Community Celebration of Gilad Shalit’s Freedom

What an amazing day! This morning, over 350 people representing our diverse Los Angeles Jewish community were at the Beverly Hilton to share in celebrating Gilad Shalit’s return home after more than five years in captivity. Our Federation partnered with the Israeli Consulate and the Israeli Leadership Council to host this opportunity for our entire community to come together to commemorate this historic moment. We were fortunate to watch together on the big screens of the ball room as the motorcade to his family home in Mitzpe Hila.

A short program of community leaders and elected officials featured remarks by Federation Chairman Richard V. Sandler, Consul General David Siegel, ILC Co-Chair Eli Tene, Cantors Nathan Lamm and Magda Fishman, Rabbi Wolpe, County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, Assemblymember Mike Feuer, City Councilmember Paul Koretz, City Councilmember Dennis Zine, Rabbi Marvin Heir, City Attorney Carmen Trutanich, First Lady Denise Hunter of the F.A.M.E. Church and Pastor Ricardo Escobedo from Christians United for Israel.

While we recognize the complexity of the circumstances of his release, we are overjoyed with the news that Gilad has been reunited with his family and the people of Israel. Please take a moment to write a welcome home message to Gilad now, and we’ll make sure his family receives your message.

We thank everyone who came out this morning, and offer our gratitude for Benny Alagem and the Beverly Hilton for underwriting this event.

Check out coverage of Federation Exec. VP, Andrew Cushnir on this report from Fox 11 News:

Local Jews React to Schalit's Release: MyFoxLA.com

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