Bob St. Lifer, Financial Secretary
Bob St Lifer was born and raised in Hillside NJ. His family was very active in their synagogue, but all the Jewish families in Hillside and Elizabeth worked together regardless of the temple or synagogue they were affiliated with. As a child Bob remembered that people would gather at people’s homes a few times a year to do community fundraisers. Everyone would call out what they could give. Wealthy people could give much more then others, but every time someone made a pledge, it was greeted with thanks and enthusiasm. Every one’s pledge was honored and appreciated, no matter how great or small. People used to bid to get a High Holy Day Aliyah, but whomever would win would say, “but please tell the Rabbi to give my aliyah to the person who deserves the honor, my bid serves as a donation.”
As soon as they moved to Colts Neck they joined MRT and the Jewish Federation. He believes it is important to support the Jewish community.
All of Bob’s friends were going to Rutgers and American University, but he wanted to do something different. He was advised to go to University of Pittsburgh. It was a great choice because it was there that he met Susan. After college Bob went onto Law School at Pepperdine in Malibu, California. He passed the NJ bar but chose to join his father in the men’s clothing business. Bob worked at the store which moved to Toms River at the Ocean County Mall. Susan and Bob moved to Colts Neck to be closer to the store, but not so far from family. Susan works as a special ed teacher in Eatontown. They had Lily and then the twins, Sam and Emily. Lily is a Pre school teacher in New Brunswick, Sam is married to Annie and they live in San Diego; he is finishing up his MA and works for a military contractor. Emily works in LA at a synagogue called Temple Beth Am and she loves it there.
When they moved to Colts Neck, MRT became a very important part of their lives, all their children went to religious school, became B’nai Mitzvah, and went through Confirmation. Both Bob and Susan remain active in the synagogue. They attend Friday night services regularly. Bob attends Saturday AM study every week and goes all over to take Jewish studies courses at Rutgers and other synagogues in our vicinity. Bob also belongs to Freehold Jewish Center and attends the morning minyan every day since he retired.
Bob has been part of two Rabbinic search committees at MRT and financial secretary for the past 6 years. For fun he plays tennis and golf and cards a few times a week. Bob has a sister Lois and her daughter is our Religious School Principal-Stephanie Fields. Bob’s first cousin Bill and his wife Joanne also belong to MRT. As if all that isn’t enough Bob also volunteers for kosher meals on wheels and at Federation where he has held every Board position.
Quite simply, Bob loves MRT and says it is like his family. We are all connected and need one another, for Bob and Susan, it is all about “community”.
By Cantor Gabrielle Clissold