By the Thousands: New Orleans, Brooklyn, Too

This is a busy day in the Jewish world. In addition to the Global Day of Jewish Learning, the 2010 GA of the Jewish Federations of North America is set to open in New Orleans; and in Brooklyn, the annual Chabad-Lubavitch International Lay Leadership Conference. The first two are likely to gather the greater media coverage – certainly in the mainstream and Jewish press.

The Leadership Conference runs concurrently to the International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries, a five-day series of workshops, classes and inspirational gatherings for the approximately 4,000 emissaries serving Jewish communities in 70 countries, from New Zealand to Nepal to Hawaii and all points in between. Participants from both events will gather tonight for a gala banquet known as the largest sit-down dinner in New York City.

Featured speakers at the lay leadership conference include Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, chairman of the educational and social service arms of Chabad-Lubavitch; Russian Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar; Rabbi Shraga Sherman, a graduate of the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania who went on to found the Chabad Center of the Main Line in suburban Philadelphia; Rabbi Dovid Eliezrie, director of Chabad of North County in Yorba Linda, Calif.; and radio host Dennis Prager.

The International Conference, which opened earlier this week, provides a five-day smorgasbord of workshops, inspirational gatherings, field trips, and one-on-one counseling sessions designed to strengthen those who strengthen Jewish communities around the globe.

According to Rabbi Mendel Kotlarsky, a conference coordinator, a total of 97 workshops, delivered by 300 presenters and moderators, addressed a variety of topics, including utilizing technology to further Jewish knowledge, running campus activities, and administrating a day school.