Meet Robert and Carol Keehn

When Carol proposed to Robert 43 years ago, they knew from the start their marriage would center on Judaism.

The Keehns moved to Baltimore in 1979, joined Beth El Congregation and raised three boys while Robert grew his orthopedic surgery practice.

Robert has long believed there are two things we must do as Jews: “First, be involved with the Federation system (The Associated) because it cares for the vulnerable in our community and helps Jews living in the Diaspora and Israel,” he says. “Second, be involved with our synagogues to ensure our religious spirit.” With that in mind, Robert served as president of Beth El Congregation from 2001 to 2003.

Today, as co-chair of The Associated’s Maimonides Society, a networking group for health care professionals who donate $1000 or more to The Associated’s Annual Campaign, Robert works to involve more of his peers and colleagues. “The Maimonides Society is a great way for health care professionals to connect with The Associated and learn about the deep impact of their giving. Doctors save lives, but they also change lives through their philanthropy.”

Their commitment to community, synagogue and history has taken the Keehns to Jewish communities around the world. They have taken friends to say shechehiyanu on the mountaintops of Jerusalem and have visited historic synagogues throughout the world. They recall their most recent trip with The Associated to explore Jewish Cuba, “Not having a word in common, we celebrated Shabbat with the Cuban Jews. We ate, we danced, we felt a sense of community, because we were all Jews,” says Robert.

“Through our travels, we’ve met Jewish people all over the world living very different lives. We know how important it is to give back to community,” adds Carol.

In their hunger for Jewish learning and history, Carol and Robert are active members at the Jewish Museum of Maryland (JMM). As vice president, Robert is looking at ways the JMM serves as the heart of Jewish history of Maryland and welcomes more visitors to exhibits such as the 2016 Beyond Chicken Soup: Jews & Medicine in America.

What’s next? Through their travels, their volunteerism and community connections, the Keehns’ focus remains on meaningful Jewish experiences, led by their mantra: “Learn something new every day.”

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