick, Chairman of Pacific Capital Group and Founder of the Winnick Family Foundation, said: “We have been pleased to support Teach For America for the past six years. L.A. was one of the organization’s original charter regions and since then, more than 2,000 Teach For America teachers, called corps members, have taught in L.A.-area public schools, reaching some 160,000 students. Teach For America is a much-respected national program, but it has our Foundation’s interest because it has been making a particular and major impact on elementary and secondary education in Los Angeles since the program’s inception in 1990.”

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