Lester S. Okeon AZA: Past and Present
We Know This is Long But Please Educate Yourself on Our Wonderful Chapter!!
In late January of 1959, nine Alephs met to establish a fourth AZA chapter in Memphis, assisted by their advisor, Mr. Stanley Okeon. Three boys from each of the three AZA chapters decided to petition for an Aleph Club Chapter. Ben Reisman was elected chapter Godol. The chapter was named for Lester Sherman Okeon, a member of all three chapters, who served as Godol, won Best All Around, became a District Seven Officer, and was active in the naming of Fortas AZA, for which he served as Godol for two months to get it started. Lester Sherman Okeon died tragically at the age of 21 in a government plane crash after being selected to deliver the mathematical computations for the space age. Okeon AZA members visited his parents, Harry and Frieda Okeon, on a frequent basis and included them in Okeon activities until their deaths in 1978 and 1997, respectively. Mr. and Mrs. Okeon were and always will be an important and beloved part of Okeon’s history.
In August of 1959, the chapter selected its second administration; Ronnie Gilman was elected Godol, and Joel Cook was elected S’gan. At that time, the chapter began to function as a full-scale chapter. In November, Okeon was presented its charter and its number -- 1204.
There were 21 members, including Jerry Diamond, who was then Regional Aleph Godol. The first two Advisors were Mr. Stanley Okeon and Dr. Joseph Parker. Okeon held its first Sweetheart and Awards Banquet on February 26, 1960. Joel Cook was named Godol, and Harold Fineberg was named S’gan. Miss Judy Keslensky was crowned our first Sweetheart. The Lester S. Okeon Memorial Best All-Around Member Award was first given to Ronnie Gilman that year.
At District Convention, Jerry Diamond, outgoing District Godol, led Okeon members on to glorious acclaim. Later that summer, Jerry Diamond was elected by acclamation to serve as Grand Aleph Godol at the International Order, the highest office in the Aleph Zadik Aleph.
Gary Blaiss was elected Godol, and Malcolm Hinden was elected S’gan in July of 1960. At the Regional Convention, Okeon placed second in the newspaper contest, second in the oratory contest, and Miss Judy Keslensky, our Sweetheart, was elected Regional N’siah.
On February 25, 1961, Okeon held its second Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet. Malcolm Hinden was elected Godol and Marshall Weissberger, S’gan. Mimi Scheinberg was crowned the new Sweetheart, and Gary Blaiss was named Best All-Around Member. The delegates to Regional Convention were a smashing success. Malcolm Hinden was elected Maskir, and Gerald Padawer was appointed District Yearbook Chairman.
Marshall Weissberger was elected Godol and Lewis Loskovitz was elected S’gan at elections in July. A new method of programming was initiated during this term. A change in chapter election brought about the Third Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet in November 1961. Alvin Jafee was elected Godol and Lewis Loskovitz was re-elected S’gan. Miss Carol Cooper was crowned our new Sweetheart, and Malcolm Hinden was named Best-All-Around Member. Mr. Rubin Bredow joined Mr. Stanley Okeon and Dr. Joseph Parker as our new Advisor.
In May 1962, Gerald Padawer was elected Godol and Charles Rafael became S’gan. The programming and athletics were the best the chapter had ever seen, and Okeon captured the JCC Softball League Championship.
Miss Janice Green was elected Sweetheart at the Fourth Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet in November, 1962. Mark Lieberman was installed as Godol, and Bruce Dan was elected S’gan. Alvin Jaffe was named Best All-Around Member. Janice, our Sweetheart, served as the BBG Convention Chairman. We received the Correspondence Award and the Single Service Award. We also placed in the Newspaper Contest and third in the SWV award for programming.
May of 1963 saw Charles Rafael as Godol and Bruce Dan as S’gan. The chapter gave our two new advisors, Mr. Sidney Schlossberg and Mr. Ronald Harkavy, a traditional Okeon welcome. Soon after, District Convention was stormed by Okeon with bucket beating at their sides, and Okeon won the Minimum Essentials Award. In August of 1963, Okeon held its Fifth Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet. Bruce Dan became Godol, and Mike Kibel was elected S’gan. The Best All-Around Member was Charles Rafael, and Lisa Goldman was crowned Sweetheart. At this time, Okeon was blessed with another advisor, Mr. Louis Kirschner. At Regional Convention, Nathan Gold was elected Regional Maskir. In January 1964, Gerald Padawer was elected to a second term as Godol, the first in Okeon history. Nathan Gold was elected S’gan. In February at a party at Nathan’s home, Miss Sharon Weiss was chosen as our new Sweetheart, In May, Alvin Green was chosen Godol.
In May of 1964, Robert Green was elected Godol, and Steve Gold was elected S’gan. Miss Evelyn Chafetz was chosen as our Sweetheart at the home of Steve Romeo. At District Convention, Robert Green was elected as delegate to International Convention and was elected to attend ILTC. In this summer, Okeon held its first annual Summertime ‘65. Steve Goler and Eddie Green served as co-chairmen for the affair. In November 1965, the Seventh Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet was held. Miss Evelyn Chafetz became our first Sweetheart to be re-elected. Mike Romeo became Godol, and Eddie Green was chosen S’gan. Alvin Green was named winner of the Best All-Around Member Award. We once again received a great Advisor, Herman Goldberger. With Robert Green serving as Norman Busch Award Chairman, Okeon stormed Convention in Biloxi. Evelyn’s scrapbook took second place, and with the ringing of buckets in our ears, our delegation captured the newly revised Norman Busch Award. In May of 1966, Steve Goler became Godol, and Bill Cohn became S’gan. At the home of Charles Lewis, Miss Chafetz handed a dozen red roses and the sweetheart pin to our newly elected Sweetheart, Gail Kirschner. Once again, Okeon held its Second Annual Show and Dance, Summertime ’66, with Mark Kaminsky serving as chairman. Herby and Solly Dan received the award for Best Summertime Workers.
March of 1968 saw Okeon welcome a new advisor, Dr. Michael Usdan, an ex-Washer boy, to our ranks.
Okeon held its Sweetheart and chapter elections in May. Steve Bilsky was chosen as Okeon’s new Godol, and Bill Monroe was chosen S’gan. During those same elections, Susan Burson became the third Sweetheart in Okeon’s history to be re-elected.
The Memphis B.B.Y.O. elections came and once again Okeon led the way. Ben Sissman was elected the Council’s president, and our Sweetheart, Susan Burson, became vice-president.
The District 7 Convention was held in Shreveport, LA, during the month of June. Cotton States Regional elections were held there. Skip Rosson was elected to the office of Regional Aleph S’gan, and Bill Monroe became Regional Aleph Ahava. Also at that Convention, Okeon was one of four chapters in the District to receive the Minimum Essentials Award. The banner of Okeon was held high as our debaters took second place in the District Debate Contest.
During the month of July, Okeon presented Summertime ‘68, guided by co-chairmen Herby Dan and Michael Blaiss. Barry Cagan received the Best Summertime Worker Award.
Okeon was again honored in 1970, when Bruce Cohen was named beau of Levin BBG, and Philip Ben was named beau of Reena BBG.
In April 1970, Marty Newman was elected Godol, and Howie Wagerman, S’gan. Also, Miss Saralyn Kaplan became the fourth Okeon Sweetheart to be re-named. During the term, Bruce Cohen was named beau of Levin BBG; Ronnie Lefkowitz became beau of Reena BBG, and Hugh Steckol became beau of Bluff City BBG. In the BBYO elections, Okeon members again took honors; Hugh Steckol was elected BBYO President and Marty Newman, City AlT Dad.
That summer, Okeon was once again honored by naming one of its past members, Alvin Green, as one of its
advisors. Alvin had served as chapter Godol in 1964. With usual hard work and spirit, Okeon presented its sixth annual
Summertime Show and Dance. Bruce Dan and Howie Wagerman were co-chairmen of the event. The Best Summertime Worker Award was presented to the girls in the show.
In September 1970, the Okeon softball team won the championship for the first time since 1963.
At the twelfth Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet, Miss Nancy Smith was named new Sweetheart. Howie Wagerman was installed as Godol, and Alan Karchmer as S’gan. Marty Newman received the Best All-Around Member Award.
The Okeon Bucket Brigade ‘70 stormed Cotton States Regional Convention bringing home second place in the scrapbook contest, and Alan Karchmer placed second in oratory. At that Convention, we became brother chapter with Rodfay Shalom AZA of New Orleans.
In June 1971, Miss Karen Clemons was named the new Sweetheart; Alan Karchmer was installed as Godol and Howard Silver as S’gan. At District 7 Convention, we were honored by having Hugh Steckol serve as District Convention Chairman and by having Alan Karchmer elected Cotton States Regional Ahavah.
In July of 1971, in honor of the thirteenth year since the chapter’s founding in 1959, Okeon commemorated the event by conducting services on Saturday, the twenty-fourth, at Baron Hirsch Synagogue.
That summer Okeon once again won the softball championship that then led into the seventh annual Summertime Show and Dance. Irby Bilsky and Jonathan Plitman were co-chairmen, and Allan Kaplan won the Best Summertime Worker Award.
While celebrating the Thirteenth Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet held in November 1971, Howie Wagerman was installed as Godol and Irby Bilsky as S’gan. Howie Wagerman was awarded the Best All-Around Member Award, and Miss Karen Clemons became the fifth Sweetheart to be re-named. Howard Clemons was named Best First Year Member.
In the BBYO elections, Paul Finebaum was elected as Council Vice-President. Jonathan Plitman was appointed Regional Aleph Mazkir-Gizbor.
