TBJ to honor villagers

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SHORT HILLS, NJ — South Orange residents Charles Oransky and Frederic Smith will be honored by Temple B’nai Jeshurun at a gala celebration commemorating the synagogue’s 170th anniversary on Thursday, May 10. The evening’s theme, “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow,” pays tribute to the temple’s past presidents, the Interfaith Hospitality Network’s founding organizers and the synagogue’s Rabbi Barry H. Greene Early Childhood Center Parents’ Association founding chairpersons. Oransky and Smith are both past presidents of the congregation.

An attorney and partner at Hellring Lindeman Goldstein & Siegel in Newark, Oransky served two non-sequential terms as B’nai Jeshurun’s president, most recently from 2014 to 2017 and also has been legal counsel to the temple’s board. He and his wife, Margaret Dee Hellring, have lived in South Orange for many years and have four children and six grandchildren.

Having presided over the synagogue board from 1994 to 1996, Smith is currently chairman of the Cemetery Committee. A Boston native, he earned an undergraduate degree from the University of Massachusetts and an MBA from Columbia, and served in the U.S. Army. He worked in the chemical industry, both in the Midwest and in the New York area before coming to New Jersey. He and his wife, Deborah Gilbert Smith, were longtime Maplewood residents before moving to South Orange several years ago.

Founded in Newark, in 1848, Temple B’nai Jeshurun is the second oldest Reform Jewish congregation in New Jersey. For a number of years, the synagogue held its Friday night services and conducted its religious school in a building it owned on South Center Street and Montrose Avenue in South Orange. The congregation relocated to Short Hills in 1968. The upcoming gala in May will celebrate two historic occasions: the temple’s 50th year in its Short Hills location and the 170th anniversary of its founding.

For more information and to purchase tickets to the 170th celebration, visit www.tbj170.com.