Given the interesting times of the coronavirus pandemic, even mundane activities such as installations have taken on more grand stature than they might have enjoyed under less stressful times.
The Greater New Orleans Chapter of Hadassah held its annual installation on Tuesday, May 26, and because it was held over Zoom, Marla Kameny, the Souther region president was on hand to conduct the installation remotely.
At the special installation, Briann Fisher Shear was installed as president for the first of what are expected to be two years of her term of office.
“We had coast-to-coast attendance, including my sister in Baltimore and my daughter and granddaughter in San Diego — all life members of Hadassah,” Shear said after the affair.
Outgoing co-presidents, Betty Moore and Helen Stone, were on hand to hear thanks from Shear for all of their hard work over the course of the previous two years. Shear also gave kudos to the board members who had also served the past two years.
With an acknowledgement to the Zoom experience, Shear spoke about the need to embrace the new and to learn what can be gleaned during this challenging time.
“It’s different, not better or worse, but we can embrace what we can learn and what we can do,” Shear said. “We will explore the possibilities and use our ingenuity and creativity, and find the excitement in trying new things. And when we can return to some of the old familiar ways of doing things, we may still hang onto some of the new things we have learned.”
“With the support of an outstanding board and the guidance of our past presidents and mentors, I am looking forward to a fun and productive year with old and new friends, with programs to inspire and educate that appeal to women of different ages and interests,” Shear added. “Underlying all we do, (is) a dedication to Hadassah’s core values, using education, advocacy and support of medical care and research at (the) Hadassah Medical organization to be a bridge to peace in Israel and around the world.”
A life member of Hadassah for more than four decades, Shear was honored last year with the Woman of the Year award from the chapter.
Also named to the Hadassah board are Cindy Denn and Evette Ungar, education co-vice-presidents; Suzanne Stone, program vice-president; Marcela Boskis de Totah and Charisse Sands, fundraising co-vice-presidents; Fran Simon, marketing/communications vice-president; Teri Gross and Ilana Reisin, membership vice-presidents; Vickie Dahlman-Anger, advocacy vice-president; Michelle Allen-Hart, recording secretary; Angela Gordon, corresponding secretary; and Arlene Hines, treasurer.
The daughter of Jack and Dotsy Fisher, Shear and her three siblings worked in the family’s shoe store while growing up in New Orleans. After receiving a degree in philosophy from the University of New Orleans, she held jobs in art education, real estate, and graphic design.
Shear’s company, Shear Grafix has long been involved with many organizations, including Hadassah and the Greater New Orleans Section of the National Council of Jewish Women. She is also a member of Rotary International.
Married to Mel Shear for 50 years, the couple live in Metairie couple. They have two adult children, Marci and Seth.