Okeon AZA once again made its presence known at Regional Convention at Camp Sumatanga, AL. In addition to winning the Norman Busch Award with Mesch AZA of Birmingham, we also won a Program of the Year Award, and third place in scrapbook. Howard Katz took third place in oratory, and Josh Anzaroot placed in the checker tournament.
In April of 1972, Josh Anzaroot served as Coordinator for the Memphis-New Orleans Conclave held in Memphis. In the BBYO elections soon afterward, Paul Finebaum was elected president, and Josh Anzaroot was elected Advisory Board Representative.
In the chapter’s spring elections, Irby Bilsky was elected Godol, and Jake Lipsey, S’gan. At the Sweetheart party in May 1972, Miss Elise Saripkin was named new Sweetheart. At District Convention in Shreveport, Okeon won the Minimum Essentials Award, and the chapter was honored by three members serving on the new Cotton States AZA Board: Paul Finebaum as Regional Aleph Godol, Sheldon Dan as Regional Aleph Mazkir, and Jonathan Plitman as Regional Judaic and Israeli Affairs Chairman.
During that summer, Okeon AZA welcomed a new advisor, Stuart Zalowitz. In July 1972, Okeon AZA presented the eighth annual Summertime ‘72 under the chairmanship of Howard Katz and Howard Clemons. Mark Clemons was awarded the Best Summertime Worker Award. Cotton States Regional Steering was held in Memphis in October 1972. Howard Katz served as Regional Steering Coordinator.
In November 1972, Okeon held its fourteenth annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet. Howard Katz was installed as Godol and Howard Clemons as S’gan. The Best All-Around Member Award went to Irby Bilsky. At the end of that evening, Miss Laurie Jalenak was named the new Sweetheart. Barry Paller was named Best First Year Member. In the BBYO elections, our former Sweetheart, Miss Karen Clemons, was named Council President. Okeon AZA again sent its delegates to Regional Convention at Camp Sumatanga, AL, where we received the Program of the Year Award.
In March 1973, Okeon again welcomed a new advisor, Melvin Katz. In the BBYO elections, our Sweetheart, Laurie Jalenak, was elected Corresponding Secretary, and our Godol, Howard Katz, was elected Advisory Board Representative. In May, Miss Sally Rhodes was named Sweetheart. Howard Clemons was installed as Godol, and Sheldon Smith as S’gan. Also during this time, Sheldon Smith was named beau of Reena BBG, and Barry Paller was named beau of Finebaum BBG.
In July 1973, after much preparation, Okeon presented the ninth annual Summertime ‘73 under the chairmanship of Jake Lipsey and Scott Lissnor. Sheldon Smith was presented the Best Summertime Worker Award.
In October 1973, Okeon participated in helping Israel by having a “Save Israel Dance,” and over $1,500 was given to Israel.
In Okeon’s fall elections in November 1973, Jake Lipsey was elected Godol and Larry Evensky, S’gan.
In December 1973, Okeon held the fifteenth annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet. Sandy Molasky was chosen the chapter’s Sweetheart. The Best All-Around Member Award went to Jake Lipsey, and the Best First Year Member went to Michael Schneider and Gary Polsky. Also in December, Okeon stormed into Regional Convention along with their buckets and brought home second place in the scrapbook contest and first place in oratory by Tom Marks.
In 1974, Howard Katz, was named beau of Levin BBG. In February, Barry Paller was elected Godol, and Lester Katz, S’gan. In June 1974, Esther Sue Hanover was named Sweetheart, and Okeon also won first place in the scrapbook contest at District Convention.
In August 1974, Okeon AZA presented a very special tenth annual Summertime ‘74 under the chairmanship of Barry Paller and Sheldon Smith. A fantastic film production was presented along with the show and dance celebrating the fiftieth anniversary of AZA. The Best Summertime Worker Award was given to Brad Magdovitz and Michael Schneider. Rusty Discher was elected Godol of Memphis BBYO.
In September 1974, Michael Schneider was elected Godol and Howard Weil, S’gan. After Aleph Godol Michael Schneider was installed, the chapter began to see programming the likes of which have not been practiced for several years.
The New Okeon AZA was unveiled on December 22, 1974, at the Cotton States Regional Convention. Okeon stormed the Convention with their buckets led by Aleph Godol Michael Schneider. The chapter won second place scrapbook and first place oratory by Sam Blaiss. The showing was impressive and humbled many of Okeon’s adversaries.
On February 1, 1975, Okeon held its sixteenth Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet. The Best All- Around Member Award went to Past President, Barry Paller. Miss Esther Sue Hanover was named Sweetheart for the second time. On February 22, 1975, Brad Magdovitz was elected beau of Finebaum BBG.
In March 1975, Michael Schneider was elected to his second term as Godol, and Ronnie King was elected S’gan. The chapter programming was maintained at a high standard. Also, Brad Magdovitz was elected Council Godol; Sam Ettingoff as Council Moreh, and Ross Felt as Council Calendar Coordinator.
In June 1975, Okeon stormed District Convention under the leadership of Godol Michael Schneider. Okeon showed increased prominence at this Convention. Michael Schneider ran for District Aleph Godol, but was defeated. Later that month, Rieva Rosenberg was named our new Sweetheart. Aleph Schneider was named 1975 Regional Convention Coordinator.
In July 1975, Okeon held its eleventh annual Summertime ‘75 under the chairmanship of Ronnie King and Howard Weil. This Summertime boasted a specially written show. This show was written and directed by Sy Rosenberg, a Las Vegas producer. The Best Summertime Worker was awarded to Brad Magdovitz for the second year, making him the first Aleph in Okeon history to win this award twice.
Aleph Godol Michael Schneider represented the chapter at International Convention. Michael was proud to bring back with him the Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award. This was the fifth Monsky in Okeon’s 17 years.
On September 1, 1975, Brad Magdovitz was elected Godol and Sam Blaiss S’gan. In December of 1975, Okeon AZA stormed the Cotton States Regional Convention with twenty-three members and thirty-five buckets. The delegation, led by Godol Brad Magdovitz, brought back the Gary Goldman Best All Around Chapter Award. Michael Schneider served as the Regional Convention Chairman.
On January 10, 1976, Okeon held its 17th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Hyatt Regency Ridgeway. Miss Rieva Rosenberg was re-named Sweetheart, and Michael Schneider, past Godol, won the Best All-Around Member Award. In March of 1976, Brad Magdovitz was re-elected Godol and Michael Dlugach, S’gan. Also, Ross Felt was elected Council Godol; Sam Blaiss, Council Moreh, and Aaron Miller, Council Treasurer.
In June of 1976, Okeon stormed District Convention under the leadership of Aleph Godol Brad Magdovitz. Brad also ran for District S’gan Shanee, but was defeated. Later that month, Miss Michelle Bernatsky was named our new Sweetheart.
On August 1, 1976, Okeon held its 12th annual Summertime ‘76 under the chairmanship of Aaron Miller and Eugene Klebanoff. The show was entitled “Thanks For the Memory” and was written by Denni Cowles and Rhonda Bilsky. The Best Summertime Worker Award went to Donald Edmond.
Aleph Godol Brad Magdovitz represented the chapter at International Convention. Brad was proud to bring back with him the Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award, one of only 17 given that year. This was the sixth Monsky Award in Okeon’s 18 years.
On September 19, 1976, Steve Twersky was elected Godol and Jay King S’gan. In December 1976, Okeon brought home second place in scrapbook and newspaper, “The Okeon Bucket.” Okeon AZA stormed the Cotton States Regional Convention with eighteen members and twenty-three buckets.
On February 5, 1977, Okeon held its 18th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Anshei Sphard Synagogue. Miss Michelle Bernatsky was renamed Sweetheart, and Brad Magdovitz, past Godol, was chosen to receive the Best All-Around Member Award. Jeff Zitron received the Best First Year Member Award, In March 1977, Jay King was elected Godol and Steve Kotler, S’gan.
In June 1977, Okeon sent Godol Jay King and Moreh Jeff Zitron to DLTC. Brad Magdovitz met Jay and Jeff for District Convention and brought back first place in scrapbook and newspaper, “The Okeon Bucket.” Later in June, Miss Sharon Magdovitz was named our new Sweetheart. Also in this month, Ronnie King was named Most Valuable Player in football through the Memphis JCC.
On July 31, 1977, Okeon held its 13th annual Summertime ‘77 under the chairmanship of Steve Twersky and Jeff Rosenberg. The show was entitled “The Bong Show” and was written by Sy Rosenberg. The Best Summertime Worker Award went to Daniel Notowitz.
In August 1977, Okeon picked up their 14 new AlTs. Later that month, they named Alan Harkavy, President, and Glenn Rosen, Vice-President, of the AIT class. Ginger Gruber and Michelle Tannenbaum were named their Little Sisters.
In September 1977, Bruce Landau was elected Godol and Andy Forman, S’gan. In December 1977, Okeon AZA stormed Cotton States Regional Convention with 17 members and 17 buckets. Okeon received the Most Spirited Chapter Award. Jeff Zitron was elected Regional S’gan Rishone.
On January 7, 1978, Okeon held its 19th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet. Miss Sharon Magdovitz was renamed our Sweetheart, and Steve Twersky, past Godol, received the Best All-Around Member Award. The award for the Best First Year Member was given to Curtis Wald.
Andy Forman was elected our Aleph Godol in April of 1978, and Howard Scheuner was elected to serve as S’gan. Mark Bilsky was elected beau of Finebaum BBG.
In June of 1978, Okeon sent then Aleph Godol Andy Forman to DLTC. Later that month, Jeff Zitron and Howard Scheuner met Andy at District Convention and then proudly brought back the Maximum Credentials Award. Miss Pam Gronauer was named as Sweetheart later that summer.
