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In The News: Leaders

Positive Realist

Lifestyles Magazine
Spring 2008

Dr. Gary A. Tobin knows how to make a point- even if it's not always easy to hear what the well-known demographer and President of the Institute for Jewish and Community Research in San Francisco has to say. Tobin challenges traditional ways of thinking about Jewish communal life. He tackles hot topics like the increasing trend of megagifts being donated outside of the Jewish community, antisemitism in America's educational system, new ways of looking at intermarriage and conversion to Judaism, and the need to embrace today's growing number of racially and ethnically diverse Jews. ...more

In Living Color

Jewish Living Magazine
July 2008

Raising a biracial Jewish daughter, a mother finds herself answering many questions: from her child, from total strangers, and from her own heart.

"Mommy, you became Jewish when you had me."

That's how Mae, my eight-year-old daughter, explains it, and she's right. Sort of. Mae was seven months old when her father walked out and I became a single mom. At that point in my life, I'd never been so far from Judaism. I was firmly planted in motherhood, but it would take me a while to see that I needed my religious roots to unfold. ...more

Where Are the Women?

j., The Jewish News Weekly of Northern California
May 20, 2005

Few Jewish communities are as rich in leadership as the Bay Area. Our region has produced sterling leaders, some of national prominence, in every realm of Jewish communal life...So why run a story about the serious shortage of qualified Jewish community leaders?. ...more

COVER STORY: Who Will Fill These Shoes?

Shortage of executives impacts Jewish organizations

j., The Jewish News Weekly of Northern California
Dan Pine, Staff Writer
May 20, 2005

Dick Rosenberg gazes out the window of his downtown San Francisco office. Somewhere out there, across the fruited plain, is the next chief executive officer of the S.F-based Jewish Community Federation. More than a year ago Sam Salkin stepped down as the federationís CEO. Phyllis Cook, executive director of the Jewish Community Endowment Fund, stepped in as interim CEO, while Rosenberg, a former top executive with Bank of America, immediately established a search committee to find a permanent replacement. He still hasnít found what heís looking for. ...more

Lead Players on a Global Stage

Forward 50
November 12, 2004

The year's Forward 50 list of the Jewish community's most influential members includes rabbis and entertainers, activists and philanthropists, artists and community leaders. They don't share a single perspective or a common approach to their work -- in fact, one notable figure isn't even Jewish -- but they have all made their mark on Jewish life in America.

One of the deans of American Jewish social research, Gary Tobin has been raising eyebrows for the past decade with his maverick liberal views on conversion, adoption and racial diversity within the Jewish community. This year the San Francisco-based scholar, 55, raised eyebrows yet again by launching a partnership with the neoconservative Foundation for Defense of Democracies. So far the partnership has produced two major Tobin studies, both pro bono: one on American attitudes toward Israel, the other on anti-Israel trends on campus. Meanwhile, Tobin's own Institute for Jewish & Community Research, founded in 1997 after he left his tenured post at Brandeis University, continues to produce important new religious data. A study of professional development in Jewish organizations, released this fall, showed a deep rift between volunteers and staff and documented the persistent glass ceiling facing women staffers. Another, released in October, found that the fastest growing religious group in America is, the election results notwithstanding, people with no religious identity at all...the entire article

Lay-Professional Relationship Is Key

Cleveland Jewish News
Rachel Pomerance, Jewish Telegraphic Agency
October 8, 2004

Jews fighting is hardly news - after all, the joke about two Jews and three synagogues is familiar to Jewish communities around the world.But when the quarreling Jews also work together, it makes their jobs difficult. That's often the case with the lay-professional relationships at the top echelons of American Jewish organizations...more

Seeking the Next Jewish Leaders; Holidays Are Marked by a Campaign to Preserve Young Adult Jews' Cultural Identity

Los Angeles Times
Teresa Watanabe
September 16, 2004

As the Jewish High Holidays start today and synagogues prepare for their largest annual crowds, questions are growing over whether younger, more assimilated Jews can be coaxed into the fold as future leaders...more


Rachel Pomerance
September 15, 2004

Part 1: What makes a leader?: As Jewish community changes, so does model of good leadership

Part 2: Wanted: A Jewish leadership pool: In Jewish life, lack of candidates to take on crucial leadership roles

Part 3: Lay-professional relationship is key: Lay-professional tensions heighten the leadership challenge for groups

Part 4: Portraits of leadership: From up-and-comers to insiders, portraits of American Jewish leaders

How to Win Leaders and Influence People

Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles
Gaby Wenig, Staff Writer
July 2, 2004

Melina Gimal has been a Jewish community professional for most of her life. As a young girl she worked at Jewish Community Centers in Argentina, and later at Hillels in Washington and Miami. But most of her peers aren't doing the same...more


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