Shelby Lerner, z"l Fund

About Shelby

It is hard to believe that it has been two years since Shelby has left us. Though very difficult at times, we have been able to move forward as a family of three, while still incorporating Shelby into our daily lives. We have been able to get into our routine, travel, grow and learn from each other. We have continued to be supported and loved by so many.

One constant for us has been the wonderful community of Chicago Jewish Day School. In one of his final messages, Shelby sent the email below to the head of school:

“We are continually grateful for being part of such a wonderful community.  Thank you to you and your entire team that dedicates countless hours to building a tremendous educational system and community.  So many people, including us, are the better because of you and your team's’ efforts.  Thank you.”

Shelby also preferred to be outdoors. Shelby loved walking the dog, watering the grass, riding bikes/rollerblading with the kids, and stalking Cubs players in the neighborhood!

New CJDS Campus

Our school, which was founded in 2002, has grown to more than 200 students in junior kindergarten through grade eight.  The school has been renting space from a local synagogue and church but is running out of space!

The school recently moved to a new property. Renovations are complete on a portion of the property to allow the growing school to move while continuing fundraising efforts before completing the project entirely.  The new 2.6-acre campus will include flexible classroom spaces and progressive science and innovation labs in renovated, vintage buildings, along with an on-site gymnasium, sports field, playgrounds, and outdoor basketball courts. 

Shelby Lerner z"l Fund

What better way to honor and remember Shelby than naming one of the outdoor elements of the new campus in his name? We aspire to name the playing field for Shelby – a beautiful way to combine his love of CJDS with his affinity for the outdoors and the Cubs. The kids love this idea and made the first donation to this fund by giving the proceeds of a lemonade stand. We would be honored if you will join our efforts. 

In addition to being very meaningful to our family, your gift would be a meaningful contribution to CJDS’s Capital Campaign, and will also be recognized as a commitment to the Jewish United Fund’s Centennial Campaign. CJDS has partnered with the Jewish United Fund and the school’s supporters to complete the purchase and construction of its new home. 

Contributions to Shelby’s Fund will be matched as part of a $5 million matching grant from the Crown Goodman Family.

All pledges are payable over five years.

Thank you for your consideration of providing additional outdoor space in an urban school in Shelby’s memory, which would have such special meaning to our family.

Michal Lerner

Donate to the Shelby Lerner, z"l Fund Today

Donate here today! Please indicate in the notes section that your donation is for the Shelby Lerner, z"l Fund. 

Please contact Naomi Shapiro, Director of Institutional Advancement, at 773-271-2700 if you have any additional questions.