On July 23, 1978, Okeon held its 14th annual Summertime ‘78 under the chairmenship of Jeff Zitron and Mark Bilsky. The show was entitled “Shabbos Fever” and was written and directed by Steve Lebovitz and Edith Levitz. The Best Summertime Worker Award went to Greg Graflund and Lee Sacharin.
In August 1978, Okeon received recognition by winning the coveted Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award at International Convention. This was the 7th Monsky in 20 years. Also in August, Okeon welcomed 7 AlTs and named Ralph Singer AIT Godol and Livio Saharovici AIT S’gan. Roz Kriger and Stacy Elster were named Little Sisters.
In September 1978, Mark Bilsky was elected Godol and Alan Harkavy S’gan. In December 1978, Okeon AZA stormed Cotton States Regional Convention with 20 members and 21 buckets. Okeon received first place scrapbook and the Gary Goldman Best Chapter Award. Aleph Godol Mark Bilsky was elected to the office of Regional Aleph Godol. Later that month, Andy Forman was re-elected to succeed Mark as Godol of Okeon.
On January 13, 1979, Okeon held its 20th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Holiday Inn Rivermont. Pam Gronauer awarded the Sweetheart crown to Miss Ginger Gruber. Mark Bilsky, past Godol, won the Best All-Around Member Award, and Alan Harkavy received the Best First Year Member Award.
In March of 1979, Glenn Rosen was elected Godol, and Andy Saslawsky was elected S’gan. Alan Harkavy was elected beau of Brenner BBG, and Jerry Hayden was elected beau of Finebaum BBG.
In June of 1979, Okeon sent 6 members to DLTC and District Convention. Okeon received the Maximum Credentials Award.
On August 5, 1979, Okeon held its 15th annual Summertime Show under the chairmenship of Jerry Hayden and Tod Singer. The show was entitled “Supermuench” and was written and directed by Steve Lebovitz, with Jeff Rosenblum in the title role. The Best Summertime Worker Award was presented to Kevin Scheuner, and Andy Forman was the first recipient of the Harry Okeon Memorial Award.
In August of 1979, Okeon received the coveted Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award at International Convention. This was Okeon’s 8th award in 21 years. In September, Okeon welcomed 13 new AlTs. Alan Tannenbaum was elected president of the AITs, and David Steinberg was elected S’gan. The AITs elected Keely Starr and Leslie Snyder as their new Little Sisters.
In September of 1979, Tod Singer was elected Godol, and Wayne Bilsky was elected S’gan. On December 9, 1979, Okeon won the Football Championship Game for the first time EVER!
December 23th to 25th of 1979 saw that year’s Cotton States Regional Convention being held in Memphis. Okeon had 16 members attending the Convention and brought in many awards, including second place Social/Athletic for the Annual Summertime charity show.
On January 18, 1980, the 21st Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet was held at the Holiday Inn Rivermont. Andy Dattel and Livio Saharovici were Banquet Chairmen. Michelle Gerber was re-elected Sweetheart.
In March 1980, Wayne Bilsky was elected Godol with Andy Dattel capturing the office of Aleph S’gan Rishone. The title was changed from Aleph S’gan as a new office was added to the executive board, that of 2nd vice-president. Jeff Levine was elected to serve as the first Aleph S’gan Shenit.
In May 1980, Sweetheart Party was held with festivities including a picnic, swimming and a hayride. Michelle Washer was chosen as the new Sweetheart.
June 1980 saw the beginning of Summertime ‘80, with a show entitled “Star Schlepp,” once again written and directed by Steve Lebovitz. The chairmen for Summertime were Greg Graflund and Kevin Scheuner. In August 1980, Jeff Halpern, who saw the chapter win its 11th Henry Monsky Best all Around Chapter Award, represented Okeon at International Convention.
Regional Convention 1980 was held in Birmingham, and Okeon was there in force. In addition to trying for first place in Social/Athletic Program of the Year with Summertime, Okeon won awards for folds in all of the other areas of programming as well. Jeff Halpern was elected to the office of Regional S’gan Shenit.
January 1981 brought another Banquet to Okeon’s history, this one held at the Anshei Sphard Synagogue. The band was Nazareth, and Michelle Washer was re-elected as Sweetheart. The chairmen were Lee Sacharin and Aron Ritterband.
Soon alter Banquet, elections were held in March of 1981. Kent Gordon was elected to the office of Godol, and Todd Harrick was elected to the office of S’gan Rishone.
Sweetheart Party was held in June of 1981. The Chairmen were David Steinberg and Steve Ballin. The party was held indoors at the Ballins’ because of rain. Susan Bisno was elected to be the new Sweetheart.
Summer, of course, brought Summertime. This show was very special to the chapter, as, for the first time, the show was written wholly by Okeon members. Called simply “OKEON,” the show was the presentation of chapter activities and raised over $1,500 for charity. The chairmen were Jeff Miner and Jeff Levine.
At the end of August 1981, elections were held once again. Jeff Miner became the new Godol, and Andy Dattel was elected for a repeat performance as S’gan Rishone. Rush was a great success that year, and Okeon impressed prospective AITs greatly, bringing in a record 16 new members.
To end the year 1981, Okeon held a spirit weekend in preparation for the upcoming Regional Convention. The Chairman for the weekend was Wayne Bilsky, who was also designated “spirit chairman” for the Convention. When Convention did come, Okeon was well-represented and brought home 8 awards, including first place in Social/Athletic for Summertime. These awards were added to Okeon’s 12th Henry Monsky Award to round off a very good year.
At the 23rd Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet, held in January 1982, Susan Bisno was renamed Sweetheart. Todd Harrick and Paul Heitman were chairmen for Banquet, which was held at the Four Seasons Club House. Jeff Miner received the Best All-Around Member Award, and Wayne Bilsky was presented with the Shield of David Award. Shortly after Banquet, elections were held, and Jeff Levine was elected Godol. Jeff Dlugach was elected S’gan Rishone.
In June 1982, Sweetheart Party was held. The party was highlighted by a hayride and Sweetheart circle, when Allison Serenco was named Sweetheart for the coming term. On August 1, 1982, Summertime ‘82 was held, and it was very successful, raising over $1,500 for charity. The show, which was chaired by Scott Weiss and Jeff Dlugach, was once again written solely by a group of Okeon members.
At the end of the summer, elections were held, and David Steinberg was elected Godol, and Howie Manis was elected S’gan Rishone. The annual rush coordinated by AIT Dads Michael Barrach and Todd Harrick brought in 13 new AlTs.
The 1982 Regional Convention was held in Memphis from December 26 to New Year’s Eve. It was coordinated by Okeon member Todd Harrick and former Okeon Sweetheart Susan Bisno. Okeon was very successful at this Convention and received two International Program of the Year Awards; one for Summertime ‘81, and one for Religious Services at the B’nai B’rith Home and Hospital for the Aged. Okeon also received a great number of Regional awards, including first place for Summertime ‘82. Banquet ‘83 was held at the Hyatt Regency and saw the naming of Sherry Brooks to Sweetheart for six months. David Steinberg received the Best All-Around Member Award.
In June of ‘83, Sherry Brooks was re-elected to a second term at a Sweetheart Party, which featured a dance and Sweetheart Circle. On July 31, Summertime ‘83 was held and proved to be one of the most entertaining shows in the chapter’s history. The show was entitled “Mannie,” which was a take-off of the musical production “Annie.” The show was chaired by Todd Harrick and Jeff Dlugach and written by Mrs. Emily Baer. At the end of the summer, elections were held, and Neal Bisno was elected Godol, and Stewart Halpem was elected S’gan Rishone. AIT Dads Brian Turetzky and Scott Weiss coordinated the annual rush program. It was a great success and brought in 11 new AlTs.
The 1983 Regional Convention was held in Knoxville, where Okeon received an impressive 8 awards: first place Social for Summertime, first place Cultural for the Leo N. Levi Hospital Visit, first place Community Service for B’nai B’rith Home Services, first place AZA Scrapbook, third in AZA Newspaper, Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award, third place for Soviet Jewry Program and other individual awards, such as an oratory award for Howard Zimmerman and Regional Aleph of the Year for our Godol, Neal Bisno. Shortly after Convention, Okeon received a new advisor, Andy Forman. Elections were held, and Neal Bisno was re-elected Godol, and Michael Zellner was elected S’gan Rishone.
Banquet ‘84 was held at Anshei Sphard Synagogue in February. Howie Manis and Greg Usdan were chairmen. Aleph Godol Neal Bisno received the Best All-Around Member, and Robin Bender was named Sweetheart. In June, Sweetheart Party was held. Robin Bender was re-elected Sweetheart at a poolside dance at the JCC. Also, elections were held, and Howard Zimmerman was elected Godol.
On August 5, Summertime ‘84 was held. The show was entitled “Same Time Next Summer” and was about Okeon’s past and present. The chairmen of the show were Howie Manis, Brian Turetzky and Howard Zimmerman. The show was directed by Mr. Sam Rosenblum. At rush, Okeon received eight new AlTs. The AlT Dads were Greg Usdan and Henry Faber.
The 1984 Regional Convention was held in Chattanooga. The Chapter received some awards, and the AITs won an impressive five awards on their own. Neal Bisno received co-Best Four Year Member, and our Sweetheart, Robin Bender, was elected Regional N’siah.
