Sue and Bud Selig 

Honored at the J Gala

Photos Courtesy of The Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center

Above: left to right; Bud Selig, Susan and Bill Levine, Sue Selig, Amy and Andrew Cohn.

On December 8, over 800 guests gathered to support the Valley of the Sun Jewish Community Center (a.k.a. “The J”). Held at the Arizona Biltmore Resort, the Gala honored Sue and Bud Selig for their community support with the William S. Levine Family Community Excellence Award.

Bud Selig currently serves as the Commissioner Emeritus of Major League Baseball. In 2016, he was honored with the Lombardi Award of Excellence and, the following year was inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Selig is on the faculty at Arizona State University’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law, serving as a Professor of Practice and Lecturers.

Above, left: Bud Selig and Bob Uecker. Above, right: Susan and Bill Levine with Jay Leno.

The Seligs have shown a strong commitment to their adoptive home in Arizona. Major supporters of Phoenix Art Museum, Sue serves on the board of trustees. The couple’s generous gift of $2.5 million to the Museum in 2015 funded a chief curator position, an office long held vacant. 

Bill and Susan Levine were Honorary Chairs of the fundraiser. Despite keeping a low profile, Bill Levine has been staunch supporter in the Phoenix community. His leadership and charitable contributions helped establish the Ina Levine Jewish Community Campus, named in honor of his late wife.

Former baseball player, sportscaster and actor Bob Uecker, was the emcee. Keeping the party going, legendary late-night TV host, comedian and actor Jay Leno entertained the guests. Jerry Simms was the title sponsor. 

Above left: Sue and Bud Selig. Above right: Sara Schneider and Rachel Hoffer.

Sara Schneider received The Maya Schulder Rising Star Award. Schneider, now a JCC board member, has followed her father’s footsteps. Her dad, Marty Pear, the Executive Director of the former JCC in Phoenix, instilled the importance of a  community JCC to his daughter.

Jay Jacobs, CEO of The J says they have yet to finalize the total dollars raised, but is confident that it was a record-breaking evening. The auction, combined with the paddle ask, raised $200,000. “We absolutely exceeded  expectations and we believe it was the most successful in The J’s history,” says Jacobs. “What people did that evening and how people support us all year long is what allows us to meet the ever-changing needs of the community.”

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