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Wisdom in Winter

Monday, February 20, 2023 29 Shevat 5783

7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Past Sessions
Monday, February 6, 2023 15 Shevat 5783 - 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Monday, January 30, 2023 8 Shevat 5783 - 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Monday, January 23, 2023 1 Shevat 5783 - 7:30 PM - 9:00 PM










with Robert J. Fishman, MSW|Executive Director, Michelle Walker, MSW|Director of Programs of Connecticut Immigrant & Refugee Coalition (CIRC), and recent Refugees who will share their stories.
Lecture begins INPERSON at 7:45pm after Minyan
Jan 23: "Look for the Helpers": The Jewish Community Response to Refugees
Jan 30: "Refugees in CT" - The Ukrainian Story - A First Hand Report
Feb 6: "Refugees in CT" - The Afghan Story - A First Hand Report

Robert Fishman, MSW  |  Executive Director
Bob Fishman served for 23 years as Executive Director of the Jewish Federations Association of Connecticut (JFACT), and during that time he also served for many years as Board President of the Connecticut Immigrant and Refugee Coalition. 
Fishman left JFACT in 2017 to become Executive Director of CIRC; this marked the first time the previously all-volunteer organization welcomed professional staff, reflecting the increasingly acute need to respond to Connecticut’s refugee and immigrant population.

Fishman has also worked with interfaith groups on behalf of children and the elderly and has served with the Connecticut General Assembly on the Neighborhood Association Act (NAA), a tax-credit program, and a range of issues, including Connecticut’s DREAMERS legislation. He has also collaborated with the state Department of Economic and Community Development, and various agencies and elected officials at the state and federal levels, advocating successfully for legislation, grants, and support for initiatives that promote opportunity in Connecticut.

Michelle Walker, MSW  |  Director of Programs
Michelle Walker joined the Connecticut Immigrant and Refugee Coalition (CIRC) in July 2021 as Director of Programs. Michelle first became passionate about the rights of immigrants when working at the Torture Abolition and Survivor Support Coalition (TASSC) with asylum seekers. As a result, Michelle has devoted her professional career to advancing the rights of immigrants and refugees. Before coming to CIRC, Michelle worked as a Program Officer at the US Committee for Immigrants and Refugees in their Trafficking Victim Assistance Program (TVAP) where she oversaw social service providers in the Pacific Northwest and Midwest regions. Michelle also worked at Human Rights First in their Refugee Protection program, advocating on Capitol Hill for the rights of refugees and asylum seekers.

Michelle has a master’s degree in Social Work from Columbia University, with a concentration in Policy Practice and International Social Work with Immigrants and Refugees. She also holds dual bachelor’s degrees in Social Work and Psychology from The Catholic University of America, with the additional honor of serving as class Valedictorian at the National Catholic School of Social Service.


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Tue, February 7 2023 16 Shevat 5783