BNC President’s Message: Philanthropy ~~ Learning ~~ Community


Greetings everyone,

The end of January marks the completion of three special events.  In early January we held the annual University on Wheels.  For our newer members, this is an annual event wherein Brandeis University sends each chapter a faculty member to make a presentation.  This year on January 8 our chapter was very fortunate to host Professor William “Billy” Flesch, Professor of English, who presented “HOW MOVIES WORK’.

This was an outstanding lecture that focused on the essentials for script writing, cinematography, editing and acting that became standards in the industry from the beginnings of filmmaking. There was a lively Q and A session and those attending had an informative and entertaining experience. University on Wheels is always an outstanding program and I urge everyone to put this event on your January calendar for next year.

Game Day, held in conjunction with Sabra Hadassah, was a big success with 97 attendees. There were door prizes galore and a good time was had by all.

One other program, Bridging Cultures, is scheduled for January 31. Cecilia Cohen will present her usual excellent and intelligent program on foreign cultures, this time on North Korea.  Attendees will lunch on food from the region at a Korean restaurant, and learn about the cultures, traditions and challenges.  If you haven’t signed up, please do.  You are in for an educational and entertaining afternoon.

Our next very big event is the Gala at CODA Gallery. This is our major fund raiser for the year and I urge you to attend.  The money we raise goes to important neuroscience research at Brandeis and we need every member in our chapter to support this effort.

And there is an additional factor for members to consider.  Your special events team, the entire planning committee and individual members, work all year to plan events and study groups for our members enjoyment. I ask you to actively support those efforts by your attendance.

I hope to see you at the upcoming events.

Marcia Plumleigh, President



Annual General Board Meeting 2019

Annual General Board Meeting
January 21, 2019

Board Meeting, 9:30am
General Meeting with Keynote Speaker Ron Celona, 10:30am

12169 Turnberry Drive, Rancho Mirage
Home of Gail Baum and Larry Fox

All Brandeis Members are invited and encouraged to attend and bring prospective members. Guests can attend the Board Meeting and General Meeting to learn more about who we are and what we do!

Keynote Speaker
Ron Celona

Ron Celona, Artistic Director of Coachella Valley Repertory will give us an inside look at CV Rep, what it takes to put a new play together and also an inside look at what it took to establish CV Rep’s new home. Click here for Ron Celona’s bio.

BNC Encore Series: New Student Book DiscussionForum


June 2017

Dear Brandeis National Committee Members,

Help connect our chapter members with Brandeis University as we join all of the incoming Brandeis first year students in the annual New Student Forum.

Students read the same book and hear directly from the author in a special presentation this fall.

As part of BNC’s Encore Series, you too can be part of the New Student Forum. Discussion questions and a DVD of the author’s presentation will be available at the end of September.

This year’s book is called “Citizen: An American Lyric” by Claudia Rankine. Winner of the National Book Critics award in poetry, Claudia Rankine’s book recounts mounting racial aggressions in twenty-first-century daily life and in the media. In essay, image and poetry, Citizen is a powerful testament to the individual and collective effects of racism in our contemporary society.

In these troubled times, where we are facing questions regarding racism, antisemitism and the like, Brandeis University chose this book as a discussion point for where to go from here, ways to improve society and care for the future.
We look forward to hearing what you think and hope that you enjoy this Brandeis experience!


For more information, please contact Tamar Vogel at 781-736-4168 or


Student Stories

Update:  Click on name (if highlighted) to hear what the student has to say about the Brandeis experience….


Meet Brandeis Scholar Remi Miller ’19 
A BNC Scholar from Kings Park, New York, on Long Island, Remi just completed her sophomore year. At Brandeis,  Remi’s primary areas of academic focus are psychology and legal studies. She is an active member of the campus community, serving as a Brandeis National Committee Student Ambassador, an Orientation leader and a Reunion liaison.

