Marty and Jeff each found themselves at A&M Records somewhat unexpectedly over 42 years ago. Jeff, who was born and raised in Culver City, had pursued a law degree, practiced for a couple of years and then following his creative passion, shifted course, and became the Creative Director and head of marketing at A&M. Marty, after a childhood of moving to a different US city every few years, finally found a home in Southern CA. On a whim, she took a job at A&M after a break from years of dedicated teaching of hearing-impaired students at LA area high schools. It was a good choice. Their paths crossing turned into a love and life together. They believe the glue in their relationship is humor.
After A&M, Marty pursued a degree in Architecture and Jeff continued a long career in the music business with the founding of Virgin Records America with his other partner, Jordan Harris. Marty and Jeff married and had two awesome kids. While raising their daughters, they rescued the cutest black and white dogs, spent weekly dinners with Jeff’s family in Culver City, and went to a lot of truly incredible concerts. One morning in 1990, after Jeff heard news of a Florida rapper being arrested because of his lyrics, an idea came to him. Jeff founded Rock the Vote, guided by the principle that a just US democracy included the youth voice which could equalize the imbalanced US voting system. And that engaging youth with inherently political cultural production, music specifically, was essential in doing so. RTV continues to register hundreds of thousands of youth voters before every major election.
Individually and together, Marty and Jeff have designed numerous projects, but by far, their most rewarding and compelling creations of all, are their two daughters Anna and Eve, an artist and a doctor. Anna’s recent marriage brought a favorite son in law, Chop, into the family. Marty and Jeff are deeply connected to their family, but their feelings of connection and love go well beyond their chosen family and community.
Marty and Jeff joined IKAR 11 years ago. In IKAR they found a righteous community that they value more and more over time. Marty was moved by IKAR’s prioritizing social justice while embracing deeply Jewish traditions and values, and they both felt connected to Rabbi Brous’s progressive Jewish voice and the music Hillel and the team were creating. Marty found her way to the advocacy work of IKAR Organizing. After training in community organizing and many meetings with coalition groups, she became the co-chair of IKAR Organizing and continues in that role today.
Marty is excited by the power of community organizing and strives to engage the IKAR community in the advocacy efforts of IKAR Organizing. After participating on the IKAR Board for 6 years, she hopes to contribute by being on the Advisory Board. Both Marty and Jeff are looking forward to the process of IKAR creating a new home. Jeff is involved in the early planning and vision phase and they both will continue to support the future of IKAR.
Both Marty and Jeff are grateful and honored to be the honorees at this year’s Party With a Purpose. Laughter brought them together as a couple, guides their family’s way, and it has lightened their lives, just as IKAR has done.
We all deserve an evening of laughter, HA HA!