OPI Co-Founder Suzi Weiss-Fischmann Explores The Intersection Of Entrepreneurship And Faith At Lions Of Judah Virtual Event
More Than 200 Attendees Celebrate The Impact Of Jewish Women’s Philanthropy At The Local, National And International Levels
Boca Raton, FL – When Suzi Weiss-Fischmann launched OPI in 1981, she admits that she knew about dentures, not nail lacquer. But working with a young chemist, the daughter of Holocaust survivors quickly discovered the common ground of creating fake teeth and acrylic nails, which enabled her to transform nail product sales into an international brand.
Weiss-Fischmann recalled how the traditions of her faith supported her entrepreneurial spirit in the early days of OPI, as the guest speaker for The Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County’s Lions of Judah annual event. On January 11, 2021, more than 200 attendees listened in on a conversation between the brand co-founder/author/philanthropist and Alison Lebovitz, former JFNA National Young Leadership co-chair and host of the “Sis and Tell” podcast.
For the first time, the celebration of women’s philanthropy was held via Zoom. The program, co-chaired by Joanne Applebaum and Joan Winograd, also featured an acapella performance by singer Mayta Cohen and a tribute to Lions who have recently passed away, including Leona Brauser, who was remembered by her son, Michael Brauser.
“My parents were very wise people, who lived through difficult times,” he said. “My mother knew that the meaning of life was to help future generations. Her contribution to the Lions of Judah made her very proud.”
Part of a worldwide sisterhood of 18,000 women, each Lion of Judah contributes a minimum of $5,000 each year to their local Federation. With nearly 700 Lions, the South Palm Beach County pride is one of the largest in the country. In addition, now with 328 Lion of Judah Endowments (LOJEs), South Palm Beach County continues to lead the nation with the largest number of LOJEs.
As the event’s keynote speaker, Weiss-Fischmann credited her parents’ resilience, their adherence to Jewish traditions and her desire to guide her destiny with helping her attain success. She also emphasized discipline, industriousness and an ability to be bold in being a leader. If she were to launch OPI today, which is known for its clever lacquer names and marketing creativity, she said she would be labeled a “disruptor.” Now a global icon, Weiss-Fischmann encourages the next generation of Jewish female business leaders, philanthropists and dreamers to think big, but lean on the foundational teachings of their heritage.
“If you’re passionate and disciplined, which I was, you develop the resilience to achieve something. Every day, I remember where I came from, and it gave me the drive to get where I am. That’s how I live my life,” she said.
Special thanks was given to Women’s Philanthropy Board Chair Karen Dern and Women’s Philanthropy Vice Chair of Campaign Elyssa Kupferberg, and special recognition was given to guests from Hillel of Broward and Palm Beach.
The Annual Lion of Judah Event was generously sponsored by Boca Raton Regional Hospital Foundation/Baptist Health. Ivan & Co. Jewelers was the In-Kind sponsor and The Boca Raton Observer was Exclusive Magazine Sponsor.
For more information about the Federation’s Lion of Judah program and other women’s activities and opportunities, visit jewishboca.org/womens or contact Janice Obuchowski at 561.852.3271 or email@example.com.
About the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County
Established in 1979, the JFSPBC is made up of Jewish and social service organizations, synagogues and schools that provide valued services and programs to recipients in South Palm Beach County, in Israel and around the world. The JFSPBC is also comprised of local residents, including lay leadership, volunteer, donors, professional staff, rabbis, educators, event participants and students. Situated on a 100-acre campus in west Boca Raton – the largest in the nation – the JFSPBC supports more than 70 beneficiaries, engages with more than 5,000 donors, and connects more than 130,000 residents. To learn more about how we contribute to a shared vision for the Jewish community, visit www.jewishboca.org or call 561.852.3100.