16 Camp Directors from across North America graduated the Executive Leadership Institute (ELI) at a commencement ceremony this past week. The Executive Leadership Institute was created by Foundation for Jewish Camp (FJC) in 2006 to improve Jewish summer camps by significantly upgrading the leadership and management skills of camp directors.
In 2005, the Marcus Foundation provided FJC its first $1 million grant to establish ELI. ELI is a 20-month program that challenges Fellows to elevate their leadership and management skills by learning from experts and recognized leaders in various disciplines, from the business world to the nonprofit sector. The program includes six seminars, individual mentorship, the use of customer feedback data, and travel with peers and faculty members to visit at least one camp other than their own. The program also enables each participating director to implement a project specific to their camp.
The fourth cohort to participate in an ELI program, the current group of graduates includes fellows from across the US and Canada, representing 5 movements (Union for Reform Judaism (URJ), Ramah, Association of Independent Jewish Camps (AIJC), JCC Association, Young Judaea) and Independent camps.
Foundation for Jewish Camp (FJC) has long invested in field professionals, developing and implementing some of the most highly regarded professional development opportunities in the Jewish professional world. ELI has graduated 52 participants in three cohorts (the previous one ended six years ago in 2012.) Many of these graduates have described the program as the training that has most positively influenced their careers and professional development
Photo: Front – Geoff Menkowitz (Ramah Darom), Rabbi Joe Menashe (Camp Ramah California), Esther Staum Katz (Camp Shoshanim), Bernie Marcus (founder of Home Depot and The Marcus Foundation), Anna Herman (URJ Henry Jacobs Camp), Jeremy Fingerman (CEO of FJC), Lisa David (URJ Camp Harlam) Back – Rabbi Joel Seltzer (Camp Ramah in the Poconos), Robin Anderson (Camp Young Judaea Midwest), Toni Davison Levenberg (Camp Interlaken JCC), Jeremy Klotz (URJ Goldman Union Camp Institute), Simon Wolle ( Camp Northland), Adam Weinstein (Berkshire Hills Eisenberg Camp), Josh Pepin (CBB Montreal), Gary Kibort (Herzl Camp), Elisa Spungen Bildner (co-founder and Board Member of FJC), Rob Bildner (co-founder and Board Member of FJC), and Rebecca Meyer (Camp Tawonga).