Michael Zellner and David Ostrow organized Banquet 1985. Jodie Goldberger was elected our new Sweetheart. Brian Turetzky received the Best All-Around Member Award. After Banquet, Greg Usdan began his term as Godol. On August 4, Okeon’s annual Summertime ‘85 was held. The show was entitled “Remember When” and was planned by David Ostrow and Craig Barrach. Jodie Goldberger was re-elected Sweetheart, and the newly established Best Ad Sales Award was given to Brian Turetzky. After Summertime 1985, David Ostrow was elected Godol, and Marshall Oser was elected S’gan. In addition to the new officers, Okeon received another advisor, Brian Barrach. Fifteen AITs were later added to the roster under the leadership of AIT Dads Eric Elster and Jonathan Harris. Intake, entitled “Okeon’s Wet and Wild Weekend,” also gave Okeon two Little Sisters, Claire Angel and Marcy Berlanstein.
At Regional Convention ‘85 held at Joe Wheeler State Park in Alabama, Okeon received many awards, including first place for Summertime and the Henry Monsky Award. David Ostrow was elected Regional Aleph S’gan.
Banquet ‘86 was planned by Russell Blumenthal and Henry Faber and held at Anshei Sphard Synagogue. David Ostrow received the Best All-Around Member Award, and Jennifer Less was named the new Sweetheart.
In March 1986, Michael Zellner was elected Godol, and Kippy Josel was elected S’gan. On August 3rd, Summertime ‘86 was held. The show was entitled “The Dance of the Onions or Are There Really Such Things as Jewish Cowboys in Europe” and was planned by Richard Fenyes and Jeff Glatstein. Jennifer Less was renamed Sweetheart for a second term, and Henry Faber received the Harry Okeon Memorial Award. Russell Blumenthal won the Stanley Okeon Best Ad Sales Award. The show was the most profitable one so far, raising over $5,300.
Okeon’s 1986 rush party in August was a Las Vegas casino evening. From the hard work of AIT Dads Richard Fenyes and Russell Blumenthal, we received 16 new AITs.
In September 1986, Russell Blumenthal was elected Godol, and Hal Cohen was elected S’gan. At the 1986 Regional Convention, Okeon had one of its best showings ever. Okeon won five Program of the Year Awards; the AITs won Best Program, and the Chapter received the Alan Yuspeh Best Chapter in the Region Award along with the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award. Okeon’s scrapbook won first place again for the third straight year. Russell Blumenthal was elected Regional S’gan, and Stuart Usdan was elected Regional Moreh. Okeon’s own David Ostrow was named Cotton States Best Four Year Member.
In February, Banquet ‘87, planned by David Ostrow and Brad Kaplan, was held at the Peabody Hotel. Russell Blumenthal received the Best All-Around Member Award, and Claire Angel was elected Sweetheart at the end of the night.
In March 1987, Brad Kaplan was elected Godol, and Hal Cohen was re-elected S’gan. On August 2, Summertime ‘87 was held. The show was a remake of an old Summertime; the new show was entitled “Supermuench, Too!” and was chaired by Russell Blumenthal and David Lichtman. The show was a huge success bringing in about $5,000 for charity. David Lichtman won the Best Ad Sales Award, and Richard Fenyes won the Harry Okeon Memorial Award. After the show, Marcy Berlanstein was crowned as the new Sweetheart.
At International Convention, Okeon won four International Awards, which was more than any other chapter in the Order. Okeon won a first place award in Athletics, second place overall in ISF donations, first place Per-capita ISF Donation and the Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter.
Soon after Summertime, elections were held, and David Lichtman was elected Godol, and Marc Kesselman was elected S’gan. In September, Okeon held its 1987 Intake, planned by AlT Dads Marty Halpem and Eric Brown. The Intake had a western-casino theme and resulted in Okeon’s gaining 15 AITS. Late in November, Okeon was fortunate enough to gain another advisor, Judy Frisch.
At the 1987 Regional Convention held in Memphis, Okeon made another outstanding appearance, bringing home 16 awards, including three first place, two second place, and one third place in Programs of the Year; Eric Brown and Richard Fenyes won first place in AZA Debate; Marc Kesselman won first place in AZA Oratory, and Brad Kaplan and Eric Brown’s newspaper won first place, as did Claire Angel’s and Marcy Berlanstein’s incredible scrapbooks. The AlT class won Most Spirited for their outstanding performance at AlT/MIT Conclave. The chapter won the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials award and was also named “Most Spirited Chapter.” Also, Okeon was honored to have Daniel Biller elected Regional Gizbor and Eric Brown as Regional Mazkir.
In February 1988, Okeon held its Banquet ‘88 which was planned by Hal Cohen and Justin Miller. At Banquet, David Lichtman was named Best All-Around Member, and Tricia Miner was named Sweetheart. In March of 1988, elections were again held which resulted in Stuart Usdan being named Godol and Neal Loskovitz being named S’gan. On May 1, 1988, for the first time in record history, the Men of Lester S. Okeon AZA, going undefeated, won First Place in the JCC teen basketball league.
On August 7, 1988, yet another Summertime was held; this one was entitled “Okeon’s Summer Bible School” and was chaired by Daniel Biller and Adya Riss. David Lichtman won the Harry Okeon Memorial Award, while the Best Ad Sales was awarded to Stuart Usdan and Daniel Biller. Lauren Slovis was crowned as our new Sweetheart after the show.
In September 1988, Okeon held its intake with a “Jamaican/Hawaiian Getaway Weekend” theme. It was planned by Mohrem Justin Miller and Marty Newberger. As a result of the tropical evening, Okeon was fortunate enough to gain 10 new AITs. Elections were held later that month producing Eric Brown as Godol and Cliff Isenberg as S’gan.
At International Convention, Okeon received another Henry Monsky award. At the 1988 Regional Convention in Nashville, Okeon once again walked away with most of the awards. In programming, Okeon won three first place awards, two second place, and one third place award. In addition, Okeon’s intake won second place, and our AITs took first place for their AIT fold. Also, Tricia Miner’s and Lauren Slovis’ scrapbooks won second place, while her door signs won first place. Okeon came in first in the basketball tournament, second in football, and first place in the billiards tournament. Okeon’s masterpiece video unanimously took first place, and Adya Riss won first place in Photography. Okeon was also recognized for its 100% Retention Rate and received the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials award. David Lichtman was named as the Cotton States Best Four Year Member.
In February of 1989, Okeon held its 30th annual Banquet, which was chaired by Bernard Myers and Jacob Angel. Once again, David Lichtman was named Best All-Around Member as Erin Ostrow became the new Sweetheart. In March of 1989, Cliff Isenberg was installed as Godol, and Michael Serenco, along with Adya Riss, shared the duties of S’gan.
For the second year in a row, the Men of Lester S. Okeon AZA won first place in the teen basketball league on May 2, 1989.
Okeon held its annual Summertime show on August 6, 1989. It was chaired by David Lichtman and Michael Serenco and was entitled “Okeon on Broadway--The 25th Annual Sherman Awards.” It was, in fact, Okeon’s 25th show and was a huge success. The Harry Okeon Award was given to Stuart Usdan and Brad Kaplan. Jake and Justin Miller received the Best Ad Sales Award, and Ellen Friedman was named Sweetheart after the dance.
As September rolled around, Okeon prepared for another prosperous intake. The theme was “Okeon University” and was planned by Mohrem Jake Miller and Daniel Marcus. Okeon University enrolled 17 new AlTs. Elections were held later in the month, and Daniel Biller was elected Godol, and Michael Serenco was elected S’gan. The Henry Monsky award was again given to Okeon at International Convention in 1989. Okeon also received several awards at Regional Convention in Birmingham, including first place community service, third place cultural, and first place joint community service with Kriger BBG. Okeon also received Most Spirited Chapter again. Ellen Friedman’s scrapbook won first place and door signs won third. Okeon came in first in the Basketball tournament and the Video tournament. Okeon also won the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials award.
In February 1990, Okeon once again held its 31st Banquet chaired by Jake Miller and Eric Brown. Eric received the Best All-Around Member Award, and Laurie Lewis was declared the new Sweetheart. In March, Okeon selected a new exec board with Michael Serenco as Godol and Jason Kaplan as S’gan.
In the summer of 1990, Okeon held its 26th Annual Summertime entitled “Exodus: The Musical,” and it was chaired by Adya Riss and Jake Miller. The Harry Okeon Memorial Award was given to Cliff Isenberg, while Jason Kaplan won the Best Summertime Worker Award. Jake Miller was awarded the Stanley Okeon Most Ad Sales plaque. In late July, Michael Serenco was added to the Regional Board as the 1990 Mirketz.
The month of September arrived quickly, and Okeon again prepared for a most impressive intake. The theme was “Okeon: Casino & Luau Style.” After the partying had concluded, Okeon received 12 new AlTs. Elections were soon held with Jason Kaplan as Godol and Jake Miller as S’gan.
International Convention 1990 awarded Okeon another Henry Monsky Award. Regional Convention was held in Perdido Beach, Alabama, with Michael Serenco serving as Convention Coordinator. Okeon again received the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials and Most Spirited Chapter Awards. Okeon won three program of the year awards along with first place in newspaper. Jason Kaplan was elected Regional S’gan.
In February 1991, Okeon held its 32nd Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Peabody. Serving as chairmen were Michael Serenco and Peter Blair. Peter Blair received the Best First Year Member Award, and Michael Serenco received the Best All-Around Member Award. Lindsey Chase was named the new Sweetheart. In March, Alan Levy was elected Godol with Jeremy Padawer as S’gan. In May, Okeon members produced the award-winning fold “OKEONFEST.”
Okeon held its 27th Summertime with the show entitled “The Real Desert Storm.” Alan Pinstein and Jason Kaplan served as Summertime chairmen. The Best Summertime Worker Award was given to Jake Miller and Jeremy Padawer. Jake Miller also received the Stanley Okeon Most Ad Sales Award, and Amy Kun was selected as the new Sweetheart. Herman Goldberger announced his retirement as chapter advisor after 26 years of service.
