Friends and Neighbors

Historic preservation group presents scholarships


Special to The Miami Herald

Congratulations to architecture scholarship winners Francela Veliz and Talia Cires, who were recognized by the Historic Preservation of Coral Gables Association with $1,000 scholarships at the recent University of Miami School of Architecture Honors Ceremony.

Veliz and Cires were chosen for their proven academic achievement and interest in the area of historic preservation.

HPACG President Ann Goodman and member Maria Alicia Ajit presented the scholarships with School of Architecture Dean Elizabeth P later-Zyberk and Jorge L. Hernandez, professor and coordinator of the Historic Preservation Certificate Program, also in attendance.

“HPACG is proud to support students who are passionate about historic preservation. We wish them well in their future endeavors and hope they continue to pursue their interests,” Goodman said.

The Historic Preservation Association of Coral Gables was founded in 1991 with the mission to “support an environment in which its members and all community citizens can understand, appreciate, exchange information and live with Coral Gables history.”


Twenty-seven employees received recognition for their fifth, 10th and 15th anniversaries with Jewish Community Services at the recent 13th annual meeting. Four staff members were singled out for exceptional longevity: 20-year employees Donna Cutler, Aracely Montano and Susan Nierenberg; and 25-year employee Bridget Cross.

The celebration of good works over the past year also included recognition of

the Winn-Dixie Stores’ support of the JCS Kosher Food Bank. The Closet boutique was recognized and named a Community Partner for selling gently used clothing at discounted prices to those in need and then donating the proceeds to the JCS Kosher Food Bank.

Ross Stores was recognized as Employer of the Year for hiring more than 20 deaf or hard-of-hearing clients of JCS’ Deaf and Hearing Employment Services Program. And Darnell Williams, a formerly homeless client of JCS’ Day Labor Training Program and now a supervisor with the city of Miami Department of Sanitation, was given the Outstanding Achievement Award for overcoming many personal obstacles.

JCS Board Chair Richard Hoffman welcomed 100 guests at the event and President and CEO Fred Stock spoke about the agency’s future plans.

“Among our new initiatives is a program offering psychological and educational assessments and treatment for children and teens throughout Miami-Dade. Our goal, within the next year, is to open a center that provides an array of testing and counseling services regardless of the family’s ability to pay,” Stock said in a release.

The program included the installations of a new board member, Ron Friedman, CPA, and of current board Vice Chair Dan Jacobson as chair elect. JCS annually serves over 25,000 people, regardless of race, religion or ethnic background, with mental health, senior support and vocational programs. For more call 305-576-6550 or visit


Make a family plan to experience Jacques Offenbach’s The Tales of Hoffmann performed free by the Riuniti Opera and Alhambra Orchestra. Alfred Gershfeld will conduct and the talented cast of singers includes Beverly Coulter, Eddie Valdés, Steven Bourdeau, Enrique Estrada, Jared Peroune, Erica Williams, Danielle Sanda, and Elizabeth Doriety.

The first concert will be held in collaboration with the Greater Miami Youth Symphony camp. A 50-minute, just-for-kids performance will take place at 10 a.m. Thursday at the South Miami High School auditorium, 6856 SW 53rd St. Children from the community are invited.

The second performance, for adults and families, is sponsored by Temple Beth Am and will be at 4 p.m. July 21 in the auditorium at 5950 N. Kendall Dr. No reservations are needed, but large groups should call in advance.

For more information, call 305-668-9260 or 305-606-8759 or send e-mail to or


Take a walk on the wild side at the discounted price of only $5 until Sunday at Zoo Miami. The discounted admission deal has been offered the past four years by the zoo and Ford Motor Company.

"Zoo Miami is such a great community resource and we want as many families as possible to enjoy it," said Jim Vella, president of Ford Motor Company Fund and Community Services. Zoo guests can see the latest Ford cars from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and receive free items if they register to win a new 2013 Ford Fusion. Other special events are also planned.

“There is always so much to explore and take part in at the zoo, so for $5, it’s really a steal,” said Eric Stephens, Zoo Miami director. “Each visit is like a whole new experience.”

Check out the Zoo Miami app to plan a perfect adventure. And to save time, you can buy your $5 tickets online at

If you have news for this column, please send it to Christina Mayo at

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