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JGS board honors Burrows

Date: 5/29/2015

LONGMEADOW – Jewish Geriatric Services, Inc. (JGS) hosted its Annual Meeting May 19, providing membership the opportunity to thank all who provided service, to honor talented and caring leaders and to elect officers and directors of JGS and all subsidiaries. Martin Baicker, president and CEO, JGS, said, “We are at a crossroads in our 103-year journey, bridging past and future with Project Transformation, which will transform our campus and the care we provide. JGS is a learning organization. We will enhance services for elders.”

Dr. Robert Baevsky, chair, JGS Board of Directors, awarded William Burrows with the annual Chairman’s Service Award, for 35 years of outstanding service, stewardship, and volunteerism. Baevsky said it was an honor to pay tribute to “a man with an ever-present smile and the talent to turn the ordinary into something extraordinary.”

Burrows, the former owner, along with his dearly departed wife Esther, of Wm. Burrows Florist in Longmeadow, has helped plan themes, table settings and décor for several signature JGS events, from annual donor and Passover dinners to the Frankel-Kinsler Golf Classic.

His involvement with JGS began in 1980, when his friend and business neighbor Seymour Frankel was getting the Kinsler Classic underway with his wife and the Herman Kinsler families. Frankel asked for his friend’s help with decorations for the tournament, and Burrows not only agreed, he cultivated a dedication and devotion to JGS that’s spanned three decades.

Burrows has served on a number of development and event committees. For the past twelve years, he’s also lent a hand on “Honorable Menschen Day,” December 25, assisting residents and employees of the Leavitt Family Jewish Home and Ruth’s House. A member of the JGS Circle of Honor, he’s also enriched the lives of our residents and families alike through planned giving at the highest level, and has also helped raise funds in support of JGS.

Burrows thanked the JGS Board of Directors, staff, and his friend Seymour Frankel for the honor. He said when Frankel approached him about getting involved with JGS, he answered with a “resounding yes, which has continued for 35 years.”

Members then voted on the appointments of corporators, board members and officers, as required by corporate bylaws. James Rosenthal was elected to a new two-year term on the JGS Board of Directors. Changes to the officers and directors of JGS subsidiaries included Eric Berg elected as chairman of both the Jewish Nursing Home and Ruth’s House; Brad Foster elected as treasurer for Genesis House; and Mark Katz elected as a director of Genesis House, filling vacancies left by departing board members Michael Hurwitz, Michael Ginsburg and Donald Frank, who were recognized for their service.

Susan Kimball Halpern, vice president of Philanthropy, said $6 million dollars has been raised  through the Project Transformation Campaign to date, half represented by a naming gift for the Sosin Center for Rehabilitation. Members also learned of the Grinspoon Foundation’s $500,000 challenge grant that will be matched to all new gifts, as well as increased gifts to the campaign.