David Sorkin and Stephen Blumert will receive the JCC Allan Weissglass Distinguished Leadership Award

STATEN ISLAND, NY – On Sunday, May 15, the Joan & Alan Bernikow JCC of Staten Island will present its highest honor, the Allan Weissglass Distinguished Leadership Award, to David Sorkin and Stephen J. Blumert.

The event will begin at 6 p.m. at Bernikow JCC, located at 466 Manor Road. The gala, named after the late Allan Weissglass, honors individuals who have supported the mission of the JCC and served as leaders in the Staten Island community.

This year’s winners have a long history of leadership within the JCC. Sorkin is the JCC’s CEO Emeritus and Blumert is a longtime JCC board member and prominent attorney.

“We are very proud to be able to honor David and Stephen with this prestigious award,” said Orit Lender, CEO of JCC. “Both have been instrumental in the success of the JCC over the past decades.

“David and Steve far exceed the criteria to receive this award for their dedication, leadership and generosity to the JCC and the community at large. They truly exemplify Allan Weissglass’ legacy of service and are well deserving of this award.

Proceeds from the gala will support the JCC’s memory loss programs – Rosemary’s Place and My Place. These programs are essential in helping people with memory loss and their families, as they provide in-person services to those in need. Both program options allow people to participate in programs that best meet their needs outside of their home and provide caregivers with respite to commute to work or other activities.

“My grandfather held David and Steve in such high regard,” noted Allison Cohen, director of marketing and communications for the JCC and granddaughter of Weissglass. “Our family could not think of two more appropriate people to honor in his memory. We hope the community will come together to recognize these two distinguished honorees and this important cause by supporting the event.

To purchase tickets or sponsorships, please visit https://www.sijcc.org/weissglass.html

For her bat mitzvah, Eden Sorkin-Topper, center, reads the Torah accompanied by her grandparents, Arlene and David Sorkin. (Courtesy of Miriam Friend)


After a career spanning more than 45 years in the nonprofit sector, in July 2020, David H. Sorkin entered a new phase in his professional life as a Senior Advisor and Consultant. David is a seasoned executive with over 35 years of human services leadership expertise.

Prior to entering his consulting business, he served for 15 years as CEO of the Jewish Community Center of Staten Island, where he was responsible for the operations and management of one of the largest social service agencies on the island. . In his new role as Senior Advisor and Consultant, David brings competent experience to NFP agencies requiring interim management, fundraising and resource development, executive coaching, crisis management, governance development and leadership and strategic planning.

In addition to being CEO of JCC Staten Island, he has also served as CEO of JCC Metropolitan Detroit and JCC Delaware Wilmington. Additionally, he has held various positions with JCCs in Cherry Hill, NJ, New Orleans, Louisiana, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. David has also worked as a national consultant for the JCC Association of North America.

Early in his career, he served as Director of Combination Therapies at Shriners Hospital for Children in Philadelphia. In 2007, during his tenure as CEO of JCC Staten Island, David opened the JCC’s flagship 120,000 square foot facility along with the development and implementation of state-of-the-art social/human services, recreational, educational and cultural programs and services. Under his leadership, the CCC has significantly expanded its strategic alliances in the government, not-for-profit and commercial sectors to further its mission.

David developed strategic and effective communications to build the CCG’s brand identity, created strong, transparent and accountable financial management, and donor-focused strategic fundraising. His keen sense of planning and evaluation has served to guide the CCC through several periods of crisis while supporting the organizational capacity to meet challenges and achieve results.

David received his Associates in Recreation and Parks from Pennsylvania State University and his Bachelor of Science in Health, Physical Education, and Recreation and a Masters of Education from Temple University in Philadelphia. He was an adjunct professor, teaching business leadership, at the School of Business at the College of Staten Island, CUNY. David is a director of the Staten Island Not-for-Profit Association, where he served as chairman of the board and president of the Community Organizations Active in Disaster Coalition.

Additionally, Sorkin is a board member of Hebrew Public, a charter school in New York City, and a former board member of the Staten Island Long Term Recovery Organization and the Association of Jewish Community Professionals. He also serves on numerous committees and boards, including the Staten Island Chamber of Commerce, Staten Island Economic Development Corporation, Staten Island Tackling Youth Substance Abuse Steering Committee, and Staten Island Borough Presidents Health and Wellness Advisory Council.

David was also appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as co-chair of the NYS Rising Steering Committee and by Mayor Bill de Blasio on the Climate Advisory Committee. David has been honored by various organizations for his service to the community including; The Staten Island Chamber of Commerce, Louis R. Miller Business Leadership Award; Wagner College, Chai Society Humanitarian Award; Staten Island Jewish Community Center, Star of David Award; Staten Island Sports Hall of Fame, Unsung Heroes Award; United Activities Unlimited, Edward G. Kepley, Jr. Unsung Hero Award; and the Staten Island Council of the Boy Scouts of America, Distinguished Service to Youth Award.

David lives in Staten Island with his wife Arlene. Their daughter, Kristi Sorkin, son-in-law Randy Topper, and children Eden and Shana also reside on Staten Island.


In this June 20, 2006 photo, the Staten Island Jewish Community Center hosted a ‘Hard Hat’ cocktail party at the construction site of the new Aberlin/North Shore center building, the Joan and Alan Bernikow JCC. Present were, from left to right, Louis Stolzenberg, Executive Director of the JCC; Allan Weissglass; R. Randy Lee and Stephen J. Blumert, JCC President. (advanced file photo)


Stephen J. Blumert has spent his life affiliated with the JCC movement. Beginning as a day camper from the Bronx frequenting Henry Kaufmann Campgrounds, he rose through the ranks to become Chairman of the Board of Directors of our Staten Island JCC and a member of the UJA/New York Conference Boards of Directors. and Henry Kaufmann Campgrounds.

He and his wife Judy moved to Staten Island to raise their two children, Matthew and Jessica, both now married and having children of their own. The five grandchildren, Jace, Eloise, Hayden, Blair and Austin are unique and a source of great joy.

When he’s not volunteering for the JCC or enjoying his family, Steve works as an associate at the Manhattan law firm Beldock Levine & Hoffman LLP, where he practices in the areas of real estate, trusts and estates. He graduated from Bronx High School of Science, Syracuse University (AB 1976), Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law (JD, 1979), and New York University School of Law (LL.M Taxation , 1985). He is admitted to the bar in New York and New Jersey.

Both a transactional real estate attorney and a trusts and estates practitioner, Steve brings to his firm the knowledge gained over his years of experience. He has worked on a wide range of business matters such as condominium deals, shopping center acquisitions, commercial leases, and business formation and operation. Yet he is also able to work on the very personal family issues that arise when planning an estate, preparing wills and assisting with the administration of an estate.

Stephen is grateful to have had the opportunity to volunteer with the JCC. He views the long hours of CCC business as a labor of love and is proud of his reputation as chair of good meetings. He is an avid photographer and an avid golfer.

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