In September 1991, Okeon held elections and named Jeremy Padawer as Godol and Alan Pinstein as S’gan. Under the direction of Morim Peter Blair and Ira Lipsey, the chapter had one of its most successful intakes in years --receiving 20 AlTs. Steve Ballin became Okeon’s newest advisor. Okeon also received a second place International Award for Social and another Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter award.
Regional Convention was held in Knoxville, TN, and Okeon stormed Convention with 29 members. Okeon received Most Spirited Chapter Award along with several Programs of the Year awards, the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award and first place in door signs, scrapbook, newspaper and volleyball. David Grossman was elected Regional S’gan, and Justin Kaplan was chosen as Regional Mazkir.
In February 1992, Okeon held its 33rd Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Peabody Hotel. Serving as Banquet chairmen for the evening were Josh Liszt and Eric Leib. Jason Kaplan was selected as the Best All-Around Member, and Eric Leib was named Best First Year Member. Rachel Molasky was named the new Sweetheart. In March, Alan Pinstein was elected Godol, and Eric Leib was elected S’gan.
The 28th Annual Summertime was held with the show entitled “Johnny’s Dream: Take 1204.” Jennifer Weissman was selected as the new Sweetheart. The Best Summertime Worker was given to Eric Leib, and the Harry Okeon Memorial Award was given to Jeremy Padawer. The Top Ad Sales Award was given to Corey Wishnia. Judy Frisch returned as Okeon’s advisor.
In late August 1992, Okeon held elections and named Eric Leib as Godol and Jeff Engelberg as S’gan. Intake ‘92 was held under the direction of Howie Knopf, Robby Levine, and Adam Kohn. Okeon received its largest AlT class to date -- 21 members.
Okeon received a first place International Program of the Year for OKEONFEST along with another Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award. Peter Blair was selected to serve as Regional Convention Coordinator.
Regional Convention was held in Memphis at the Marriott, and Okeon had 26 spirited members in attendance.
Okeon received two first place Program of the Year Awards, one second place, one third place, and one Honorable mention. Scrapbook and door signs took second place as did the Basketball team. Okeon once again received the Most Spirited Chapter and the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award AND the Chapter of the Year Award. Eric Leib was elected Regional Aleph Godol, and Robby Levine was elected Regional Moreh.
In February 1993, Okeon held its 34th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at Woodland Hills. The Banquet Chairmen for the evening were Jason Bloomfield and Alan Silver. Eric Leib was named the Best All-Around Member, and the Best First Year Member Award was shared by Jeff Kaminsky and Robby Levine. Erin Moss was elected to be the new Sweetheart. At the end of February, Jeff Kaminsky was elected Godol, and Barry Kaplan was elected S’gan.
With the JCC under construction, the 29th Annual Summertime was moved to a couple of different locations for rehearsals and the show. Under the chairmanship of Phillip Cook, Robby Levine and Michael Tauer, Summertime ’93, “Feel The Heat,” was held at Lausanne School. lllysa Lit was named as the new Sweetheart. The Best Summertime Worker Award was given to Brad Weissman; Top Ad Sales Award went to Matt Moss, and the Harry Okeon Memorial Award was given to Peter Blair.
In late August 1993, Okeon held its Fall officer elections and selected Robby Levine as Godol and Phillip Cook as S’gan. Intake ‘93 took place under the leadership of AlT Dads Jason Bloomfield and Len Gray, and Okeon received 18 new members.
Okeon was represented at International Convention by Eric Leib, Robby Levine and Jeff Kaminsky, and they brought back another Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award, a second place International Award for Best Chapter Newspaper, and second place International Cultural Award.
December 1993 brought Regional Convention in Mobile, AL, and Okeon sent one of its largest delegations ever -- 30 members. Okeon received two first place Program of the Year Awards for Community Service and Athletic, one second place for Social, the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award, second place scrapbook, door signs, and for the football team. Okeon also won AGAIN for Most Spirited Chapter!! Aaron Jaffe was chosen to serve as Regional Mazkir.
In February 1994, Okeon held the 35th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Peabody Hotel. The Banquet Chairmen were Justin Kaplan and Barry Kaplan. Robby Levine was chosen as the Best All-Around Member, and the Best First Year Member Award was shared by Len Gray and Aaron Jaffe. Laurie Nathan was elected to be the new Sweetheart. Elections were held at the end of February, and Kivi Cohn was elected Godol and Len Gray elected S’gan.
The 30th Annual Summertime was held in the newly refurbished MJCC under the chairmenship of Jason Bloomfield and Jeff Kaminsky. Stefanie Gerson was selected as the new Sweetheart. The Best Summertime Worker Award was given to Jeff Kay; Top Ad Sales was Jeff Kaminsky and Kivi Cohn, and the Harry Okeon Memorial Award was given to Eric Leib.
In late August 1994, Okeon held its elections for the Fall/Winter term. Len Gray was elected Godol, and Robby Levine was elected as S’gan. ‘94 Intake was held under the direction of the AIT Dads Todd Jason and Aaron Jaffe, and Okeon received “The Few, The Proud” five AITs.
Okeon also received another in a long list of awards at International Convention -- another Henry Monsky Best All Around Chapter Award.
In December of 1994, Okeon attended the Regional Convention held in Nashville, TN, and Okeon member Jeff Kaminsky served as one of the Regional Convention Coordinators. Okeon sent 25 members and various sizes of buckets to Convention. Okeon won First Place in AZA Basketball and Soccer. Okeon also received the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials award along with First Place Social and Religious, Second Place Athletic, Third Place Community Service, First Place scrapbook and second place door signs. Len Gray was elected Regional Aleph Godol, and Jeff Kay was elected Regional Gizbor.
In February 1995, Okeon held the 36th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Peabody Hotel. The Banquet Chairmen were Jon Spektor and Ben Case. Chosen as Best All-Around Member was Jeff Kaminsky, and Jeff Kay was selected as Best First Year Member. Anna Pollack was chosen as the new Sweetheart. Later that month, elections were held, and Jon Spektor was elected Godol, and Ben Case was elected S’gan. Summertime ‘96 – “Batmench” -- was held in late July 1995 at the MJCC with Len Gray and Jeff Cantor serving as the Summertime chairmen. Hillary Baer was selected as the new Sweetheart. The Best Summertime Worker Award was Rodney Weiss; Top Ad Sales Award was Ben Case, and the Harry Okeon Memorial Award was presented to Jason Bloomfield and Len Gray.
In late August 1995, Okeon held elections for the fall term. Ben Case was elected Godol, and Jeff Cantor was elected S’gan. The 1995 Intake was planned by AIT Dads Jeff Kay and Justin Turner, and Okeon received the largest AlT class ever -- 27 members.
In December 1995, Okeon sent 28 members to Regional Convention in Birmingham. Okeon received several Programming Awards, First Place Football, and First Place door signs.
In February 1996, Okeon had the 37th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet at the Adam’s Mark Hotel, with Ben Case and Jeff Kay serving as Banquet Chairmen. Selected as Best All-Around Member was Len Gray, and Best First Year Member was Jeffrey Klitzner. Brooke Bennett was chosen to be the new Sweetheart. Also that evening were installations of the new Executive Board with Jeff Kay as Godol and Chris Bloomfield as S’gan.
In August 1996, Okeon held the 32nd Annual Summertime – “Billy Mendelson” -- at the MJCC with Jeff Cantor and Jay Lipsey serving as chairmen. Lindsey Kaplan was named as the new Sweetheart. Best Summertime Worker was awarded to Hal Towbin and Brandon Frisch; Top Ad Sales Award was Jay Lipsey, and Len Gray received the Harry Okeon Memorial Award. Okeon received another Henry Monsky Best Chapter award at International Convention.
In late August 1996, Okeon elections were held, and Craig Walzer was elected as Godol and Neal Weinrich was elected as S’gan. Intake ‘96 was planned by AIT Dads Ryan Edwards and Brad Schoenberger, and Okeon received 22 new members.
In December 1996, Okeon sent 18 members to Regional Convention in Memphis. Okeon won first place in Community Service, second place in Religious, and second place in AZA newspaper. Chris Bloomfield was chosen as Regional Aleph Mazkir.
In February 1997, Okeon held its 38th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet, chaired by Jeff Kay and Chris Bloomfield. At Banquet, the Best First Year Member was awarded to Craig Walzer, and the Best All-Around Member was received by Bryan Padawer. Chris Bloomfield was installed as Aleph Godol, and Neal Weinrich as S’gan. Eric Halpern was announced as the newest advisor, and Meggan Wurzburg was announced as the newest Sweetheart.
In late March of 1997, Okeon lost its chapter mother, Mrs. Frieda Okeon. In the same weekend, on a lighter note, Craig Walzer was announced as Regional Aleph Mirketz at Spring Kallah.
In June of 1997, Summertime ‘97, “Romeo and Juliet,” was performed. Deena Knopf was selected as the next Sweetheart, and Jason Kaplan was announced as a new Okeon advisor. The Best Summertime Worker Award went to Neal Weinrich and Craig Walzer, and Top Ad Sales went to Craig Walzer. The newly renamed Harry and Frieda Okeon Memorial Award was presented to Jeff Cantor.
In July of 1997, Okeon sent four members to CLTC: Jay Kaufman, Marc Shmerling, Neal Weinrich, and Brandon Frisch. In August of 1997, at International Convention, Craig Walzer was elected as the 9th Grand Aleph Shaliach, and the chapter was given the Monsky Award.
At election in September 1997, Neal Weinrich was elected as Godol, and Jay Kaufman S’gan. In the same month, Okeon received nine AITs, after a successful intake planned by AlT Dads Hal Towbin and Craig Walzer.
