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Celebration of Eshel

June 4 at 7:00 pm

Honoring our 13th Year: Celebration of Eshel | In Conversation with Modi | Tuesday June 4, 7:00 pm, The Prince George Ballroom

Join us for a night of fun and comedy as we celebrate Eshel! Over the past 13 years we have worked together to build LGBTQ+ inclusive orthodox communities, and we’re honored to invite you to celebrate with us at a cocktail reception and program hosted by comedian Talia Reese featuring a conversation with Modi and his partner Leo Veiga.

7:00 pm Dinner and drinks
8:00 pm Presentation of Honorees
8:45 pm Interview with Modi
10:00 pm Dessert

We are thrilled to recognize honorees Lenny and Suzi Fuld and Shlomo Ashkinazy for their commitment to supporting our critical work. 

Shlomo Ashkinazy

Shlomo Ashkinazy became active in the Gay Rights Movement in 1970, just one year after the Stonewall Rebellion. Soon after, he chaired several committees for the Gay Activists Alliance, became a founding member of the National Lesbian and Gay Task Force, and became the first openly Gay person to earn an MSW. After co-founding the Association of Lesbian and Gay Social Workers, Shlomo successfully advocated for policy change and increased sensitivity training for New York State’s Children’s Services. Shlomo continued his advocacy for LGBT children in foster care, going on to co-found the Hetrick-Martin Institute in 1979 and creating the world’s first Gay high school, Harvey Milk High School. Additionally, he opened NYC’s first shelter for homeless LGBT youth, Madrigal House, and served as its Executive Director. 

In 1979, while serving as a marshal during a demonstration against the film Cruising, Shlomo became the victim of Police Brutality. After winning a lawsuit against the city for the beating that he sustained, and which landed him in the hospital, Shlomo used that victory to introduce Gay sensitivity training to Police Precincts in Greenwich Village. 

As a guest on the Phil Donahue Show in 1985, Shlomo Ashkinazy was the first person to ever appear on television and speak about reconciling the identities of being both Gay and an Orthodox Jew. Shlomo has been working since then to help others reconcile these identities as well. Since 1983, Shlomo has facilitated a support group for Gay Orthodox Jewish men. Shlomo is also proud to have served as a consultant and to have been featured on the 2001 groundbreaking documentary, “Trembling Before G-d.” He has been a frequent speaker at screenings of this film in synagogues, churches and community organizations, promoting LGBTQ+ acceptance within the religious community, and supporting the role of religion in the lives of LGBTQ+ people. Shlomo has served on Eshel’s board since 2013.

Susan and Leonard Fuld

Almost immediately after their son Avi came out in 2012, Suzi and Lenny have been involved with Eshel. When Avi signed up to attend his first Eshel retreat, his parents said; “That sounds like a great idea, can we come too?”. His answer was very clear, “No!” This led Suzi and Lenny to reach out to Eshel to figure out how they, as parents, could get support, and more than that, how they could help support other parents. The parent support initiatives started with a phone in group, and culminated at the end of the year with Eshel’s first parent retreat. Since then Eshel has had 11 parent retreats; Eshel’s parent support programs, including the parent retreat and parent support groups have served hundreds of parents, affecting the lives of over a thousand LGBTQ+ Orthodox children.

Suzi and Lenny are the parents of 4 adult children, 4 children-in-law, and 3 grandchildren. Suzi has been an early childhood educator, special needs advocate, and communal volunteer for four decades. Suzi is proud to be the first straight member of the Eshel board, where she has served for almost 10 years. She believes that each of us, whether LGBTQ or straight, can help propel Eshel’s mission forward.  

Lenny, founder of Fuld & Co. and The Intelligent Nonprofit, has helped Eshel grow using the field of competitive intelligence and continues to be the force behind Eshel’s strategic growth and PR campaigns. Lenny has consulted with Eshel in the areas of public relations and long-range planning by leading strategy sessions, creating surveys, and writing reports. 

Lenny and Suzi have dedicated countless hours to help develop and grow Eshel’s parent programs. Eshel was there for them when they most needed it; and now the Fulds want to be there for those who will follow.

Host Committee

Robin and Daniel Amster
Rabbi Gavriel Bellino
Cliff Boro
Elaine Chapnik and Felicity Arengo
Stefanie and Matt Diamond
Yitz Preis and Scott Ettinger
Richard and Sabina Feczko
Ike Fisher and Lourdes Suarez
Dana Friedman
Avi and Andrew Fuld
Greg Gershman and Peninah Taragin Gershman
Chana and Noam Hiltzik
Kevin Jennings
Miryam Kabakov and Mara Benjamin

Simon Kaminetsky
Marjorie and Ed Letzter
Yocheved and Nathan Lindenbaum
Miriam and Ira Parness
Leo Paige and Benjamin Picket
Jessica and Gary Rozenshteyn
Yehudit and Meyer Shields
Julie Sissman and Phil Richter
Tzvi and Alyson Small
Gil and Leon Treger
Kenny Wagner
Michal and Noam Weinberger
Chavie Weisberger
Ely Winkler


Aviv Foundation
E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation
Micah Foundation (Ann and Jeremy Pava, Trustees)
Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Philanthropies


June 4
7:00 pm