David Zalik Named Top Entrepreneur

GreenSky CEO David Zalik was named the EY U.S. entrepreneur of the year in financial services at a gala awards ceremony Saturday night, Nov. 19, in Palm Springs, Calif.

Zalik, a Sandy Springs resident and Epstein School parent, is a serial entrepreneur. He sold computers to fellow students at Auburn University, then sold that business, MicroTech, in 1996. He launched Outweb, a consulting firm for business process automation, in 1999.

He started GreenSky, which provides business-to-business online payment solutions, in 2006.

GreenSky’s technology analyzes data gathered from Social Security and credit bureaus to make real-time credit decisions for small businesses. Approved customers can access the funds in less than 10 seconds.

With a focus on small businesses, GreenSky since 2012 has increased revenue by 400 percent and grown its workforce from 50 to an expected 800 by the end of 2016.

Having been named the Southeast entrepreneur of the year in June, Zalik beat out fellow finalists Renovate America of San Diego, Q2 Software of Austin, Texas, and Argo Group of San Antonio.

Jewish Spiritual Symphony

The Atlanta Symphony Orchestra on Friday, Nov. 18, released its eighth recording on its ASO Media label, “Jonathan Leshnoff Zohar & Symphony No. 2 ‘Inner Space.’ ”

Distributed by Naxos of America, the recording features the orchestra, chorus, Music Director Robert Spano, Director of Choruses Norman Mackenzie, soprano Jessica Rivera and baritone Nmon Ford.

The piece’s 11 movements draw on Leshnoff’s religious faith and belief about music’s rare ability to transport us to places that would otherwise be impossible to go. The authentic Jewish mystical schools outline in great length the spiritual architecture of the universe and its interaction with G-d and mankind. Leshnoff draws his inspiration within those systems.

These works are part of Leshnoff’s 10-piece multiyear meta-project, which parallels the fundamental building blocks of Jewish spiritual thought.
The digital release is available for download on iTunes, and the physical recording can be ordered at www.aso.org/asomedia or Amazon.com.

Atlanta Women in Israel

Two groups of Atlanta women have recently traveled to Israel.

Fourteen representatives of the Jewish Women’s Fund of Atlanta visited the fund’s Israeli grantees from Nov. 10 to 17. You can relive the trip and what the women learned about the Israeli organizations at jwfatlanta.org/israeltrip.

Overlapping with that philanthropic mission was the Jewish Women’s Renaissance Project Momentum trip of 46 Atlanta-area Jewish mothers from Nov. 13 to 23.

This project is part of our ongoing efforts to strengthen Israel’s relationship with Diaspora communities around the world,” said Dvir Kahana, the director-general of the Ministry of Diaspora Affairs. “We are extremely proud of our strategic partnership with the JWRP. We share the vision of empowering Jewish women worldwide as leaders of the next generation with the ability and drive to raise children who are proud of their identity and strongly connected to Israel.”

Momentum trips, which stretch from the mystical city of Safed to the ancient mountaintop fortress Masada, encompass everything from Jewish values to contemporary Israeli society.

“Our philosophy from the beginning has always been: Inspire a woman, you inspire a family. Inspire enough families, you can change a community. Inspire enough communities, you can change the world,” said Lori Palatnik, the JWRP’s founding director.

JWRP said the following women went on the trip: Terri Abadi, Julie Altmann, Jill Asrael, Melinda Cobb, Felissa Covin, Allison Fellner, Elissa Fladell, Traci Flome, Batsheva Gelbtuch-Moses, Carey Guggenheim, Cynthia Hopkins, Stacy Hyken, Kimberly Kopelman, Debra Kraar, Mia Kurgan Atkins, Mara Lapp, Lisa Lefkovits, Andrea Lipman, Leslie Lipson, Susan Londe, Margo Marks, Mireille Naturman, Elana Satisky, Julie Silverman, Kerry Solomiany, Lisa Toporek, Dana Webber, Stacy Wolff, Allison Beldick, Caren Cohen, Tracey Grant, Julie Zweig, Monica Berger, Danielle Levy, Lily Bock, Marnie Nadolne, Ashli Breen, Shelley Gordon, Simone Levingston, Staci Libowsky, Pam Nowitz, Robyn Regenbaum, Gayle Siegel, Melissa Yashinsky, Lisie Nozick and Bracha Schulgasser.