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August 2018

July 2018

Glenn J. Nashen awarded National Assembly Medal of Citizenship

Glenn J. Nashen, Associate Director of Communications and Media Relations for CIUSSS West-Central Montreal, has been awarded the National Assembly’s D’Arcy McGee Medal of Citizenship in recognition of his many contributions to the lives of Montrealers in and beyond the provincial riding of D’Arcy McGee.

Mr. Nashen, a former long-standing City Councillor in Cote Saint-Luc, accepted the medal on June 19 from David Birnbaum, MNA for D’Arcy McGee, in a ceremony at City Hall.

The D’Arcy McGee Medal of Citizenship

The D’Arcy McGee Medal of Citizenship

In a video message, Premier Philippe Couillard praised Mr. Nashen for his “years of devoted service as a Cote Saint-Luc City Councillor, highlighted by your visionary leadership in creating a ground-breaking Emergency Medical Services team, as well as a unique volunteer citizens’ patrol, which are deeply appreciated by the community.

“Your continued volunteer and professional accomplishments only add to your fine record of community involvement.”

“Glenn exemplifies the kind of qualities of personal and professional dedication, leadership and energy that inspired me to create this medal ceremony in the D’Arcy McGee Riding,” Mr. Birnbaum noted. “I think it’s poignant to remember that he also joins [pioneer HIV/AIDs researcher] Dr. Mark Wainberg among the worthy past winners of the medal.”

Mr. Nashen has had a life-long interest in emergency services, which was among his key portfolios when he served as Councillor from 1990 to 2001 and from 2005 to 2017. He began volunteering in 1979 as a First Responder for Cote Saint-Luc’s Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and was a part-time Emergency Medical Technician with  Urgences Santé during the 1980s and ’90s.

Mr. Nashen says he is particularly proud of his key role in transforming the EMS into a modern, 24/7, all-volunteer, life-saving operation. He also saved it from closure in the early 2000s, a time of uncertainty when Cote Saint-Luc had to merge with the City of Montreal, only to de-merge later. Today the EMS responds to 3,000 life-threatening or potentially life-threatening calls per year.

Also created and launched by Mr. Nashen in 2006 was the unique and innovative  volunteer organization, Citizens on Patrol, which he built into an organization of nearly 100 participants who keep an eye on the city in marked patrol vehicles, scooters and bicycles. The volunteers assist and inform residents on matters of public safety, and they alert the authorities to any emergencies they come across. This public safety service, unique in Quebec, is greatly appreciated by area residents.

Since joining the JGH in 2001 as Director of Public Affairs and Communications, Mr. Nashen has been instrumental in enabling the hospital and, later, the CIUSSS to keep pace with rapid and constant changes in web and social media, branding, media relations and political affairs, while providing news and information about the JGH and the CIUSSS to the public and members of staff.

In addition, from 1995 to 2000, Mr. Nashen worked for Federation CJA where he headed the Young Leadership Division and founded the Jewish Chamber of Commerce. From 2000 to 2001, he was Executive Director of Alliance Quebec.

Mr. Nashen is married to Dr. Judy Hagshi, a family physician at the JGH.

Coping with parking issues on Marc Chagall Avenue

The past 16 months have not been easy for anyone residing on or near Marc Chagall Avenue with construction of the condo living highrise project called The Equinoxe.   The first of two buildings will be completed by early fall and tenants have already moved in to the first few floors. It is more than 80 percent rented, I am told. Excavation on the second building will begin in August.

When the project was announced I formed a committee of representatives from the local condo associations and the developers. We have met several times and line of communication is open. We have made progress on many issues, but the reality is nobody will be completely happy until the second facility is completed. That is probably at least 18 months away as we no longer allow outdoor construction on weekends, something that was realized upon the insistence of the condo reps. Interestingly enough there are many former Marc Chagall Avenue condo residents who have sold their units and moved to The Equinoxe.

The Equinoxe

Right now we have a serious issue with parking. For starters,  at the Equinoxe their driveway and rear parking lot will be used for tenant parking starting  on July 23. The developers are painting lines temporarily  and assigning spots to ensure it remains organized.We have asked then to use the city lot and their front entrance drop off areas as a last resort. They have plenty of space to accommodate all their current tenants, but there is nothing stopping them from parking on the public street as well, just like all neighbouring building occupants may also park on the street free. Access to the garage should be open in early September. The garage is ready inside, but the driveway just needs to be leveled, compacted and paved. The sidewalks on the property and concrete borders are complete.