Meet Brandeis Scholar Jacob Abrams ’17  Jacob Abrams
A BNC Scholar from Boca Raton, Florida, Jacob is pre-med, with a double major in biology and classical studies and a minor in Italian studies. While at Brandeis, he has been involved with the BNC as director of the Student Ambassador program and a member of BNC’s National Executive Committee. Jacob chose Brandeis because it encourages undergraduates to take advantage of many opportunities to gain leadership experience that will help them throughout their lives.

Meet Brandeis Scholar Rebecca Wiser ’19  Rebecca Weiser
A BNC Scholar from Boca Raton, Florida, Rebecca plans to major in either Journalism or Health: Science, Society and Policy. Her ultimate goal is to become a life coach and health and wellness consultant. Rebecca chose Brandeis because of its commitment to social justice and its close-knit campus community, which values kindness, integrity and service to others.

Meet Brandeis Scholar Cassidy Swartz ’16 Cassidy Swartz
A BNC Scholar from Arizona, Cassidy is a Health: Science, Society and Policy major and soccer player at Brandeis. She volunteers at Newton-Wellesley hospital and tutors an elementary school student on top of a full load of courses. Cassidy plans to become a physician’s assistant upon graduating from Brandeis, a profession she believes will help her use what she has learned at Brandeis to help others. Hear her explain in this brief video why she is proud to attend the nation’s only non-sectarian university founded by the American Jewish community and how this experience has transformed her life.

Book and Author 2015-2016

The Book, Author, & Boutique was held at the Indian Wells Golf Resort Ballroom on March 23. Our keynote speaker was Tod Goldberg, Administrative Director of the MFA Creative Writing Program at UCR, Palm Desert Campus and author of the best selling “Gangsterland.” His presentation was an interesting and amusing insight into his journey as both a writer of mystery fiction and as a journalist.

Sheila Finch, a prolific author of science fiction and winner of the Nebula Award, talked about the problems in communication which would arise should mankind ever contact extraterrestrials. John Schwartz, a poet and author as well as a most successful businessman, discussed his novel “In the Shadow of Babylon” – partly written as a guide to life for his children.

Guests had the opportunity to shop at a truly lovely boutique organized by Lorraine Lubin. The offerings were delightful and varied and showed real expertise in the selection of vendors. We are hoping to expand this part of our program in the future.


All attendees must be Brandeis members.


show case picture

COORDINATOR: Irv Cohen 760 772-6436
WHEN: Second Monday of each month at 7 PM
WHERE: Members’ homes
DESCRIPTION: Very informal format
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Maggie Henderson 760 772-7537;
WHEN: Second Monday of each month at 7PM
WHERE: The first meeting will be organizational and held at Maggie Henderson’s home: 39332 Fernwood Glen Ct. (Sun City) on November 9, 2015 at 7 PM.
DESCRIPTION: Group members will be using Pushcart Prize 2014 to discuss essays, poetry and short stories chosen by the facilitator.
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Bayla Adelman 760 568-9621;
WHEN: Second Tuesday of each month at 1:30 PM.
WHERE: Members’ homes. The first meeting will be held on November 10, 2015 at the home of Bayla Adelman, 43 Blue River Dr. (The Lakes)Palm Desert 92211.
DESCRIPTION: The group will choose books for discussion. Members will facilitate discussions.
COST: $15

movie reel picture

COORDINATOR: Linda Seligman 760 565-6880;
WHEN: Third Tuesday of each month at 1:30 PM. The first meeting, date, film and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Members’ homes. DESCRIPTION: Current and classic movies. Members decide films to see. COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Wendy Rudlin 760 772-1365
WHEN: Second Tuesday of each month at 10:30 AM
LOCATION: At movie theater
DESCRIPTION: Members meet at the theater. Lunch follows. Movies are selected by members based on their interests.
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Marcia Plumleigh 760 360-1084;
WHEN: Second Tuesday of each month at 7 PM. The first meeting, date, film and location will be sent by email.
LOCATION: Members’ homes. The first meeting, date, film and location will be sent by email.
DESCRIPTION: Members see the films on their own. Discussions will be held at members’ homes.
COST: $15


