Annual Campus Gala on Nov. 10 Will Honor Rob & Andrea Minster and Alan & Janice Woll
Campus Gala Honorees Rob and Andrea Minster
This year's Campus Gala honorees are Rob and Andrea Minster, recognized for their longstanding devotion to the Akron Jewish community. Since birth, both have been actively involved in the community. In fact, the couple met as JCC sports camp counselors in 1977.
Rob graduated with a Master’s in Taxation from University of Akron where began his career as a CPA. Later, he joined his family as the fourth generation to work at Belenky, Inc. where he still works today. Andrea was granted one of the first athletic scholarships under Title IX to play tennis at Kent State University where she graduated with a B.S. in health and physical education. She and her mother started a window treatment company, Pretty Panes, in 1985 that she still owns and operates. Andrea was also a tennis coach for Copley High School for 18 years.
Rob has served on various boards from JCBA, JCC, JFS and Beth El to West Akron Baseball League and Akron Blind Center. He is a past president of JCBA and JFS and is the current president of Hillel at Kent State, where he has been a board member since 2006 and was one of the campaign chairs to raise funds to build the Cohn Jewish Student Center. Andrea has served as the co-president for Women’s American ORT, was a member of the first ORT National Young Leadership Group, served on the JCC Women’s Auxiliary, Na’Amat, Beth El Sisterhood, JCBA Women’s Board, JCC Board, and various community committees such as Super Sunday where both she and Rob served as committee chairs.
Rob and Andrea have each received the Young Leadership Award from Federation. Rob was honored by Hillel at Kent State in 2014 and is a frequent blood donor to the American Red Cross, with over 100 donations. Andrea was inducted into the Akron Jewish Sports Hall of Fame as well as the Copley Sports Hall of Fame. With all of their accomplishments, their most meaningful one has been watching their family grow to become successful, happy and equally philanthropic adults.
Both Rob and Andrea have been raised to understand the importance and responsibility of community service from their families. Stan Minster is a past president of the JCC and was the chair of the Lippman Day School expansion. MaryAnn has been involved in Na’Amat and the Center Auxiliary for decades. Their contribution has been, and continues to be, an inspiration to everyone in the Minster family. Rob and Andrea are motivated by their children, Stacey, Kevin and Emily, their spouses Devin, Lori and Mike and their grandson Benjamin to continue to provide a Jewish future full of family, tradition and a sense of community.
"The community has done far more for us and my family than we have done for the community,” Rob and Andrea say in response to their recognition. “The Jewish institutions in Akron are vital to the health and survival of a Jewish Akron. They allow community members to connect to their Jewish beliefs and traditions in whatever manner each person wishes to connect. We have been inspired by the contributions of our family, friends and community leaders. We are thankful for the opportunities we have had to benefit as participants and to give back in some small ways.”
Tikkun Olam Award Honoress Alan and Janice Woll
Alan and Janice Woll will receive the Tikkun Olam award at the Campus Gala this year. Committed to giving back, the Wolls are role models in the Jewish community for both philanthropy and personal commitment to making Akron, and the world, a better place to live.
“The community has been good to us,” say the Wolls. “We, along with our children and their children, grew up here, and we are still very much a part of the Jewish community that has nurtured us throughout the years. We want to continue ensuring and supporting a strong Jewish future in Akron.”
Alan and Janice started dating in tenth grade at Buchtel High School and married in 1968. Their children are Rachel and Scott Arnopolin, Jerrod and Andrea Woll, and Michael Woll and Gregory Orenstein. They have been blessed with four grandchildren – Raleigh and Cori Arnopolin and Jovie and Bodhi Woll.
In high school, Alan earned several letters in football and track and field and broke the Litchfield Middle School record by running the 100-yard dash in 10.3 seconds. He attended the University of Akron where he played football on a full athletic scholarship. In 2017, Alan was inducted into the Akron Jewish Sports Hall of Fame for his achievements.
Alan began his career as a salesman for Akron plastics maker E. Helman Company. In 1986, he co-founded Network Polymers and later started Diamond Polymers. In 2013, he sold the business to A. Schulman and started the Alan J. Woll Family Fund of the Akron Community Foundation, so he and his family could give back to the community they love.
Janice is a retired art teacher, having worked for several years in the Akron Public School District and later at St. Hillary’s. Before she went back to teaching, she worked several years as an education consultant for Carson-Dellosa Publishing and owned her own giftware company that specialized in personalized gifts. The arts were her passion, so she returned to school to get her art degree so she could teach art.
Over the years, Alan and Janice have been involved in numerous Jewish and community causes.
Both are long-time members of Beth El Congregation. For many years, Janice was an avid Friday minyan-goer and known for going to yoga class following breakfast with her friends. She was a volunteer with the Knitzvah project and a member of the Beth El Sisterhood, which is part of the Women’s League of Conservative Judaism. Alan served on Beth El’s Endowment Committee. For several years, the Wolls funded the luncheon for the Synaplex program.
Janice was also active in Daughters of Israel with her mother, Bess Rothkin, and her sister, Linda Lyons.
Janice worked with Bonnie Cohen, Kathy Salem, Karen Halpern and Esther Hexter to create the mosaic tile project found on the walls of the Shaw JCC lobby. The project raised $30,000 for arts programming in the community.
When she wasn’t biking, hiking, knitting or quilting, Janice volunteered her time with Blessings in Backpack to ensure that impoverished elementary school children were fed on weekends throughout the school year.
In 2007, Janice chaired the gala opening event at the Akron Art Museum, where Janice also served as a docent.
Alan served as president of Rosemont Country Club and chaired its golf tournament in addition to supporting charitable causes such as the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, CJD, the Akron-Canton Regional Food Bank, University Hospital, The University of Akron and the Northeast Ohio Medical University.
The impact of their philanthropy can be seen and felt throughout the Schultz Campus for Jewish Life. In 2015, they helped make the Shaw JCC indoor pool renovation a reality. And in 2017, they helped to transform The Lippman School’s library into a new innovation center filled with cutting-edge technologies for students and the community alike. The library was renamed the Woll Family Center for Innovation in their honor. The Tikkun Olam Award honors all the Woll’s accomplishments in the community.