At the 1997 Convention in Knoxville, Okeon was represented by twenty-seven Alephs. Okeon received five out of fifteen programming awards, a soccer title, runner-up in basketball, and the Most Improved Chapter. Along with a great chapter showing, Okeon had three members elected to the regional board: Chris Bloomfield as Godol, Craig Walzer as Shaliach, and Jay Kaufman as Mazkir. Chris Bloomfield, Craig Walzer, Brandon Frisch, and Neal Weinrich were presented with the Bronze Shield of David, and Neal Weinrich was chosen as Regional Aleph of the Year.
In January 1998, Okeon held its 39th Sweetheart and Awards Banquet, chaired by Brandon Frisch and David Kaplan. Jay Kaufman was named the Best First Year Member, and Jake Silverstein was chosen as the Best All-Around Member. Jill Kaminsky was announced as the new Okeon Sweetheart.
In February 1998, Okeon held elections, and Brandon Frisch was elected Godol, and Jay Kaufman S’gan. In June 1998, Okeon performed “The Wizard of Okeon” at its annual Summertime Show. Best Summertime Worker went to Philip Greenberg; Top Ad Sales went to Jonathan May, and the Harry and Frieda Okeon Memorial Award went to Neal Weinrich. Rebecca Goldin was named the new Sweetheart.
In August 1998, Okeon received the Monsky Award, and Craig Walzer was re-elected to serve as Grand Aleph Shaliach. In September 1998, Okeon held its intake, planned by Marc Shmerling, David Kaplan, and Neal Weinrich. On Chapter Choice night, Okeon received 12 new AlTs. That same month, Okeon again held elections with Jay Kaufman selected as Godol and Jonathan May as S’gan.
At 1998 Convention in Nashville, Okeon was represented by thirty-one Alephs. Okeon won five programming awards, the Most Fraternal Chapter, and the coveted Chapter of the Year trophy. Jay Kaufman was elected Regional Aleph Moreh and also was presented a Bronze Shield of David. Craig Walzer, Neal Weinrich, Marc Shmerling, and Brandon Frisch received Silver Shields of David, and Craig Walzer was chosen as the Regional Best Four Year Member.
In January 1999, Okeon held its 40th Annual Sweetheart and Awards Banquet and Reunion, chaired by Brandon Frisch, Chris Bloomfield, Craig Walzer, and Neal Weinrich. Held at the Peabody Hotel, nearly 250 guests attended. Jon May was named the Best First Year Member. A new award was introduced, “Andrew T. Forman -- Best Four Year Member” was presented to Neal Weinrich, and Neal was also chosen as the Best All-Around Member. Lauren Weinrich was announced as the new Okeon Sweetheart.
In February 1999, Okeon held elections, and David Kaplan was elected Godol and Akiva Felt S’gan. In June 1999, Okeon performed “The Three Okeoneers” for its Annual Summertime Show. Best Summertime Worker went to Michael Katzman; Top Ad Sales went to Henry Rothenberg, and the Harry and Frieda Okeon Memorial Award went to Chris Bloomfield and Marc Shmerling. The Newman Distinguished Service Award went to Brandon Frisch and Craig Walzer. Sara Felt was named the new Sweetheart.
In August 1998, Okeon received the Monsky Award at International Convention, and Okeon received First Place Educational Fold. In September 1998, Okeon held its Intake, planned by Jonathan May, Steven Katz, and Philip Shmerling. On Chapter Choice night, Okeon received 9 new AlTs. That same month, Okeon again held elections with Jonathan May selected as Godol and Adam Lazarov as S’gan.
At 1998 Convention in Birmingham, Okeon was represented by twenty-three Alephs. Okeon won six programming awards and the Most Spirited Chapter. Jonathan May was elected Regional Aleph Moreh, and AJ Walzer was elected Regional Aleph Mazkir/Gizbor. Philip Shmerling, Jonathan May, and Henry Rothenberg were presented a Bronze Shield of David. Jay Kaufman received the Silver Shield of David. This past year had been one of Okeon’s finest. At Banquet, Bethany Goldin was named Sweetheart; Brian Wender won the award for Best Four Year Member; Jay Kaufman was named Member of the Year, and Adam Lazarov and Jon Eisenberg shared the award for Best First Year Member.
Shortly after Banquet, Okeon elected its Spring Term Exec. Board, headed up with Jonathan Rudner as Godol and AJ Walzer as S’gan. This term’s most successful program was a Father-Son charity football game headed up by Brian Katz. Both sides had so much fun that it was decided that this should be an annual event. As the chapter began preparations for Summertime, Henry Rothenberg, Adam Lazarov, and Michael Katzman were named chairmen for the show. The show entitled “Peter Pan: An Israeli Adventure” was a huge success, and after the performance Kendall Arney was named Sweetheart. Summertime award winners were: Jonathan May, Frieda & Harry Okeon Memorial Award; Brian Katz, Newman Distinguished Service Award; Henry Rothenberg, Top Ad Sales, and Michael Katzman, Best Summertime Worker.
After a summer full of members participating in Summer programs, Okeon came back together for Fall Term elections. AJ Walzer won Godol and was given the incredible supporting cast of Brian Katz as S’gan. After the new board settled in, Okeon prepared for a very successful intake planned by Daniel Conroy and Danny Sternberg. The chapter reaped the benefits of its hard work with 25 amazing AlTs. During this term, Okeon sent large delegations to the Regional Leadership Training Conference and MIT/AlT Conclave, planned by Okeon members, Adam Lazarov and Henry Rothenberg, respectively.
Not too long after this, the chapter began preparations for Convention, to be held in Memphis. Once again Okeon was showered with awards in the areas of programming and creativity contests. It was most proud, however, of the award for the region’s Best Brotherhood and of its Shield of David winners: Jon May and Henry Rothenberg -- Silver, and Adam Lazarov, AJ Walzer and Brian Katz -- Bronze. Okeon was also very proud of its new regional officers: Adam Lazarov winning Regional S’gan and Michael Katzman winning Regional Mazkir/Gizbor.
After settling down, the members came back together to be inspired to keep the good name of Okeon by listening to Lester S. Okeon’s brother Milton Okeon’s inspirational talk.
After the summer filled with numerous summer program attendees, Okeon got back together for elections and intake. Danny Sternberg was elected Godol, and Brad Eiseman was reelected S’gan. Intake was a success as Okeon gained 19 AITs. Okeon then sent the largest delegation to Convention 2001 in Knoxville. After winning numerous awards, including the high and honorable Chapter of the Year, and having Aleph Brad Eiseman win Regional S’gan, Okeon settled into the new year with a wonderful Banquet planned by Andy Shiffman and Kevin Padawer. After Becca Baum was elected Sweetheart, Okeon elected Daniel Susser as Godol and Stephen Kriger as S’gan. Okeon immediately began working on a new Summertime, this year titled “Willy Wonkawitz and the Gelt Factory.” After Summertime and the annual charity softball game, Okeon elected Jessica Baum as our new Sweetheart.
Again, Okeon sent numerous Alephs to summer programs; Okeon’s own Jason Goldstein planned Regional Kallah in August. After Kallah and an awesome intake in which Okeon gained 21 new AITs, Okeon elected a new executive board led by Godol Barry Dan and S’gan Jason Goldstein. Okeon sent a large delegation to Convention 2002: “How do you measure a year?” Okeon won numerous awards, including the coveted Spirit Drum with the Most Spirited Award as Aleph Stephen Kriger was elected Regional Shaliach. Alephs Kevin Padawer and Daniel Conroy won the Bronze Shield of David, and Brad Eiseman won the Silver Shield of David.
After Banquet and electing Lauren Arnold as our new Sweetheart, we voted on a new Summertime Term Exec Board. With Jason Goldstein as Godol, Blake Wagerman as S’gan, Morim Barry Dan and Andrew Edelson, Mazkir David R. Mann, Gizbor Zach Kisber, and Shlichim Stephen Kriger and Tuvi Felt, it was soon to be a promising term for Okeon. During this term, Okeon presented “Robin Hood: Men with Chutzpah,” and with Martha Wagerman as director and Kevin Padawer, Jonathan Wolf, and Jonathan Wilons as Summertime Chairmen, it turned out to be a great success.
After the show, we triumphantly elected a new Sweetheart, Katie Kornberg. Then it was on to Convention. We selected a new board to be headed by Stephen Kriger as Godol and Zak Kisber as S’gan. Assisting them were newcomers Jonathan Clemons as Mazkir and Sam Olswanger as Gizbor. Along with the rest of the board, Kevin Padawer and Jonathan Wolf were elected as Shlichim. Our already established Morim acquired 20 new AlTs after intake. One thing that kept Okeon busy was the Annual ASBEE BBQ Contest, in which Okeon won an award for Most Creative Name. During Convention 2003, Okeon walked away with nine awards, four Bronze Shields of David and the only Silver Shield of David given in the Cotton States to Jason Goldstein.
