December 3, 2006

Conversation Across the Generations

MorningStar board members meet with the Professional Leaders Project (PLP), a network of 20 and 30-something Jewish professionals and volunteers whose goal is to lead the Jewish community in the 21st century. The cross-generational discussion was in response to the recently completed sociological studies that MSC sponsored to explore the changing images of Jewish women, men and children in film and on TV. Characters from Debra Messing's Grace Adler on "Will and Grace" to "Borat" were discussed. The group applauded Sacha Baron Cohen's efforts to expose anti-Semitism and bigotry, but worried about the message to the uneducated and uninformed. Discussed also was the power of the filmmaker and the power of the audience to make positive change.

November 18, 2006

Westchester, New York Meets MTV Alumnus

MorningStar board member Becca Ballon, now working at ABC Entertainment spoke to Hadassah members about her experience being on MTV's reality TV series about a Jewish Sorority. Becca also spoke about her current involvement in with the MorningStar Commission and her work in promoting positive images of Jews in the media. The Hadassah members found her presentation to be illuminating and captivating.

Fall, 2006

MorningStar Releases New Research Results

The MorningStar Commission released a new study on the issue of Young Women's Responses to Mediated Images of Jewish Women. Insight into the iPod Generation and going "Beyond Princesses and Yentas" were the focus of Morningstar's qualitative new research project. The desire for more diversity in characters in film and TV, and the power of the media to affect perception and stereotyping are two of the important points that came out of the research. An internet quantitative research study also supported these findings.

July 25, 2006

MorningStar Speaks at Hadassah National Convention in Tennessee

Thousands of Hadassah members convened in Nashville for the annual Convention. MorningStar Chair, Olivia Cohen-Cutler, participated on a panel entitled "Women Shaping the Future: Choices and Challenges." Joining three other high-level female executives, including Lynn Sherr, national news correspondent, best selling author, Judith Viorst, and Marie Wilson, president and founder of the White House Project, the panelists called for more vigilance in promoting female leadership. Dr. Shulamit Reinharz, sociology professor and head of the Brandeis Women Studies department and founder and director of the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute, moderated this eye-opening and informative panel discussion.

May 9, 2006

Chapter Installations in St. Louis, Missouri and Santa Barbara, California

In St. Louis and Santa Barbara, MorningStar board member Sharon Krischer presented a lively MSC video presentation on women in film and television. The videos give an overview of the MorningStar Commission's work in mentoring, research and programming to further their mission of promoting positive and diverse images of Jewish women in the media.

May 7-8, 2006

Conference on a Theatrical Presentation

Hadassah members assembled at the Desert Mountain conference to engage in the presentation of MorningStar board member Stephanie Liss' play "Daughter of my People" (the Henrietta Szold story). The play is about the remarkable Henrietta Szold who created the first Hadassah program for women. The Hadassah program excerpted and highlighted parts of Stephanie's play to emphasize its significance.

May 5-7, 2006

MorningStar at UC Davis, California

MSC board member Andrea King participated in the Shabbat ceremony and installation Event for the Sigma Alpha Epsilon Pi sorority. The sorority welcomes all female students at UC Davis interested in Jewish culture. The fun-filled event took place at the UC Davis campus. Over 120 college students attended.

April 30, 2006

Second Annual Jewish Women in the Arts Event in Denver, Colorado

The Denver / LEA chapters hosted their Women in the Arts event and MorningStar board member, Paula Silver presented a speech and video. Over 200 women attended and Paula Silver enthralled the group with her personal experiences involving image-making and film publicity.

April 5, 2006

Fundraiser in Detroit, Michigan

MorningStar board member playwright and screenwriter, Stephanie Liss spoke to Hadassah "Keepers of the Gate" about the changing images of Jewish women in the media. The luncheon was a very successful fundraiser.

April 2, 2006

Southern New England Region Panel in Newton, Massachusetts

Hosted by Hadassah's NYLAC and the Jewish Community Center, MorningStar presented two programs In Newton, Massachusetts. Three MorningStar board members were on a panel to discuss film, TV and the changing images of Jews. The panel featured Laraine Newman ("Seventh Heaven," "Saturday Night Live") Olivia Cohen-Cutler and Rebecca Ballon as representatives of Morning Star. The three women presented two major Programs focusing on the changing ways Jewish women are portrayed in film and television. More than 150 college and high school students attended the first program and over 125 women attended the afternoon event. Question and answer sessions were energetic and thought-provoking.