Complicating matters is news that the Rothchild II at 5850 Marc Chagall will be commencing garage work that can no longer be delayed as of August 13. The work should take between five and six weeks. Residents of the Rothchild II will have to be displaced and park on the street. The Rothchild II has about 12 parking spots that will be used for the priority condo owners who are handicapped, but the condo requires an addititional five handicapped designated spaces on the street. Our Public Security  Department is working with building management on this matter, but the fact remains this still leaves about another 83 owners who will have to park their vehicles on the streets around the condo. Let's not forget that the large number of workers on the Equinoxe take up spots too. We leased them land across from the Marquise. In spring and summer the land was too soft for cars to park, but it seems fine now and we will urge them to use this space.

I want to assure everyone that our senior staff in Public Security and Urban Development are working diligently on what is by no means an easy situation to resolve. Thanks to City Manager Tanya Abramovitch, Co-City Manager Jonathan Shecter , Urban Development Director Charles Senekal, Urban Planning Manager Jeff Davey  and Mayor Mitchell Brownstein for their tireless efforts and support.


An inspiring idea from Rosemount for park benches

Thank you to constituent Vivian Silver and her son Josh for sharing this article. Definitely food for thought!

This Montreal borough turns infested trees into beautiful wooden benches

Tyler JadahJul 18, 2018 7:12 am252


The borough of Rosemont-La-Petite-Patrie and Projet Montreal have teamed up to give dying trees a second chance by recycling them into gorgeous, wooden benches for the public.

The project is part of the “a tree for my neighbourhood” program and focuses on ash trees that have been threatened by emerald ash borers.


Ash borers, originally from Asia, are invasive beetles that eat and destroy trees from the inside. Montreal has been dealing with an infestation of the insects since 2012. Once infested, an ash tree can only survive for two to five years afterwards.

In Rosemont, more than 8,000 ash trees (one street tree out of three) are threatened by the beetle, according to the Ville de Montreal website.

The program aims to remedy its urban forest by turning the infested trees into public pieces. The Borough has also preserved the wood of dozens of infected trees that will be used for furniture, such as picnic tables, benches or ice-hockey rinks.

The latest collection of refurbished trees have been transformed into park benches.

wooden benches

Project Montreal/Twitter

wooden benches

Arrondissement Rosemont/Twitter

wooden benches

Project Montreal/Twitter

wooden benches

Project Montreal/Twitter

Take that, pesky beetle.

New traffic calming measures on Sir Walter Scott and Kildare the latest improvements enacted

Traffic safety continues to be among paramount importance for me as the city councillor for District 2.
I am pleased with the changes that have occurred at the back entrance/exit for  the City Hall/Library complex. The speed bump and the signs notifying motorists to go around the circle has brought forward the positive results we expected. However, some of my constituents have wisely asked for another speed bump in the parking lot  as vehicles approach the turn to make their exit. There is no question too many speeding incidents are occurring. Our Traffic Committee has agreed to look at this at their next meeting.
New bollards at Sir Walter Scott and Kildare Road.
A few years ago I was able to get stop signs installed  at the corner of Sir Walter Scott and Kildare Road. As I take my regular walks, I still see too many vehicles making short stops or going right through.  Last week we took increased traffic calming measures with the addition of some bollards and signs urging vehicles to slow down. I monitored the corner for the past few days and I am pleased with the results thus far here as well.
These bollards are part of 10 intersections in the city which will have high visibility traffic calming. The intersections include flexible bollards, fexible signs, more pedestrian crossing signs, silhouettes for school and park areas and extra line painting.
Next up will be a new stop sign at the corner of Kildare and Rembrandt for vehicles headed towards Cavendish. We hope this will bring some relief for motorists from Rembrandt during morning and afternoon rush hour having to cope with the traffic from JPPS/Bialik.  While I know some residents wanted a stop sign on the other side, our Traffic Committee studied this closely and determined that it would cause serious backups from vehicles turning on to Kildare from Cavendish.

Mourning Sam Lifshitz

I wish to extend my deepest sympathies to the family of Shabtai (Sam) Lifshitz, who passed away on July 9.