COORDINATOR: Jean Fishkin 760 346-6747
WHEN: Third Tuesday of each month at 10 AM. The first meeting, date, film and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Members’ homes
DESCRIPTION: Discussion of current matters at a home followed by lunch (optional).
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Candy Warner 760 636-4820
WHEN: Second Friday of each month at 5 PM The first meeting, date, film and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Various restaurants
DESCRIPTION: Join us in dining out a little early . A different host will choose the restaurant and send out a notice to members. We like to get “early bird” prices and individual checks.
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Gerry Weiss 760 772-8196;
WHEN: First Tuesday of each month at noon. The first meeting, date, film and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Various restaurants
DESCRIPTION: Male members of Brandeis will get together to enjoy lunch at various restaurants. Topics for discussion may include current news, sports and jokes…or whatever the group likes. The cost for lunch will be approximately $15, including beverage.
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Linda Bergman 760 200-2037;
WHEN: Fourth Tuesday of each month at noon. The first meeting, date, restaurant and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Various restaurants.
DESCRIPTION: Subjects of discussion vary at each lunch. Separate checks when possible; prix fixe, including drink, tip and tax approximately $25. COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Beverly Ross 760 771-3335
WHEN: 4 times from November thru April date.The first meeting, date, restaurant and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Members’ homes
DESCRIPTION: Each event will be hosted by two members in a member’s home. The hosts are responsible for providing the main dish for brunch; all other participants will bring a dish to share.
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Joan Isaacs 760 360-4423;
WHEN: November 2015 through March 2016
WHERE: McCallum and Coachella Valley Repertory Theaters and Joan Isaac’s home.
DESCRIPTION: Four plays will be seen and discussed. A no host dinner at a restaurant will follow each performance. Joan will purchase tickets for each performance approximately 1-3 months in advance. The plays, dates, times and costs for members/non members and guests will be distributed at Showcase, and also sent to members by email. Discounted tickets will be available for members only. Guests will pay full price. Make all checks payable to Joan Isaacs, 37209 Skycrest Road, Palm Desert 92211
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Bob Starr 760 200-0208/401 965-5419
WHEN: Third Tuesday of each month at 7 PM. The first meeting topic and location will be sent by email.
WHERE: Members’ homes
DESCRIPTION: Male members of Brandeis get together to discuss one hot topic per meeting; a hot topic for the next meeting is also chosen. COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Rose Levy 760 345-1747;
WHEN: First Thursday of each month from 1-3 PM,. First meeting will be at Rose Levy’s home, 78075 Banyon Grove Ct.
DESCRIPTION: Discussion of issues of particular importance to women. Topics can range from social issues, health and well being, and even fashion tips. Each member will host one meeting and will determine subjects to be discussed. (Sun City)
COST: $15

COORDINATOR: Joan Flam 760 772-2979;
WHEN: Third Tuesday of each month at 7 PM. First meeting will be November 17, 2015 at 7 PM
WHERE: home of Joan Flam, 78541 Moonstone Lane
DESCRIPTION: Each member will bring a news clipping, material or questions about a timely topic concerning the law.
COST: $15

COORDINATORS: Judith Levine 760 772-7593; 847-767-9928;; Yarol Rudman 760469-2785;
WHEN: Third Tuesday of each month, 1-3 PM
WHERE: Members homes; First organizational meeting will be held on Tuesday, December 15, 2015 at 1 PM at the home of Judith Levine, 78257 Bonanza (Sun City).
DESCRIPTION: The group will discuss the lives of women, past and present, who have made a significant impact on the world, society and/or their community. Members will select the women for discussion at the first organizational meeting.

COORDINATORS: Yarol Rudman 760-469-2785 & Judith Shultz 760-200-8673
WHEN: First Friday of each month at 9:30 AM. The first meeting will be held on November 10, 2015 at the home of Judith Shultz, 37183 Mojave Sage St.
WHERE: Members homes
DESCRIPTION: Group will read designated chapters in the book, “You Never Call, You Never Write,” by Brandeis author Joyce Antler, to stimulate discussions on the history of the Jewish mother, and our relationships with family and friends in an atmosphere of sharing and humor. Each member will serve as facilitator when the meeting is at her home.
COST: $15