Meet the Presidents: Marcia Samuels, president, Jewish Family Service

by | Oct 11, 2013 | Other News

Marcia Samuels

Marcia Samuels

I am a licensed clinical psychologist in a private practice in Norfolk.

Undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia; master’s and doctorate degrees from Florida Institute of Technology.

Married to David Kamer Two children, Olivia and Leo.

Jewish organizations
Jewish Family Service of Tidewater, board member for 13 years Hebrew Academy of Tidewater, alumni and parent Congregation Beth El, past board member Jewish Community Center, member and served on Book Festival committee UJFT Women’s Cabinet member Jewish Women International, lifetime member

Favorite Jewish holiday
I love Sukkot, as it is a beautiful time of year and a great holiday to socialize with friends and family.

Most memorable personal Jewish milestone
I have had so many wonderful Jewish experiences that it is hard to choose a most memorable one. My daughter’s bat mitzvah in 2012 was very meaningful, perhaps more so than my own bat mitzvah. It was gratifying to see my daughter affirm her commitment to Judaism and to share the experience with family and dear friends. I took the opportunity to reaffirm my commitment to Judaism by reading from the Torah as well. I look forward to my son’s bar mitzvah in a few years.

Ties to the Tidewater Jewish community
I was born and raised in Tidewater, a fourth generation Norfolkian. My parents, Linda and Stanley Samuels, are not only great parents, but they also taught me and my sisters the importance of leadership in the community in which we live. Hampton Roads is a great place to live and be a Jewish leader.

Most admired Jewish leader
Golda Meir. I respect the hard choices she had to make and her inner strength.

What other positions have you held with Jewish Family Service?
I have held various positions including member-at-large, secretary and vice president.

Why have you chosen to devote so much time to the JFS?
The organization is focused on helping others, which is pretty much my life philosophy. In addition, the agency leadership and staff are so dedicated, compassionate, and professional. It is a joy to be affiliated with such a committed agency.

What are your goals as president?
My goals include increasing fundraising to the agency since the General Assembly has cut some of our funding sources, focusing on board development, and increasing the community’s knowledge of all of the services that JFS provides.