Sam was a constituent and a neighbour who made his mission as a Holocaust survivor to regularly scan the different news media and send out mass e-mails of articles he felt people should read, often with his own personal commentary. Whenever I would run into him we always had an interesting and animated discussion on the topics of the day.

As a city councillor, Sam would call or e-mail me often with his concerns in the district. But he also added suggestions -often very good ones. He attended my Town Hall meetings and  always tried to get a seat in the front row.

Over the last few years Sam suffered very serious back issues to the point where walking had become very difficult. He did not look for any sympathy and whether it was attending meetings or walking to to our pool, he made the effort,

Sam will be deeply missed by his wife of fifty-five years Tzipora (Fany), a retired school teacher and wonderful lady. He was the cherished father and father-in-law of Yael and Jay Lipman; Mitchell Lifshitz and Sarah Bloomfield, grandfather of  Jesse, Daniel and Riley.

Funeral services were on July 11. Shiva is at his home, from 2:00 to 4:00 and 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. daily. Contributions in his memory may be made to the Beit Halochem - Aid to Disabled Veterans of Israel, (905) 695-0611 or visit or to the Association for the Welfare of Soldiers in Israel, (514) 738-2858 or visit

Joe Presser is properly honoured at 2018 Golf Classic luncheon; weather permitting we play on July 19

Myself, Councillors Oren Sebag, Mitch Kujavsky, David Tordjman, Ruth Kovac, Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, Joe Presser, Mount Royal Liberal MP Anthony Housefather and Councillor Dida Berku. (All Photos by Rami Negev)

As a massive heatwave hit our province, we reluctantly decided to take the prudent approach to postpone our 39th annual Côte Saint-Luc Golf Classic. If Mother Nature cooperates, we will all be at Meadowbrook Golf Course on Thursday, July 19 to play nine holes on the gorgeous land we all hope will remain green forever.

I have had the pleasure of co-chairing the Golf Classic for the past 13 years, initially with former Councillor Allan J. Levine and then Sam Goldbloom. Allan, Sam and I are extremely proud of how we took an event which was beginning to experience a significant drop in registration and turn it into a sold out affair months in advance. I must share a lot of that credit with our invaluable Parks and Recreation staffers Harold Cammy and Alvin Fishman. We opened up registration to people of all ages and more importantly chose to select an annual honouree.

While the golf is a lot of fun, the luncheon became the real big draw. So when we had to put off the golf portion on July 5, the show very much went on. Councillor Dida Berku was my co-chair this year and how appropriate given the decades of work she had put in to keep Meadowbrook free from development. Our honouree was long-time community leader and volunteer Joe Presser, a man I consider a good friend and a true supporter of mine in District 2 from day one of my time on council.

Joe has been active at programming in Côte Saint-Luc for most of his life, notably at Beth Zion Congregation, the Parks and Recreation Department, the Cummings Centre Sports Celebrity Breakfast and the Côte Saint-Luc Men’s Club. But he was often the man behind the scenes, not getting his deserving day in the sun.

Michael Maislin (fourth from the right) is thanked for his sponsorship.

Everyone gathered for cocktails at our Aquatic and Community Centre, sponsored by Joe’s son-in-law Michael Maislin of Total Customs. This is one of the programming arrangements Cammy and Fishman implemented a few years ago and it provides a great opportunity to mingle and get an early start on things.

Marc Ezerzer and Hagai Brener are thanked for being title sponsors.


A big thanks to Marc Ezerzer and Hagai Brener from Team Ezerzer-Brener of Vantage Realty Group for returning as a title sponsor. They provided guests with caps and made a generous donation to the event. The Beth Zion Congregation via Marty Labow sponosored a surprise cake for Joe and Pharmaprix Quartier Cavendish Pharmacists David Banon and Rachel Ettedgui and store manager Ian Macdonald donated all of the water, canned soft drinks and juices for the luncheon and golf day. Lenny Rosenberg from TCBY once again donated TCBY cups for dessert. Silver Star Mercedes have sponsored a car at the 11th hole in one contest. Someone will get that car for a weekend.

Pierre Brunet from McDonald's, the absolute gentleman.


We sold raffle tickets at $10 each, with the money going to the Pierre Brunet Parks and Recreation Bursary Fund – something I wish to elaborate upon. Just a year and a half ago Pierre approached Harold Cammy and I about finding a local Côte Saint-Luc cause which touched kids in need which could benefit from annual McHappy Day events at his CSL Road McDonalds. Harold and I brainstormed and came up with the Fund, which provides bursaries for families which may not have the means to send their kids to camp or register for a program. This has taken off like a rocket.

