Meet the Honorees

Hillary and Bob Zitter
GUESTS OF HONOR

Hillary and Bob Zitter have always known what it means to be productive in meaningful ways in both their personal and professional lives. As parents of two former Bi-Cultural students--Sarah and Adam--and as grandparents of eight grandchildren now, they continue to find time to be leaders in a community that marvels at their professional achievements and appreciates their longstanding community involvement, leadership and generosity.

Hillary and Bob are true models of commitment to family, professional interests, the Jewish community and Bi-Cultural Day School. For decades, they have remained highly engaged with BCDS, playing an important role in ensuring that the school continues to thrive.

Hillary holds a BA from the University of Michigan, a JD from Brooklyn Law School, and an MS in Social Work from Columbia University. She spent 25 years practicing estate and elder law in Washington, D.C. and Stamford before following her passion and obtaining a social work degree. She then worked as a social worker with Connecticut Hospice. She has served on the Boards of Congregation Agudath Sholom and Friends of the Ferguson Library, has been a judge for the library’s Literary Competition, and serves as a tutor for young students in the United Jewish Federation's Reading Partners program. Hillary has also been active in Stamford’s Chevra Kadisha for many years.

Bob's career in the television industry spans 45 years and has been marked by achievement and distinction. In 2013 he retired as Chief Technology Officer of HBO, a position he held for many transformative years. His recognition in the industry includes a technology Emmy Award and induction into the National Cable Television Hall of Fame and the Satellite Industry Hall of Fame. He also received the Vanguard Award from the National Cable Television Association and the Broadcasting & Cable Technology Leadership Award. A graduate of Colgate University, Bob also served in the U.S. Army, and added an MBA in Management to his early accomplishments. Today, he is a Media Technology Advisor and sits on the advisory boards of several companies.

Bob served as President of Congregation Agudath Sholom from 1996-2000 and as President of the Bi-Cultural Day School Board of Trustees, a position he has held for the past six years after many years as a Board Member.

Together, Hillary and Bob have been strong supporters of Jewish day school education, particularly in our community. They have backed many of Bi-Cultural’s music and art programs, professional development programs, and have planted many trees on our campus.

For their leadership, their dedication and their generosity, we honor them. Their commitment to Jewish life and Jewish education is exemplary and we are extremely grateful as a school and community for their unwavering involvement, effort, vision and support.

Kori and Bill Meyers
KETER TORAH AWARD

Kori and Bill Meyers moved to Stamford seventeen years ago and immediately got involved in the Jewish community. They have both committed their time and provided support to many local Jewish organizations.

Kori was raised in Poughkeepsie, NY where she attended public school and was very involved in USY on a local and regional level. Her parents have been pillars of the Jewish community in Poughkeepsie and instilled in her a commitment to community and “Klal Yisrael." She received a BA in Psychology from Brandeis University, where she met Bill, an MA in General Psychology from The New School for Social Research, and earned her PhD in Counseling Psychology from Fordham University in 2002. She spent 5 years as an Associate Professor of Counseling Psychology at Fordham’s Graduate School of Education. During this time, she also worked at BCDS in the Psychology department. She is currently a classroom teacher at the JCC Sara Walker Nursery School.

Kori has served on the Board of Directors at Congregation Agudath Sholom. She was also on the Board of Jewish Family Service, and led the first renovation of the Mikveh as Mikveh Committee Chairperson. She has volunteered on the Chevra Kadisha as well as on numerous committees at BCDS.

Born in New York City, Bill was the first baby allowed into Shabbat morning services at the Jewish Center on the Upper West Side. His family moved to New Rochelle when Bill was a toddler and remains there today. Bill attended Westchester Day School, as did his mother, of Blessed memory, through eighth grade. His parents were involved in the Day School among numerous other Jewish institutions, and Bill credits them for his philanthropy. Bill attended Ramaz High School. He graduated Brandeis University with a BA in Psychology, followed by an MS in Accounting and an MBA, both from NYU. Bill began working as an Equities Analyst beginning in 1993 specializing in the Broadcasting/Media industries and earned his CFA in 1996. In the last fifteen years, he has worked at Lehman Brothers/Barclays serving as a Senior Analyst in Broadcasting/Media, Deputy Director of Research, Global COO of Equity Research as Managing Director. Bill has also served on the Board of Directors at Congregation Agudath Sholom.

Kori and Bill are proud parents to two Bi-Cultural graduates, Devorah and Sam, as well as current 7th grader, Ben. Devorah is a graduate of SAR High School in Riverdale, NY and is currently attending Midsreshet AMIT seminary in Jerusalem. She will be attending Brandeis University in the fall. Sam is currently a junior at SAR. Both Devorah and Sam have taken on chesed roles in high school, which makes their parents very proud. They are confident that Ben will similarly contribute to his community as he grows older.

Kori and Bill support the strong education that their children have received at BCDS. They firmly believe that all Jewish children should have the opportunity to receive this education and are ardent supporters of the school’s scholarship fund. They are grateful to all that BCDS has given them and their family.

Amiram Soifer
ALUMNI AWARD

Bi-Cultural Day School is honored to recognize Amiram Soifer as the 2016 Alumnus of the Year. Ami’s connection with Bi-Cultural started early on with his father, Ben Soifer, who taught at the school for 48 years. Ami came to BCDS in 4th grade when his family emigrated from Israel. His grade was the first graduating class at the current school campus on High Ridge Road. After he graduated from BCDS in 1983, he attended Westchester Hebrew High School, and then studied electrical engineering at Boston University.

