Successful Iron Dome program wraps up JCC’s Celebrate Israel series

by | Jun 2, 2014 | Other News

David Brand and CBN COO Michael Little.

David Brand and CBN COO Michael Little.

A presentation describing the engineering mechanics behind the Iron Dome anti-missile system used by Israel to protect its citizens could have been overly complicated or less than entertaining.

In a program about the subject, held at Regent University Theatre on Sunday, May 18, learning about the Iron Dome was anything but confusing or dull. In the skilled hands of Lt. Col. Gideon Weiss, a veteran of the Israel Defense Forces and a vice-president of Rafael, USA, the company that makes the Iron Dome, an audience of more than 450 benefitted from a diversely emotional and well-designed multimedia production.

“I expected the program to be informative, but it was so much more than that, because Gideon told us about the Iron Dome through his humor and his own story—he made it personal,” says Melissa Eichelbaum, a college student who attended the event.

“I learned some fascinating things about the Iron Dome—that the engineers examined how everyday toys worked to use as a model for parts of the system, and how they found out that the $400 hinges they originally were using were the same as those you could get for much, much cheaper. I also learned how the money that America is investing in this system comes back to the United States, benefitting us as well as Israel.”

Gideon Weiss’ visit and presentation was the final event in the Simon Family JCC’s Celebrate Israel Series, presented by Charles Barker Automotive, and was organized in partnership with the Community Relations Council of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.

In addition to Weiss’ appearance, the audience—comprised of a cross-section of the Jewish and Christian communities— was also treated to a brief screening of the Christian Broadcasting Network’s Made in Israel series.

Gordon Robertson, CEO of CBN global and producer of the five-part series, introduced the segment about technology, and reiterated his commitment to promoting and supporting Israel. The series has been nominated for several Daytime Emmy Awards, which will be announced later this month. Audience members received a DVD of Made in Israel, complements of Robertson.

Bob Lehman was so impressed with the evening’s program that he immediately sent an email to CRC director Robin Mancoll, in which he wrote:

“Yasher Koach on such an outstanding program…I loved that Regent did not merely host the program, but endorsed, without reservation, a bilateral faith-based alliance with the Jewish community with respect to Israel. It was heartwarming. Everyone left proud of Israel, and the fact that Gideon is so involved in this project.”

Greetings and introductions at the event were made by Terri Sarfan, outgoing JCC president, and David Brand, a former UJFT president. Gordon Robertson hosted a private reception before the program, which was attended by more than 125 people. Many audience members stayed after the presentation to discuss what they had heard and learned, and to enjoy a kosher dessert reception sponsored by the CRC.

by Laine Mednick Rutherford