April 2022FEATURE

Jewish Family Service to “Play It Forward Together” at 2022 Heart & Soul Gala


Jewish Family Service’s annual Heart & Soul Gala returns to the Hyatt Regency La Jolla at Aventine on Saturday, April 30. This benefit gala highlights JFS’s efforts to provide resources and support to San Diegans of all ages, faiths, and backgrounds, and will also celebrate the contributions of the 2022 Mitzvah Honorees: Marcia Hazan, and Danielle and Brian Miller.

Marcia Hazan served on the JFS Board of Directors for 18 years, generously investing her time into addressing the urgent needs of her fellow San Diegans. She was instrumental in expanding JFS programs for Jewish single parents and low-income older adults. She worked to support and address behavioral health awareness, envisioned new possibilities as part of the Strategic Planning Committee, and has recently joined the Center for Jewish Care task force. A strong proponent of social justice, Hazan played an important role in shaping many new JFS initiatives that have created lasting change in the San Diego community.

As owners of award-winning toy store Geppetto’s, Danielle and Brian Miller’s passion for helping children thrive has strengthened the community and provided vulnerable families with the tools, resources, and support they need to transform their lives through several JFS programs. From supporting organizations that benefit childhood development to fundraising for local schools, the Millers are dedicated to creating a San Diego where everyone has the opportunity to thrive. The Millers’ commitment to empowering families and kids remains true to JFS’s core value of Kehillah (community).

“Over the past few years, San Diego’s nonprofits have been sorely tested as we continue to respond and adapt to the ever-shifting nature of COVID-19,” said JFS CEO Michael Hopkins. “Through it all, JFS has remained collaborative and nimble, providing critical assistance to those in crisis – whether they require basic needs like food to feed their families, starting new lives in the U.S., or looking for a safe place to sleep. We could not do this work without generous support from community members like Marcia Hazan and Brian and Danielle Miller.”

Partnering with Honorary Chairs Evelyn and Ernest Rady, Gala Chairs Marie Raftery and Dr. Robert Rubenstein, Scott Schindler, and Auction Chair Jeremy Ross will host an evening of dinner, dancing, and a silent auction to encourage awareness and philanthropy throughout the year.

Proceeds from the event benefit JFS’s ongoing efforts to help people in crisis move forward, while developing innovative strategies to break cycles of poverty and strengthen the San Diego community.

For health and safety reasons, this year’s event will have limited in-person capacity. To join the waitlist for in-person tickets or to register to attend virtually, visit jfssd.org/gala.



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