Publisher's Note September 2018

Max & Joanne Friedland

Guess what’s more American than apple pie? Volunteerism. A quick Google search will confirm this; it appears that we Americans spend our human capital in a variety of different ways, most significantly for the betterment of others. Who knew that we were such a generous people, a fact generally ignored by a sensation driven, 24-hour news cycle.

Last year, DAVID decided to address this shortcoming by launching our Vegas Volunteers initiative. The idea was simple; give philanthropy a human face by inviting Southern Nevada non-profits to celebrate the contribution of one of their star volunteers. This project has grown significantly from its humble beginnings. We grossly underestimated the response we would get this year and quickly ran out of space in the section! For those individuals we were able to present, congratulations, your efforts serve as an inspiration to us all. You have certainly got this publisher itching to get involved.

DAVID sent Jaq Greenspon to find out what is going on in Jewish Las Vegas philanthropy and community programming. In Same Faces, New Chairs, pages 22-25, he discovers a community in transition, consolidating its operations under the rebranded banner Jewish Nevada. We at DAVID wish them well, as members of the said community, we have a vested interest in their success.

When the curtain goes down and costumes and makeup are removed (well…as for the costumes, that may not be entirely necessary), the performers of the sexy stage show FANTASY return to their normal lives. Lynn Wexler writes about these women in Golden-Hearted Showgirls, pages 26-29, telling us of their dedication to acts of kindness and generosity. Proceeds from the sale of their sizzling annual calendar always goes to charity. This year, in honor of the late journalist Robin Leach, the recipient will be the Cleveland Clinic Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. Go ahead and buy a dozen; having seen some of the artwork, I guarantee they’ll make great holiday gifts.

In Aleza Freeman’s essay Athletes Pursuing Philanthropy, pages 52-56, we are introduced to the world of athlete-driven generosity. One can be forgiven for believing that LeBron James’ iPromise Public School endowment in Akron, Ohio was an isolated incident of this phenomenon. Nothing can be further from the truth; the culture of professional sports teams and players is deeply rooted in the principle of philanthropy. To celebrate this, we shine our spotlight on some local teams and athletes, and it is good to know that a small part of the price of admission to an arena or stadium goes to a good cause. The addition of major league sports to the Las Vegas valley bodes well for Southern Nevada and its plethora of noble causes.

We continue our focus on volunteerism by grilling United Way CEO Scott Emerson. The United Way of Southern Nevada’s Day of Caring is scheduled for October 5. He estimates that over 2,000 volunteers will come together in the spirit of tikkun olam (Hebrew for repairing the world). He challenges us to get up off the couch for one day of giving back, with the acknowledgement that as much good as it may do for others, it is also a mighty tonic for our souls.

Intrepid film critic and writer Josh Bell had the great pleasure of interviewing Todd Fisher, son of the late Debbie Reynolds and brother of the late Carrie Fisher. In his piece My Life with Debbie and Carrie, pages 42-45, he asks Fisher about the motivation behind his new memoir, My Girls.

Marisa Finetti takes us to Tuscany, Italy. In her latest travelogue For Love of Land, pages 46-51, she visits Il Borro, the fabulous Relais & Chateaux estate of Salvatore Ferragamo, the grandson of the luxury Italian designer.

Our cover this month features famous chef and TV personality Gordon Ramsay. Jason Harris reviews his recently opened Hell’s Kitchen (yes, of TV show fame). In The Devil’s in the Details, pages 30-33, he extols the virtues of chef Ramsay’s Beef Wellington as well as of Chef Jennifer Murphy, the person responsible for running the property’s day-to-day operations.

With that mouthwatering tease I bid you all adieu. Enjoy the change of season and see you in the racks.

Max D. Friedland

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