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Green Valley Country Club: A Legacy of Leadership
Anthony Sherr was destined to be the president of Green Valley Country Club. You might even say that it is in his gene pool. Sherr's parents, Linda and Ron Sherr, have been members of the Lafayette Hill club since 1964. The Blue Bell attorney recalls accompanying his father to his first Green Valley Federation Day dinner at the age of 13. "I've been in attendance ever since," he said.
Sherr and his wife, Margie, took out their own membership in 1987, when the couple returned to the area after time in Washington, D.C. For Sherr, club involvement is truly a family affair, as his mother-in-law, Gail Clarke, is also an active member.
While Sherr considers the club's "family-friendly atmosphere, excellent golf course and athletic facilities" as major factors in his decision to join, he emphasizes that the club's historic commitment to Federation and other charitable organizations was the deal breaker.
"Green Valley's ongoing commitment to the local Jewish community through Federation is one of the things that sets us apart," he explained, adding that "... Every successful candidate for membership must demonstrate charitable participation. Members are expected to continue their charitable participation by contributing time and financial support to Federation."
Ron Sherr, who served as co-chair of the 2010 Green Valley Federation Day along with his son, opines that membership enhanced his personal involvement in the Jewish community.
"The leaders of Green Valley were also the leaders of the Jewish community, and they quickly reminded me of my obligations to my fellow Jews," he said.
The elder Sherr maintains that people like Morris Kravitz, Ronald Rubin, Bernard Fishman and Theodore Seidenberg "set great examples for me."
From these mentors, he discovered that "the warm feeling in my heart that I get from being able to help those less fortunate was far more important than winning a $2 Nassau at golf."
He said that he and his wife strived to carry on these traditions of tzedakah with their own children. "Our son Tony's high level of Jewish community involvement demonstrates that we have succeeded," he said.
No Surprise Here
The fact that Green Valley is so supportive of Federation and other Jewish community organizations comes as no surprise to Stephen Moss, a third-generation club member and a co-chair of GVCC's Young Leadership Committee. He explained that "Green Valley was founded by Jewish men in the early 1900s who were looking for a club that would accept them, since others in the Philadelphia area did not welcome Jewish members."
Moss, whose father, Stanton, and grandfather, George Sall, were club presidents, added that "it is only natural that the club strived to honor and support Jewish Federation, and other Jewish philanthropic organizations, and we try to continue to honor those traditions in an increasingly integrated society."
Moss, who joined the club 10 years ago when he returned to the area, co-chaired Federation Day at Green Valley with his father in 2007. He considers Federation his major philanthropic connection with the Greater Philadelphia Jewish community: "I have been active with Federation's Renaissance affinity group, leading the group's Rendezvous Series in 2005-07 and co-chairing its 2007 Ben-Gurion Society Main Event." In 2009, he joined the National Young Jewish Leadership Cabinet.
Stanton Moss, a member of the club's Leadership Committee, has been involved with GVCC since 1959. He says that "the names of GVCC members appear on the board of directors of numerous Philadelphia area charitable organizations."
Moss points with great pride to the club's longstanding tradition of "Federation Day," as well as a separate annual event in support of State of Israel Bonds -- organizations that both are important to Moss and his wife, Carole. The couple was honored by the Bonds organization in 2001, and Moss has served on the board of JEVS Human Services, a Federation-supported agency.
Ken Dash, a GVCC vice president, defines club membership as a treasured family tradition.
"My parents, Alan and Marilyn Dash, joined GVCC in the mid-1970s, and I have fond childhood memories of the club, including having my Bar Mitzvah there in 1979," he says.
Dash takes pride in his father's active involvement in GVCC throughout the years: "He has served on the Board of Governors and chaired several committees. Dad's selfless commitment of time and energy has inspired me to carry on this service to our club which has become my extended family."
He took out his own membership in 1990, when he moved back to the area after college.
"Today, I am fortunate to enjoy GVCC with my wife, Kelly, and children, Jack and Melissa," he says, adding that his son will have his Bar Mitzvah celebration there next spring.
The Dashes are involved in Federation and numerous other charitable organizations. Ken is a member of Federation's Board of Trustees, and Kelly is active in Federation's Women's Philanthropy. They are also involved at their synagogue, Temple Beth Hillel/Beth El in Wynnewood.
"Kelly is a teacher in the congregation's preschool and chairs many synagogue committees," says Dash, who emphasizes that "our family feels strongly about education, and are leading supporters of the Children's Scholarship Fund of Philadelphia."
Scott Erlbaum also has grown up at GVCC, and notes the club's tradition of supporting Federation. He is especially proud that his stepfather, Federation President Leonard Barrack, spoke at the club's 2010 Federation Day program, which inspired members to raise $2,251,411 for Federation's 2010 annual campaign.
Erlbaum, who is the son of Lynne Barrack and the nephew of Gary Erlbaum -- both veteran Jewish communal leaders -- concurs with Leonard Barrack's emphasis on embodying Jewish traditions of tzedakah and tikkun olam through personal leadership, in addition to philanthropic support of Federation and other Jewish organizations.
Scott and his wife, LeeAnn, are involved in Federation. He as a member of its Renaissance affinity group for young adults and its Ben-Gurion Society, as well as service on Federation's Marketing Advisory Committee, and she as a co-chair of children's programming for the 2010 Federation Super Sunday and a participant in numerous Women's Philanthropy events.
Both are believers in the value of a Jewish day-school education in developing a strong personal Jewish identity, as well as a sense of connection to the Jewish community locally, in Israel and around the world.
Said Erlbaum: "I am so very blessed to be able to send our daughter, Mia, and son, Jacob, to Perelman Jewish Day School where our youngest, Talia, will start kindergarten in the fall."