Not only have funds come in from McHappy Day, but we have connected this cause to the Golf Classic (Pierre was an honouree a few years ago) as well. Pierre donates coffee to our Men’s Club each week. They sell the cups and proceeds now go to the Fund. D’Arcy McGee Liberal MNA David Birnbaum has contributed so have a number of individuals. Following this year’s luncheon the total raised in just two years stood at an incredible $17,000. Cammy told the story of a refugee family from Nigeria that just moved to CSL with no money to send their kids to camp. Thanks to the Fund their three kids are having an amazing summer. There are many other heartwarming stories like that


I invited Councillor Berku to provide everyone with an update on the status of Meadowbrook. I have been associated with this Golf Classic as luncheon emcee for decades, but I only began golfing upon being elected to council and co-chairing the event. As I pass through the course via the Back Nine holes we are on Côte Saint-Luc territory and the surroundings are picturesque. The owners of the land have wanted to develop housing here for years. Likewise on the Front Nine, which is on Lachine territory.

Councillor Berku noted that in 2015 the Agglomeration Council of Montreal adopted can urban plan for the island and declared Meadowbrook as recreational greenspace. “We hope that will be respected by the current owners,” said Councillor Berku, who would love to see tennis courts and even a reception hall built on the grounds."  See this CTV report.

Côte Saint-Luc has been in court with the owners of the land since 2001 when we were sued for $20 million for rezoning the property recreational. That remains unresolved.

Alan Maislin and Pierre Pagé are thanked for their participation.


Everyone enjoyed a nice buffet lunch, followed by our special guest speaker Pierre Page. His presence was made possible thanks to Alan Maislin, a noted community leader, president of the West Central Montreal Health Board (CIUSSS) and the dad of Joe’s son-in-law. Alan introduced Pagé while CSL resident and TSN 690 Radio Weekend Game Plan host Matthew Ross moderated the program.

Matthew Ross moderates questions for Pagé.

Pagé started out at the age of 24 with Dalhousie University as an assistant coach. He became the head coach the following year, a position he held for seven years. He then coached in NHL for 13 years with the Minnesota North Stars, Quebec Nordiques, Calgary Flames and Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. He was an assistant coach with the Flames that went to the 1986 Stanley Cup Final, losing to the Montreal Canadiens.[3]After being dismissed by the Mighty Ducks, and out of hockey for one season, he continued his coaching career in Europe where he has coached in Switzerland (Ambrì-Piotta), Germany (Berlin Eisbären) and now in Austria. In Berlin, he led the club to its first two championships. He is currently the Sporting Director and Head Coach of EC Red Bull Salzburg in the Erste Bank Hockey League in Austria.

Pagé was a pleasure to listen to. As general manager and coach of the Nordiques he made the historic trade that sent Eric Lindros to Philadelphia in exchange for a group of star players, including Peter Forsberg. He shared with us that he almost became the GM of the Canadiens. As for the performance of current Habs GM Marc Bergevin he was diplomatic but not complimentary. “Since 1994 the Canadiens have been going in the wrong direction,” he said.


Mannie Young auditions for Just For Laughs.


Men’s Club President Mannie Young next came to the stage and roasted our honouree Joe Presser. His predecessor Syd Kronish and Presser then presented a $2,000 cheque to the Pierre Brunet Fund. Irving Leiner, a close friend of Joe’s, gave a nice tribute.

