JEWS IN THE NEWS2019-05-02T12:59:55-04:00

Douglas C. Emhoff

September 3rd, 2020|

Douglas C. Emhoff (born Oct. 13, 1964) is an American entertainment lawyer and the husband of U.S. Senator and 2020 Democratic vice presidential nominee Kamala Harris. He was born to Michael and Barbara Emhoff in Brooklyn, and moved to California as a teenager. His family is Jewish. Emhoff graduated from the California State University, Northridge and the USC Gould School of Law. He is an entertainment litigator. He was previously married to Kerstin Emhoff, with whom he has two children, Cole and Ella. His children were raised Jewish. He married Kamala Harris on August 22, 2014, in Santa Barbara, CA.

Peter Madoff

September 3rd, 2020|

Peter Madoff, brother of disgraced financier Bernie Madoff, has been released from federal custody. He served a 10-year sentence in a federal prison in Miami for his involvement in his brother’s Ponzi scheme, which was worth almost $65 billion — the largest in history and one that inflicted heavy financial losses on investors, many of them Jewish.

In June 2012, under a plea deal, he admitted guilt to charges of conspiracy and fabricating investment records. He was sentenced the following December and was transferred from the Miami federal prison to home confinement in November 2019. Bernie Madoff, 82, pleaded guilty to 11 crimes in 2009 and is currently serving a 150-year sentence at a federal prison in Butner, NC.

Sheldon Silver

August 2nd, 2020|

Former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver has been sentenced to 6-1/2 years in prison for bribery and extortion. He was also fined $1 million. As previously reported by The Jewish Voice, close to $5 million was received by Silver from estate developers and a cancer researcher in exchange for Silver using his position of influence for their gain. The funds were then laundered in private investment vehicles.

Silver was first convicted in 2015, which was affirmed in 2018. After various appeals, District Judge Valerie Caproni of Federal District Court in Manhattan rejected the appeals, calling Silver “guilty of corruption, plain and simple,” and imposed sentence.


Ruth Bader Ginsburg

August 2nd, 2020|

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has said that her cancer has returned, but ruled out retirement from the nation’s highest court. Ginsburg, 87, said in a statement released by the Supreme Court, that she has been receiving chemotherapy every two weeks since May 19, which has reduced lesions on her liver. “I have often said I would remain a member of the court as long as I can do the job full-steam,” she said. “I remain fully able to do that.”

Ginsburg’s statement was released one day after she was released from Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore for the treatment of a possible infection. Ginsburg, who has sat on America’s highest court since 1993, has experienced a number of health issues over the past few years. Earlier this year, she was hospitalized with an infection in her gallbladder. In August 2019, she underwent radiation for a tumor on her pancreas. In December 2018, she had surgery to remove cancerous nodules from her lungs.

Alexander Vindman

August 2nd, 2020|

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman, a key witness in President Donald Trump’s impeachment inquiry, retired from the U.S. Army after more than 21 years of military service. According to Vindman’s attorney, David Pressmen, his client determined that his future in the armed forces “will forever be limited” due to political retaliation by the President and his allies. Vindman has endured a “campaign of bullying, intimidation and retaliation” spearheaded by the President following his testimony in the impeachment inquiry last year, Pressman said.

News of Vindman’s retirement marks the culmination of a months-long saga dating back to his public testimony in November. Trump fired Vindman as the top Ukraine expert on the National Security Council in February, and also ousted his twin brother, who also played a key role in impeachment proceedings while serving at the White House as an NSC lawyer.

In recent weeks, the controversy has centered on allegations that the White House was attempting to block Vindman’s upcoming military promotion to the rank of colonel.

Rabbi Delphine Horvilleur

August 2nd, 2020|

On Tuesday nights, at 8:30, tens of thousands of people throughout France — believers and nonbelievers, Jews, Muslims and Christians — log on to Facebook to hear the nation’s foremost female rabbi discuss the intersection of racism and anti-Semitism, and help them make sense of a modern plague.

Horvilleur, 45, who has been called a rock star in a leather jacket, is a former model who has appeared on the cover of French Elle. The wild curls framing her face have been compared to the sidelocks of Hasidic Jews. She finds the descriptions amusing insofar as they counter stereotypes and help her reach audiences across cultures.

“I’m trying to create bridges between worlds that have stopped talking to each other,” she said. “I’m trying to create links between words and worlds.”

Horvilleur, one of only four female rabbis in France, is also known as the rare public intellectual who has brought faith into the conversation in a country committed to secularism. And although she is also one of the few progressive rabbis in France’s overwhelmingly Orthodox Jewish community, she has become a leader of a growing movement of Jews from all denominations.

“The Hebrew Bible is full of stories of leaders like Abraham, who were called to leave their birthplace to journey to an unknown region,” she said. “We are who we are because we were willing to go on another path. Judaism is a religion of becoming.”


Luis Fux

August 2nd, 2020|

Brazil has appointed Luis Fux, 67, as the first Jewish Justice Minister of the Supreme Federal Court. In 2011, he became the first Jewish judge to be named to the Bench of the Court. Brazil rotates the post of Chief Justice among the 11 members who comprise its Federal Supreme Court, a panel that decides constitutional matters and final appeals.