As an OB/GYN in town for nearly a quarter-century, Dr. Jennie Faber Schwartz is best known for delivering babies, not for being dealt royal flushes, straights or full houses.
But Schwartz, 53, recently became the first place winner of the first-ever Virtual Mid-Atlantic Poker Tournament presented by the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces’ Mid-Atlantic region.
The online poker tournament, hosted with the virtual poker site Faded Spade, was held on Oct. 18, 22 and 26, with the final table on Nov. 1.
A mother of two adult children, Schwartz, 53, lives in Reisterstown with her husband of 27 years, Jonathan Schwartz. A New Jersey native, she moved to Baltimore from Pennsylvania for her residency at Sinai Hospital, where she continues to practice. Schwartz has been with the Aurora Women’s Health practice since 1997.
More than 80 FIDF supporters from the Mid-Atlantic region participated in each tournament this year to support programming for Israel Defense Forces soldiers.
The top prize was an entry to a Maryland Live! tournament valued at $1,100. In addition, Schwartz’s name will be inscribed on the “Champions Plaque” at the FIDF Baltimore chapter office.
“I’ve always loved to play cards,” Schwartz said. “Playing poker online for the charity event was very fun. I had no idea I would win! I just wanted to represent the women well, as I knew I was the only one in the finals. It was a huge adrenaline rush when I saw my stack growing bigger and bigger!”
FIDF’s Baltimore chapter raised more than $30,000 for the IDF Home Front Command and the Kedem Battalion, a search-and-rescue unit that conducts emergency operations in Israel and abroad. The event’s proceeds will benefit FIDF’s Adopt-A-Unit Program, which supports Israeli soldiers in the adopted units by providing financial assistance to soldiers in need, caring for “Lone Soldiers,” and funding rest and recuperation weeks for combat soldiers.
“As a Jew, Israel Is very important to me,” said Schwartz, who belongs to Baltimore Hebrew Congregation. “Supporting the soldiers who maintain the freedom of that great country is why I support FIDF.”
The virtual tournament was co-chaired by Michael Steinhardt, owner/president of the Pikesville-based Clear Path Advisory Inc., and Dror Mei Tal, president of the Owings Mills-based Global Telecom-Brokers and co-founder of the FIDF Baltimore chapter.
Steinhardt and Mei Tal started the poker tournament in 2015, which has since expanded to include FIDF supporters from Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.
“The virtual poker tournament is a wonderful opportunity for FIDF supporters to come together and have fun while funding FIDF’s well-being and educational programs for IDF soldiers,” said Steinhardt. “We are so glad that the event was able to take place this year amid the pandemic and that we could participate safely.”
FIDF recently announced that the organization will merge its Mid-Atlantic and Southeast regions into a “mega-region.” The new Eastern Region will be composed of Maryland, D.C., West Virginia, Kentucky, Mississippi, Delaware, Alabama, Tennessee, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Virginia.
For information about FIDF, visit www.fidf.org.