After a wonderful Banquet 2004 planned by Ben Huebscher, Adam Saslawsky, and Blake Wagerman, Okeon AZA got back to work. Sarah Lipsey was elected as Sweetheart. Sam Olswanger was elected Godol of the new board, along with Parker Trotz as S’gan, Jacob Baer as Mazkir, Zach Hanover as Gizbor, and Jeff Dreifus and Scott Eiseman as Morim. Because of the new Memphis BBYO intake system, Okeon planned three great intakes and ten AITs joined Okeon. Summertime 2004, “PinOkeonO,” chaired by Zak Kisber, Brian Dragutsky, and David Mann, was a huge success. Also, the men of Okeon granted a wish to a young girl who was about to die. Okeon, with the help of the Marty Olswanger Memorial Foundation, gave this girl a shopping spree in Memphis to Toys-R-Us and Limited Too. Justin Goldring was elected as Sweetheart after the show. Okeon won awards at the Annual ASBEE BBQ Contest for the sauce and brisket. The new fall board, consisting of Zak Kisber as Godol, Jacob Baer as S’gan, Mark Egerman as Gizbor, and Nathan Silverman as Mazkir, and the existing Morim, got off to a great start. CSR Convention in Memphis was planned by Okeon’s Scott Eiseman. Okeon won many awards and captured the basketball tournament championship, defeating Peres in the finals.
After Banquet planned by Parker Trotz and Zachary Hanover, Mimi Arnold was elected as the newest Sweetheart of Okeon AZA. Following that, the elections of the 2005 Summertime Exec Board were held, and Daniel Lansky was elected as Godol, Scott Eiseman as S’gan, Sam Olswanger and Mark Egerman as Morim, Simon Chanin as Mazkir, and Corey Steinberg as Gizbor. The term went great and for Summertime that year Bunny Goldstein directed Okeon in a very successful take on Aladdin where Stacey Goldstein was announced as the new Sweetheart. Following Summertime was intake. The Morim, Sam and Mark, planned one of the greatest intakes and brought in 23 new AITs. At this time, Okeon was also very happy to welcome a new advisor, Raymond Evans, but also saddened at the departure of 7 year advisor Eric Halpern. Also, Zachary Hanover was selected to plan this year’s Fall Kallah, and he did a great job and everyone enjoyed the weekend. Two weeks later came the election of the new board. Jacob Baer was elected Godol, Zachary Hanover as S’gan, Sam Olswanger and Mark Egerman remained as Morim, Jeffery Paller was elected Mazkir, and Simon Chanin won the role of Gizbor. A third Okeon member to plan a regional program was Sam Olswanger. He planned the largest New Member Weekend ever in Cotton States. At Convention, Okeon swept in awards. Sam Olswanger was the only non exec member to bring home a Silver Shield and also won Best Four Year Member; Jacob Baer was awarded Member of the Year; Jeff Dreifus won the position of Regional Aleph Godol, and Okeon as a whole won Chapter of the Year.
Beginning 2006 with a wonderful Banquet planned by chairmen Scott Raileanu and Daniel Simkin at which Okeon named Kelsey Alabaster as Sweetheart, Okeon went on in February to elect Jacob Baer for a second term as Godol, Sam Goldstein as S’gan, David Stamm as Mazkir, Aaron Poulin as Gizbor, Jake Franklin and Corey Steinberg as Morim, and Jordan Saslawsky and Mason Gudelsky as Shlichim. Then, with the help of Martha Wagerman, who returned to direct one final Summertime show, Okeon put on “The Okeon King,” a unique take on “The Lion King.” The show was highly successful, and Okeon raised thousands of dollars for charity. Also, Okeon named Kimberly Evans as Sweetheart. During the summer, Okeon sent numerous members to multiple International Programs, including many to CLTC, International Kallah, and BBYO’s Passport-2-Israel. In August, Okeon entered into the Annual ASBEE BBQ contest and won 3rd Place for Brisket and 2nd Place for Ribs. Beginning in September, Okeon elected Zach Hanover as Godol, Jared Bender as S’gan, Aaron Poulin as Mazkir, Jordan Saslawsky as Gizbor, Ted Cohen and Zachary Roberts as Shlichim, and Jacob Baer to fill an open Moreh position to finish the term with Moreh Jake Franklin. The Morim planned an incredible Intake program, during which Okeon recruited 16 new AlTs. The AITs named Cara Greenstein and Carey Segal as Little Sisters. These AITs went on to MIT/AIT 2006, co-coordinated by Okeon’s very own Sweetheart Kimberly Evans, armed with bucket and spoon in hand, and gave the entire region a pre-convention preview of Okeon’s might. Okeon beat Peres in this year’s Turkey Bowl, and the money raised was donated to I$F-PEF at Convention. At Convention 2006 in Nashville, Okeon certainly “Got It Done.” After beating Peres again in the final game, Okeon reclaimed the Convention basketball trophy. Okeon won numerous Program Awards, and through the efforts of our Sweetheart, “Kimbo,” Okeon won 1st Place for both scrapbook and door signs. In addition, Alephs Zach Hanover, Jacob Baer, and Jeff Dreifus received the prestigious Silver Shield of David, a feat even more so important because neither Zach Hanover nor Jacob Baer ever served as a Regional Board Exec. As a whole, Okeon reclaimed Most Spirited Chapter. At Banquet 2007, Okeon named Brittany Baum as their next Sweetheart.
As 2007 roared in so did the newly elected executive board with Jeff Dreifus as Aleph Godol, Aaron Poulin as Aleph S’gan, Aleph Morim Jordan Saslawsky and Lee Olswanger, Aleph Mazkir Evan Kline, Aleph Gizbor Daniel Fortas and Aleph Shlichim Ben Orgel and Logan Scheidt. Even though our board was very young, they had a lot of potential. As the year went by, our Gizbor Daniel Fortas planned a very fun and exciting three-on-three basketball tournament at Lausanne. Though programming was hard to come by due to many factors, our brotherhood was outstanding. It is customary to have our annual Summertime program, but unfortunately due to circumstances out of our control, we were not able to have it. As one of the great Senior classes was about to exit, we held Senior Life which brought Okeon close together one last time before summer came. In May 2007, Okeon elected its new executive board with Aaron Poulin as Aleph Godol, Corey Steinberg as Aleph S’gan, Jordan Saslawsky as Aleph Moreh, Ben Orgel as Aleph Mazkir, Jake Franklin as Aleph Gizbor, and Ted Cohen and Logan Scheidt as Aleph Shlichim. Okeon sent 7 members to international summer programs, including CLTC, Kallah, and Passport to Israel. In August 2007, Okeon named Becca Handler as Sweetheart, and Okeon obtained 13 AlTs. Okeon AlTs named Hayley Gruwer and Leah Mendelson as Little Sisters. At Regional Convention in Birmingham, Alabama, Aleph Jordan Saslawsky was elected as Regional Aleph Moreh and Aleph Evan Kline was elected Regional Aleph Shaliach. Also, Aleph Aaron Poulin and Aleph Jordan Saslawsky received the Bronze Shield of David. Sweetheart Becca Handler won 1st place for scrapbook and 2nd place for door signs.
In January 2008, Okeon had its elections with Zac Graber elected as Aleph Godol, Alephs Aaron Poulin and Aleph Evan Kline as Co-Aleph S’gan, Daniel Fortas and Mason Greenberg as Aleph Morim, Noah Hanover as Aleph Mazkir, Nathan Evans as Aleph Gizbor, and Eric Seligstein and Ethan Trotz as Aleph Shlichim. At Okeon Banquet, Noah Hanover won the Best AlT Award, Nathan Evans Best First Year Member Award, Corey Steinberg Best Four Year Member Award, Ted Cohen Most Athletic Award, Jared Bender Most Fraternal Member Award, Jordan Saslawsky Most Helpful to the AIT Class, Evan Kline Most Helpful to the Godol and Most Likely to Succeed Awards, Matthew Agee Most Improved Member Award, Eric Seligstein Most Spirited Award. The evening was topped off by the election of Lizzy Belz as our Sweetheart. During the early spring, we welcomed Billy Seligstein as one of our advisors, and Okeon spearheaded one of the largest fundraisers in our chapter’s history in honor of one of our members who was being treated for cancer. After a year’s absence, Okeon had Summertime “Billy Madestein,” where Nathan Evans was given the honor of Top Ad Sales, Director’s Award, and Most Helpful to the Chairmen Award; Eric Seligstein was given the Director’s Award and Jake Franklin Most Helpful to the Advisors’ Award. During the summer, Okeon sent 9 people to international programs, including CLTC, Kallah, ILTC, Passport to Israel, and International Convention. After the summer, Okeon obtained 14 new AITs and elected a new executive board of Jordan Saslawsky as Aleph Godol, Evan Kline as Aleph S’gan, Ben Orgel and Mason Greenberg as Aleph Morim, Nathan Evans as Aleph Mazkir, Noah Hanover as Aleph Gizbor, and Aaron Poulin and Ethan Trotz as Aleph Shlichim. Okeon also elected Emily Trotz as Sweetheart and Little Sisters Melanie Baum and Rachel Pelts. In November 2008, Okeon retained the title of Turkey Bowl Champions. At Regional Convention 2008 in Memphis, TN, Okeon took home 4 out of 5 first place Program of the Year awards, the Most Improved Chapter Award, and the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award. Sweetheart Emily Trotz won 1st place for scrapbook and 2nd place for door signs. Ethan Trotz won the Cotton States AZA Member of the Year Award, and Aaron Poulin received the Shield Of David Award and the Cotton States Best Four Year Member Award. Evan Kline was elected as Regional S’gan, and Ethan Trotz was elected as Regional Shaliach.
