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Rabbi to travel to Vienna

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By Kirsten Laskey

Whether hosting religious events or visiting an ill patient, Rabbi Jack Shlachter has helped lead the Los Alamos Jewish Center. Now, leadership will be passed to new hands as Shlachter and his family take a temporary leave of absence to go to Vienna, Austria.Shlachter explained he will be working for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization. His work in Vienna could last up to two years. Shlachter said he and his family will be “playing it by ear.”To recognize Shlachter and to say goodbye, the Jewish Center will host a reception and open house from 2:30-4:30 p.m. Jan. 4 at Fuller Lodge.This is not Shlachter’s first trip to Vienna. From 1985-1987, he worked for the International Atomic Energy Agency. Shlachter first arrived in Los Alamos in 1979 as a graduate student. He stayed on after receiving his degree. Currently, Shlachter is a leader of the physics division at Los Alamos National Laboratory. In 1985, Shlachter received his ordination.Shlachter describes Los Alamos and the Jewish Center a “wonderful community. It provides people with opportunities to develop as adult Jews, in part because it is a relatively small community and it depends on its members for success and help.”Looking throughout his time in Los Alamos, there are several achievements in the Jewish Center that Shlachter is proud of. “I think that the commitment to continue the Jewish study on the part of the adult community has strengthened over the years,” he said. “(Religious study) strengthens their own lives but serves as a wonderful example to the young members of the community.”He added, “I believe this is a very committed community and it’s been a delight to be a part of it.”Shlachter’s involvement in the community has also been a delight for others.Andrew Dattelbaum, president of the Los Alamos Jewish Center board, said, “Jack has been a leader of the Jewish Center for many years now, so his leadership will be missed both in the community and in the religious activities at the center.”The Jewish Center is still discussing how to fill Shlachter’s position, Dattelbaum said.Several individuals have volunteered to take up different aspects of Shlachter’s duties.However, Dattelbaum said, “No one can replace what he’s done for the community.”