Palm Beach, FL, March 30, 2017 – Sheila and Alec Engelstein were presented with the MorseLife Health System Chairman’s Award at the nonprofit’s 2017 Biennial Meeting at The Colony Pavilion tonight. Stephen Levin, MorseLife Health System Chairman, made the very special presentation at the close of the meeting.
The Chairman’s Award was established in 2012 by the organization’s late Chairman David Markin to recognize individuals who significantly contribute to the mission of MorseLife through their commitment to philanthropy and leadership.
In making the presentation, Stephen Levin made note of Sheila and Alec Engelstein’s long-standing generosity in providing leadership and guidance, and in providing major support since MorseLife’s founding. “They envisioned a community that would serve the older Jewish population that was just starting to grow in the late 1960s and 1970s,” he said. “What MorseLife is today is the product of that vision and we are so grateful to you for the legacy you have created on on behalf of MorseLife and the cherished seniors we continue to serve.”
In receiving the Chairman’s Award, the Engelsteins received a commemorative maquette, called “Generations,” created for MorseLife Health System by renowned sculptor Marc Mellon. Mellon’s maquette is a smaller version of the large sculpture that stands on the campus, a gift of Beatrice Bloch and Alan Sagner.
Background on Sheila and Alec Engelstein
One thing is certain, the focus of Sheila and Alec Engelstein has been all about “building community” since they arrived with their two children in Palm Beach in 1969. One of their many legacies established for MorseLife is The Tradition building, which is named the Sheila and Alec Engelstein Tower in their honor.
Sheila and Alec have been a critical part of MorseLife’s history since its beginnings over 34 years ago. They shared a vision for the care of seniors in Palm Beach with fellow founders and friends Erwin Blonder, Heinz Eppler, Irwin Levy and Alan Shulman.
Alec was building chairman for what is now called Morse Health Center. Sheila has been a major force through her own leadership and commitment to “giving back” through their passion and vision, and power of their philanthropic spirit.
A Holocaust survivor, Alec settled in Montreal in 1948 with the help of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). Sheila once said that his goal, which he shared with her, was to live the “American dream,” and as a determined young man, that dream was to work hard, make a life for himself and his family and leave this world a better place.
That is exactly what they did, and so many organizations such as MorseLife are better for that. With a successful business, Engel Homes, the Engelsteins – Sheila and Alec and their two children – were, in fact, living the “American dream,” and never took any of their good fortune for granted.
On behalf of MorseLife, Sheila and Alec envisioned a community that would serve the older Jewish population that was just starting to grow in the late 1960s and early 1970s. What MorseLife is today is the product of that vision and we are so grateful to them for the legacy created on its behalf and on behalf of cherished seniors.
Sheila and Alec are inspiring role models – always visionary and always philanthropic. MorseLife is so fortunate to be the beneficiary of their leadership, friendship and philanthropy.