When Rabbi Menachem Genack, Chief Executive Officer of OU Kosher, was recently invited to the White House with his family to participate in a Jewish heritage event, they were told to bring proper identification.
However, upon reaching the outside gates to the White House, Rabbi Genack’s son Moshe was informed that his yeshiva ID was not acceptable because he needed a government-issued ID. Having travelled from New York to Washington, D.C. looking forward to listening to President Obama, and participating in the event’s program, the Genack family was not about to lose hope.
Rabbi Genack turned to Jack Lew, White House Chief of Staff, who was at the event, for assistance.
Rabbi Genack explained that his son had met with a problem getting into the White House. Would Mr. Lew be able to help? Jack Lew spoke to the White House Usher, who was in contact with the Secret Service. It was decided Moshe Genack would be permitted entry on the condition that Mr. Lew vouched for him.
With Mr. Lew vouching for Moshe, the entire Genack family was able to enjoy the program. Afterwards, Mr. Lew commented, “It’s nice to be able to give a hechsher to the OU.”