At this year’s 166th JFS Annual Meeting, Jerry and Ann Samford will be honored with the Shamash Award, one of the highest awards bestowed on those who are recognized leaders in the Richmond Jewish community as well as supporters of JFS. The Shamash is the candle in the menorah that serves and lights the other candles, reflecting the impact of those receiving the award. Jerry and Ann have been an integral part of the JFS “family”, advocating for the agency and those we serve.
The Samford’s dedication to community collaboration has had a deep and far-reaching impact on the agency. As part of the steering committee for Draw Back the Curtain (DBtC), they worked on the film from conception, through planning and execution. During his board presidency Jerry spurred positive youth engagement, partnering with The University of Richmond on DBtC and establishing a student position on the JFS board. The partnerships Jerry has built with Circle Center Adult Day Care and other community service providers have strengthened our agency.
Jerry and Ann have been committed to preserving JFS’ History, through DBtC, as well as “Rich History”. Rich History is a project led and executed by Ann, designed to better share JFS stories. Ann spent months taking beautiful and moving photos of JFS clients, preserving their stories and experiences at the agency. Sharing these stories will ensure our history is preserved for coming generations, and pave the way for continued success in the future.
Past award recipients of the Shamash Award include: Sydney and Frances Lewis (2001), Rudy and Esther Bunzl (2002), Barbara and William B. Thalhimer, Jr. (2003), Abby Moore (2004), Patricia Asch (2005), Susan and Art Davis (2007), Shelley and Richard Birnbaum (2009) and Harry Grandis (2011).