Marcie Platkin and Mary Ellen Shouler, 25 years of impact at the...

Marcie Platkin and Mary Ellen Shouler, 25 years of impact at the North Shore Jewish Center

North Shore Jewish Center. File photo

By Peter Sloniewsky 

On Sunday, May 5, the North Shore Jewish Center hosted a Silver Jubilee gala celebration honoring two women, Executive Director Marcie Platkin and bookkeeper Mary Ellen Shouler, for 25 years of service to the NSJC.

“I am extremely proud to be the executive director of this wonderful congregation … I always say there is a feeling of Chevra [‘’your people”] and fulfillment working for NSJC,” Platkin said.

Shouler added that, “Working here at the North Shore Jewish Center has been like working for a family business. I will always remember the families I have come to know and the children I have watched grow over the years.”

The NSJC is a Conservative Jewish congregation in Port Jefferson Station that describes itself as a “vibrant center of Judaism in Suffolk County.”

Platkin, raised in Jericho and certified with a master’s degree in social work from Adelphi University, began a long career of community and religious services as an organizer for the Jewish Association for Services to the Aged. She later went on to become an administrator of the New York State Family Self-Sufficiency Program under Gov. Mario Cuomo before starting at the NSJC in 1999.

Shouler, described as being “known for her sweet and calm disposition,” said she has “worn many hats.” Growing up in Smithtown, she worked at first for Western Electric in New Jersey but then “wound up back in Smithtown.” She found herself at the NSJC first as a part-time secretary and gradually advanced to the position of bookkeeper. 

Both women placed extensive value on the positive effect that the NSJC has to the Long Island community. 

In her speech at the event, Platkin described it as a place to learn and grow as a Jewish people and to formulate Jewish identity, but also “the one place outside home where [she] feels most comfortable,” noting that she had announced her engagement on the same bimah [podium where the Torah is read] 22 years earlier.

Shouler was similarly grateful for her experience: “[Starting at the NSJC] was a totally new experience for me, I was also learning about Jewish culture and the Jewish faith. Who would have known when I started here at the North Shore Jewish Center that so much time would pass and that we would be able to share many life events with each other.”

The gala was a heartfelt tribute to the two remarkable women for their dedicated 25 years of service. Their personal reflections highlighted the profound impact NSJC has had on their lives and the community. 

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