"The late Rabbi Sydney Shoham, who we miss terribly,was a dear and close friend to Joe and would often and affectionately refer to Joe as 'Pressure.' I’m certain Rabbi Shoham is qvelling at this moment so in loving memory of the rabbi and out of admiration and respect for Joe this will be a tribute to pressure. At the age of 8 and living on City Hall Avenue, Joe and his six siblings sadly lost their father and survival skills at a very young age were untimely thrust upon Joe. As a young boy and as a means of recreation, Joe spent all  of his free time at  Neigborhood House where the cost was free unlike the nearbyY that charged a yearly unaffordable fee of $50. He quickly honed his leadership and athletic skills there and became a dear friend to many, some if whom are here to pay tribute to Joe. However there was a time for play and more importantly a time to help support the family. So at the tender age of 16 he left school and did what most Jewish boys at that time did for a living. He went to work in the schmattah business for a men’s clothing firm called Cooper clothing. He started off as a shipper and then was given a sample bag and a territory and told by his boss to go out and sell and return home only with a bag full of orders. Back in those days, not only were you selling the line but you were given the task of collecting past due receivables, so when Joe went calling on his customers and asked to be paid for last season’s merchandise the retailer sensing the innocence and vulnerability of this young salesman doubled down on their placing orders. So Joe quickly sensing victory forgot about the past due receivables and triumphantly began to write the orders. Wow! Was the boss ever going to be impressed. Needless to say, the homecoming displayed by his boss could have been a little more receptive. And Joe quickly learned that writing orders was easy, but getting paid is a whole different ball game --- which begs the question ------ was the account ever shipped Joe? After a few seasons of abuse and schlepping samples on the road , Joe and a colleague soon took over ownership of the firm and quickly grew it to a prominant and leading mens and boys clothing firm."

Joe’s wife of 58 years, Isabel, was on hand as was his daughters Janet (with husband Michael Maislin) and Shari (with husband David Perl) and some of his grandchildren. Son Mitchell lives in Michigan. It was also nice to see the Blumer family on hand for they are part of the Presser clan.

The Presser and Blumer families take part in a group photo.


I have known Joe most of my life. He is a fabulous individual whom as a youngster worked as a shipper at Cooper Clothing and eventually bought the company. In 1988 I was hired as the national director of communications for Canadian Jewish Congress. I called Joe and went to see him as I needed some nice suits to wear for work. He took care of me like I was his own son. When I first ran for office in 2005, he took me door to door to every resident in his building. Last November, 12 years later, he did the same thing – quite impressive for a man who is 80 years young and thankfully in very good shape.

A look at the fabulous cake Moshe Engler made.

 Before Joe spoke to the audience, Alvin Fishman rolled out the big surprise – a cake shaped like a business suit made by the one and only Chef Moshe Engler. We then watched a nice photo montage on the screen put together by our Public Affairs and Communications guru Darryl Levine.

For the door prizes, it was nice to have Allan J. Levine and Sam Goldbloom emcee that portion of the program. There was a nice assortment of gifts available.

The invaluable Harold Cammy shares some words.

Finally thanks to our luncheon volunteers Toby Shulman, Peter and Rhoda Sternberg, Doris Gottheil, Dina Ancel, Maureen Hankin, Elaine Waisgrus and Mark Avigdor. As well, hats off to Robin Chemtov on the keyboard.

So now we hope for good weather on July 19. I know Joe is already practicing his putts.

CSL marks Canada Day with traditional citizenship ceremony

While Canada Day festivities were postponed on July 1,  the City of Côte Saint-Luc did maintain one strong tradition: our citizenship ceremony.

It was Mayor Mitchell Brownstein, then a city councillor and an immigration lawyer by profession, who first came up with this idea over a decade ago. Originally these events were scheduled outside at Pierre Elliott Trudeau Park. However, in order to avoid any last minute changes due to weather patterns we moved it indoors a few years ago at our Aquatic and Community Centre.

Councillors Erdelyi and Tordjman.

With Citizenship Judge Barbara Seal presiding  and Councillors David Tordjman and Steven Erdelyi as emces,  40 new citizens from 16 different countries were sworn in. This is always a wonderful experience to  be part of. Mayor Brownstein, Mount Royal Liberal MP Anthony Housefather and D’Arcy McGee Liberal MNA David Birnbaum gave inspiring words of welcome. Judge Seal, speaking so eloquently as usual, provided an extraordinarily warm welcome to the newcomers.

Judge Seal and Public Safety Director Jordy Reichson.

“Life was difficult at times for you,” Judge Seal acknowledged. “Adaptation to every day life, making new friends and finding new jobs. I hope all of these problems have been resolved.”

Judge Seal  led us in a recitation of the Canadian citizenship oath. Everyone on hand took part. Each new citizen, some  composed of small families, were then called to the stage one by one to receive their certificates.

Citizenship Seal
With Mayor Brownstein as children sing O Canada with Judge Seal.


After the singing of our national anthem, everyone was invited to a small reception.

As for Canada Day activities, including the fireworks, will be rescheduled stay tuned. We should have some news Tuesday or Wednesday. It could be as early as next Sunday or as late as  the end of August.