At Banquet 2009, our 50th Anniversary Banquet, Carey Segal was named Sweetheart. Ethan Trotz was named the Best First Year Member; Aaron Poulin was named Best Four Year Member, and Evan Kline was named Best All-Around Member. Our Summertime Term Board was installed at Banquet with Ethan Trotz as Godol, Jake Greenstein as S’gan, Noah Hanover and Jordan Levi as Morim, Jeremy Reisman as Mazkir, Eli Steinberg as Gizbor, and Mason Greenberg and David Lipson as Shlichim. At International Convention in February 2009, our own Evan Kline was elected to the position of International S’gan, and our former Sweetheart, Emily Trotz, was elected to the position of International N’siah. Okeon won two International programming awards, and Ethan Trotz and Zac Graber attended International Convention along with Evan Kline. Summertime 2009 had a “Wizard of Oz” theme and was a fantastic success. After the show, Cara Greenstein was named the new Sweetheart. Ethan Trotz was named Most Helpful to the Sweetheart; Jordan Saslawsky and Aaron Poulin were honored as Best Summertime Workers, and the Top Ad Sales Award went to Eli Steinberg. After that, many Okeon members attended BBYO Summer Programs, including CLTC and International Kallah. Intake 2009, planned by Morim Noah Hanover and Jordan Levi, was a big success, bringing in 13 fantastic AITs that have been a strong freshmen class lead by AIT Godol Matthew Filderman. The AITs named Mimi Scheidt and Lauren Steiner as Little Sisters. The Banquet Term Executive Board was elected, with Jeremy Reisman as Godol, Jake Greenstein as the re-elected S’gan, Bishop Bledsoe as Mazkir, Nathan Franklin and Aaron Wolf as Gizborim, and Evan Kline and Daniel Back as Shlichim. Almost all of the AITs attended Regional New Member Weekend. Continuing with a fun annual tradition, Okeon had a booth at the Annual ASBEE BBQ Contest, with the cooking expertly assisted by former Okeon Godol Jake Lipsey. Okeon continued another annual tradition by participating as a chapter in the Temple Israel Mitzvah Day and began a new tradition of collecting holiday gifts for MIFA. Okeon retained its title as Turkey Bowl Champs. After painting our Okeon buckets, 18 Okeon members headed to Regional Convention in Knoxville. Okeon showed our dominance at Regional Convention, where we won five programming awards, the Ronnie Weiss Maximum Credentials Award, the AZA Basketball Championship, and the Most Spirited Chapter Award. Cara Greenstein’s fabulous scrapbook and door signs won First Place for Okeon. Also at Convention, Evan Kline was awarded a Silver Shield of David, and Ethan Trotz and Noah Hanover were awarded the Bronze Shield of David. Okeon welcomed five new advisors: Mr. Shep Fargotstein, Mr. Michael Katzman, Mr. Aaron Markowitz, Mr. Kevin Padawer, and Mr. Dave Woloshin.
At Banquet 2010, Hayley Gruwer was named Sweetheart. Jake Greenstein was named Best First Year Member; Evan Kline was named Best Four Year Member; Matthew Filderman was named Best AIT, and Jeremy Reisman was named Best All-Around Member. Our Summertime Term Board was installed at Banquet with Ethan Trotz as Godol, Jeremy Reisman as S’gan, Jake Greenstein and Jacob Woloshin as Morim, Matthew Filderman as Mazkir, Mason Greenberg as Gizbor, Andrew Ellen and Ethan Felsenthal as Shlichim, and Jeremy Reisman as Aleph Kohane Godol.
Four Okeon members attended International Convention (IC), including Evan Kline, Eli Steinberg, Ethan Trotz, and Jeremy Reisman. As International S’gan, Okeon’s own Evan Kline planned IC. At IC, Okeon won a Henry Monsky award. Jeremy Reisman was awarded with a Bronze Shield of David, Anita Perlman Community Service Award, the 85th Anniversary Award, and the Tree of Life Award.
We had an incredibly successful Summertime show with the theme of Finding Nemo. We raised thousands of dollars for charity and produced a lot of laughter while doing so. At Summertime, Summertime Girl Sarah Braslow was named Sweetheart of Okeon.
Okeon had a great BBYO summer as we sent approximately ten members to summer programs, including CLTC, ILTC, International Kallah, and Passport to Israel. After the summer, we came back strong recruiting a total of 18 awesome freshmen for our chapter. The AITs named Hannah Filderman and Sarah Siskin as Little Sisters. Under the leadership of Morim Jake Greenstein and Jacob Woloshin, we have been educating these freshmen, and we know that they will be great Okeon members when they are inducted in January. The Convention Term Board was installed with Matthew Filderman as Godol, Jeremy Reisman re-elected as S’gan, Jake Greenstein and Jacob Woloshin continuing as Morim, Jacob Buring as Mazkir, Eli Steinberg as Gizbor, Jeremy Braslow and Andrew Ellen as Shlichim, and Ethan Trotz as Aleph Kohane Godol. Okeon has had several outstanding folds this fall. As part of Temple Israel’s Mitzvah Day, Okeon helped to decorate benches at a Memphis City School called Wells Station. In addition, Okeon continued its tradition of having a booth at the Annual ASBEE BBQ Contest. Okeon member Jeremy Reisman was a co-coordinator of Regional Kallah. In November 2010, Okeon retained the title of Turkey Bowl Champions. At Winter Convention, Okeon played very well in the Basketball Tournament as well as winning 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place awards in various award categories and Best Brotherhood Award. Jeremy Reisman ran for Regional S’gan and Won.
Okeon is happy to welcome new advisors Mr. Justin Bender and Mr. Andy Forman, who join Mr. Kevin Padawer in overseeing the chapter. Mr. Forman previously served as an Okeon advisor for 18 years. Banquet was phenomenal. 18 AITs were inducted as Alephs. Gabriel Kisber and Benji Ballin was AIT of the Year. Ethan Felsenthal won most Althletic Member, and Ethan Trotz won Best Four Year Member. Matthew Filderman won Best First Year Member. Baylee Less became our new sweetheart!
January elections arrived and our new board was announced: Jacob Buring was installed as Godol. Jeremy Braslow took home S’gan. Freshman Gabriel Kisber became Mazkir and Freshman Jared Shermer Became Gizbor. Matthew Filderman and Eli Steinberg were elected as the new Morim. Nathan Franklin was the Shaliach. 2011 was a tough year for Okeon. Having an unexperienced board, and a lacking senior class Summertime 2011 was postponed. A meeting with the whole chapter ensued, and a new motion was passed to have Summertime in the Wintertime in the future, and Baylee continued to be our sweetheart. Over the Summer, Okeon sent 2 freshman to CLTC: Gabriel Kisber and Jeremy Boshwit.
The following fall, Okeon managed to recruit 9 new AITs: Connor Heaslet, Evan Hunter, Jacob Knight, Danny Levin, Jacob Levy, Mitch Moskowitz, Zohar Rubentstein, and Andrew Yanishevski. The new fall board was installed at intake: Jacob Harris was the new Godol. Gabriel Kisber became the new S’gan. Benji Ballin was the new Mazkir. Jeremy Boshwit became the new Gizbor. Matthew Filderman and Eli Steinberg remained the Morim. Zach Sadetsky and Aaron Canales became the new Shlichim.
Larry Wilons and Aaron Joyal replaced Justin Bender and Kevin Padawer as advisors.
Since a motion had been passed in May, Summertime was now in the Wintertime. It was held in January of 2012. We raised $6,000 as we performed Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. Kevin Saslawsky switched from Peres to Okeon at this time. Okeon elected Samantha Basar as the new sweetheart.
The new board for the spring of 2012 was elected. Matthew Filderman was elected for his second term as Godol. Gabriel Kisber was elected as S’gan for the second consecutive term. Connor Heaslet was elected as the new Mazkir. Jacob Harris and Benji Ballin were elected as the new Morim. Jacob Buring became the new Gizbor. Sam Charney became the new Shaliach.
We had many great programs throughout the term and ended the term with an outstanding banquet. We welcomed many new advisors: Curt Heaslet, Steve Ballin, Josh Goldin. Aaron Joyal and Larry departed from Okeon. Seven Seniors gave their Life to Okeon: Eli Steinberg, Jake Greenstein, Jeremy Reisman, Jacob Woloshin, Nathan Franklin, Aaron and Sam Skahill.
The next term opened up with elections: Gabriel Kisber won Godol. Sam Charney became S’gan. Connor Heaslet became Gizbor. Mitch Moskowitz won Mazkir. Kevin Saslawsky and Alex Weiderspan became the new Shlichim while Benji Ballin and Jacob Harris remained Morim. The Morim did a phenomenal job at 2012 intake, racking in 17 new AIT’s: Isaac Lurie, Andrew Rogers, Yanai Almalem, Ari Szoychen, Alex Hunter, Josh Abraham, Parker Alperin, Joshua Bender, Josh Clein, Joe Besser, Ben Cohen, Harrison Leitner, Matthew Rubin, Ethan Schaeffer, Alex Wells, and Josh Woodman.
Matthew Filderman coordinated MIT/AIT as we sent many freshman to it.
Okeon did phenomenal at convention. We sent nearly 30 members to convention. We won most improved chapter, and first place in scrapbook and doorsigns. Gabriel Kisber won AZA Member of the Year and Matthew Filderman won Best Four Year Member. Gabriel Kisber also won the Bronze Sheild of David while Matthew Filderman won the Silver Sheild of David.
Summertime was a huge success. We performed a musical rendition of Anchorman, while racking in $10,000. It was one of our most successful Summertimes in Okeon History. Sarah Siskin was named our new Sweetheart.
Okeon made a name for themselves internationally, the next term as we sent 3 members to International Convention: Gabriel Kisber, Matthew Filderman, and Jacob Buring. Gabriel Kisber was honored at IC by winning the Seven Cardinal Principles Award. 5 Freshman and 1 Sophmore plan to attend CLTC this coming summer.
In the fall of 2013, Okeon gained 9 new AITs: Sonny Smith, Noah Chensasky, Jacob Rotter, Aaron Solomon, Samuel Lace, Fernand Qyvjt, and
Gabriel Kisber Coordinated MIT/AIT and we sent 7 AIT's to it.