After college, he worked for GE Capital for 2 years, and has been self-employed ever since. He is currently the co-founder and CEO of The TNS Group, a premier IT firm based in the New York Metro area. The company provides managed IT support services worldwide. Ami is considered by many to be one of the world’s foremost secure application delivery experts and has engineered many designs and implementations, locally, nationally and globally.

Ami has spent much of his time ensuring the school’s advancement through his technical know-how. He joined the BCDS Board in 2010 and now chairs the Technology Committee that oversees the computers, servers, communications and systems that BCDS uses.

Ami has a strong commitment to the community, supporting local organizations through his philanthropic endeavors. He served as a member of the Westchester/Fairfield Young Entrepreneurs Organization (YEO) and Greenwich Business Council for over five years. He currently serves as a mentor and resource for a number of business leaders in Fairfield County. He has worked with the local Stamford public schools, focusing on kids in need. In addition, he has helped local underprivileged kids to learn about technology by hosting them at his office. He regularly teaches individuals and companies about technology security, and is invited to talk at local events. This year, Ami is volunteering at the Stamford Maccabi games in August as a member of the transportation committee.

Ami resides in Stamford and is married to his high school sweetheart, Louise. They have three children - Daniel, Hannah, and Jordan, all of whom attended BCDS.

Robyn Winarsky
YOUNG LEADERSHIP AWARD

Robyn Winarsky came to Stamford in August 2012 and immediately immersed herself in the community of Bi-Cultural Day School. Robyn moved from Hong Kong, China where she successfully ran auctions for her children’s Jewish Day School. As an active parent volunteer at BCDS, Robyn has served as Room Parent, Race for Education Committee member, Celebration Dinner Committee member, Auction Co-Chair (two years), Auction Director, Director of the 2015 Celebration Dinner, and Vice President of Fundraising.

Robyn emphasizes the importance of parent volunteers as a critical ingredient for the continued success of BCDS. She believes that parent engagement is a rewarding and insightful way to be involved in your child’s education and the community at large. Robyn considers herself fortunate to be able to dedicate as much time as she has to BCDS.

Robyn and her family are grateful for the warm welcome they received in their relatively short time at BCDS. The school has not only provided an exemplary education for their children, but it has also offered wonderful friendships and a powerful sense of community.

In addition to volunteering at BCDS, Robyn is also actively involved in the wider Stamford community. She is a member of the Stamford JCC Center Women and currently sits on their Executive Board as a Vice President of Fundraising and was the Senior Lunch Program Coordinator. She is also working as a member of the 2016 Stamford Maccabi Games Committee as the Post-Event Engagement Chair.

A Brooklyn native, Robyn currently lives in Stamford with her husband, Mark, and their children Madeline (BCDS Grade 3) and Benjamin (BCDS Grade 1). She received a BS in Finance and Marketing from Binghamton University, and worked in retail as a merchandise planner and buyer. These days Robyn can be found on the BCDS pick up line, inside the Auction room or PA office, shuttling her children to after school activities, or on the tennis court with her friends.

Sally Olson
JANE SHOZTIC TEACHER’S AWARD

Sally Olson has been a valued teacher at Bi-Cultural Day School for 13 years. During that time, she has taught first, fourth and fifth grades, as well as second, sixth and eighth grade math. Sally states that she loves teaching at BCDS because “it is the one place that lets me incorporate so much creativity in the lessons.” She says, “The school is open to trying new ideas and changing programs and technology as the world changes. In addition, because it is a religious school, there are underlying values that are developed and respected.” Sally believes that BCDS is a true family where everyone enjoys working and being together.

Beyond teaching in the classroom, Sally’s involvement with BCDS has included adapting costumes for the school play, sewing curtains for the nurse’s office and building furniture for her classroom. She has also worked with the school buses for more than 10 years, ensuring that all of the children get on the correct buses in the most efficient way possible and helping those children who may be confused about their transportation home.

This year, Sally is using her creative talents in the production of the 2016 Yearbook. She is working with eighth graders to create a cover, back page, and overall theme for the book and will help them to finalize their own personal pages. In addition, she’ll place the individual portraits by grade and will add candid photos to showcase the 2015-2016 school year at BCDS.

Sally’s biggest involvement outside of BCDS is the Lutheran World Relief Quilt Mission. She makes between 80 and 100 quilts a year, which are sent all over the world to places like the Philippines, Berkina Faso and Haiti. She has also coached Little League for Stamford American Little League and basketball for Stamford Youngtimers. In addition, she managed two different softball teams that went to national tournaments in California and Michigan. Now she says she just enjoys watching.

Sally has lived in Stamford for all of her life. In fact, her ancestors came to Stamford in 1645! She is married to Gary, who works for Strauss Paper Company, and has three children. Kristen who is married to Mark Longfield, is President of Consumer Insights of Fanthropology in Los Angeles, and has an amazing two and a half year old who adores his Nana. Katharine is Director of Strategy at Homebrew in Burbank, California. Her son, Andrew, is finishing a degree in Virtual Marketing at the University of Connecticut.