Dr. Bob & Anne Yudell
The Jewish community in Charlotte was much smaller when we arrived in 1960. To us, Charlotte was the ideal place in which to live and raise our four daughters. Although we didn’t know anyone here, we became active in the larger as well as the Jewish community.
Bob grew up in New Bern, NC, a small town with few Jewish families. Without a rabbi living in town, a student rabbi came to lead High Holiday services. There were only a couple of Jewish students in his high school. A strong connection to Judaism was instilled by his parents. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from Duke University where he met Anne, a UNCG student. After marriage in 1953, Navy internship and Washington D.C. residency, we moved to Charlotte to open an ophthalmology practice.
We found Charlotte very accepting although at that time there were some neighborhoods where Jews could not buy homes. Temple Beth El became an important part of our lives. Bob served as president of Temple Beth El and was a Board member for twenty-two years. He was also a member of the Jewish Family Services Board and organized the Maimonides Society for Jewish medical professionals.
Anne was raised in a kosher home in NJ, attended twelve years of Sunday school, sang in the choir and was confirmed before Israel became a state in 1948. Formerly employed by Duke University and General Electric, she later opened ballet studios in Maryland and North Carolina, with proceeds going to Jewish charities. As an opera singer and symphony player of the flute and piccolo, Anne enriched religious services with her chamber orchestra and interdenominational liturgical dancers. Sunday school teaching and fostering interfaith relations were priorities. She sculpted the Psalm lintel stone over Temple Beth El’s sanctuary door and the marble cornerstone in the Levine Jewish Community Center.
We feel it is important to assist financially in order to perpetuate the Jewish values and institutions that have served us so well over the years. We remember that the Torah teaches us to leave the corner of the fields for the needy.
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