Linda & Scott Paris

For me, growing up Jewish was not a conscious choice; it was a natural way of life. My family maintained traditions, supported Jewish causes and, most memorable to me, celebrated holidays together, with all our extended family. We were connected through tradition and practiced our faith with pride.

As my own family grew, my husband Scott and I watched as new family joined our holiday gatherings, while the pioneers our elders passed on.

Through it all, the prevailing message was continuity. And that was the same motivation that inspired me to commit my Lion of Judah gift as an endowment.

My commitment announces my voice as a woman while also demonstrating to my children the importance of giving. Having an endowment with The Jewish Foundation forever attaches my name and my family to what we value.

At a very dark time in my life, I turned to volunteerism as a way of coping with my hardship. It was then that I befriended other female volunteers who shared the same passion for and commitment to community. I realize it was a natural progression from my early years, when Jewish values played such a central role in my life and never dissipated. And now, with four grown children, Brandon (and his wife Dory), Ashley, David and Corey, my effort to maintain certain values and traditions has been extended.

My most important life achievement is family and woven within that is the commitment to my values. If my husband and I can be half as successful as our parents, we would consider ourselves a success. One way by which we can emulate them is through our support of the Foundation. Not only does it benefit the community but it also teaches our children a most revered Jewish practice, which will continue long after we are gone.