It generally takes two to make a match. But in order for Chloe Leavitt, 27, to meet Michael (Mike) Fabiani, 30, it took an additional three: Chloe’s mom, Lauren; Mike’s mom, Marcy; and Lisa, a friend of both Lauren and Marcy.
Their families first connected about 35 years ago when Lauren and Lisa were good friends in Port Washington, New York. When Lauren was pregnant with Chloe, the Leavitt family moved to California, and the two moms maintained a long-distance friendship.
In 2006, Chloe moved East to study Art and Art History at the University of Michigan. After graduation, she moved to New York City. Chloe explains: “I knew I wanted to work in fashion, and New York was where I needed to be.” Today, Chloe is the director of fashion accessories in New York for HATCh, a sales representative organization for multiple fashion brands.
After a relationship ended for her in the fall of 2011, Chloe was sans boyfriend. “When my mom asked if she could give my name to Lisa, I wasn’t much into the idea,” recalls Chloe. “But I agreed.”
Lisa thought of Mike, and she called her friend, Marcy, to set up the couple. Lisa notes: “I just somehow had a feeling that they would be great together; and they are.”
Mike grew up in White Plains, New York, and received a B.A. in Economics from Tufts University.
Today he is an associate at the New York law firm of Haworth Coleman & Gerstman, where he specializes in product liability and construction litigation.
“In truth, Mike wasn’t very engaging when he first called me,” says Chloe. Mike had other things on his mind. He was in his second year of studies at Brooklyn Law School. But Chloe didn’t mind taking the lead. She decided on the time of their first date and the place – City Winery. A few days later, she followed up with a text message.
Mike’s friends had told him to wait a while before asking for a second date. “I didn’t play those games,” smiles Chloe.
By the beginning of 2012, they had an exclusive relationship. Mike recollects: “I was confident early on that Chloe was The One. I invited her to my cousin’s wedding only a few months after we started dating. I would not have done that with just anyone.” Chloe adds: “And they even included me in their family photos.”
Would Mike agree that mom knows best? His response: “Of course she does. She trusted her friend’s advice, which turned out to be great advice.”
Chloe and Mike planned a Chanuka party for Saturday night, December 20, 2014, and invited friends. Her parents flew in for the weekend.
The night before, Mike suggested to Chloe that they go ice-skating in Bryant Park. Chloe reminisces: “When my sister asked me what I was wearing to go ice-skating, I sensed that something significant would be happening.” She wasn’t disappointed. Mike proposed at the side of the rink. “I am quite shy and reserved,” says Chloe, “and was glad that it didn’t happen in the middle of the rink.” The Chanuka party planned for the next night became their engagement party.
On April 10, 2015, in Santa Barbara, California, Rabbi Gordon Tucker, a friend of the Fabiani family in White Plains, officiated at the marriage of Mike and Chloe. East meets West.
Dr. Leah Hakimian currently researches the question: How Jewish couples meet and marry. In the 90’s she founded two nonprofit Jewish matchmaking programs, and continues to champion the role of community in helping singles meet. She resides in Jerusalem and Great Neck, New York.