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Mark Isakov

Mark Isakov

Financial Planner, Mortgage Specialist

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Financial Planner, Mortgage Specialist

Thornhill

How long have you lived in Ontario, and why did you choose Thornhill?

We arrived in Canada in 1991 and immediately settled in Toronto in the Jewish community of Thornhill. We chose this area because it is very important to be at the center of Jewish life, to take part in all of its events.

Where does your family come from?

My mother’s family is descendent from the ancient and highly revered rabbis of Azerbaijan. My parents held all the traditional rites, through which every Jew is obliged to pass: Brit Milah, Bar Mitzvah, Chupa. In our house the Jewish holidays were always observed, including preparing Passover holiday meals using specially designated cookware and dishes. I remember my grandmother always hid a piece of matzo - the Afikoman, and to those who found it she gave a one ruble reward (which for us children was a lot of money). On Chanukah we were always given Chanukah gelt, and in our courtyard, where, basically, Jewish family life was centered around (the so-called Jewish Baku courtyards) we lit Chanukah candles whose light still illuminates my life.

What do you do in your free time? Do you have any hobbies?

I love to play sports, especially swimming, and this occupies a lot of my free time. I also love to cook.

Isn't that unusual for a man?

Quite the contrary. In the east, the culinary masters are very often men, especially when it comes to cooking meat.

What do you most like to cook?

My favorite dish, which I do best, is a barbecue.

If you were given the opportunity to meet anyone, alive or dead, who would you choose, and why?

I'd really like to meet with Avraham Avinu, our forefather Abraham. He is one of the most important personalities in the history of the Jewish people. All of Jewish values start with him, including honesty, compassion, and gratitude to G‑d. How involved are you in JRCC programs? From the day of my arrival in Toronto, I always took part in the celebration of the Jewish holidays, which were organized by the JRCC. I really like the programs of our Jewish center. I find it very important, especially for the next generation.

What are your future plans?

I plan to devote more time to the study of Torah.

 

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