Expert On Jewish Organizational Leadership is New Spertus President

logo_sm2The Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies (Chicago) has announced the appointment of Dr. Hal M. Lewis to the position of President and CEO, effective July 1, 2009.

Dr. Howard A. Sulkin, who has served as Spertus President and CEO since 1984, will become the Institute’s Chancellor.

Dr. Lewis joined the Spertus staff in 2002 as Dean of Public Programming and Continuing Education. He earned his Doctor of Jewish Studies degree from Spertus College and is a recognized authority on leadership, particularly on the unique needs of 21st-century Jewish organizations. Last November, Dr. Lewis was appointed to the new position of Senior Vice President / Chief Operating Officer. In this capacity, he supervises day-to-day operations and programming, budget management, and a series of organizational planning initiatives including interdepartmental collaborations involving the programmatic branches of Spertus and external partnerships and collaborations.

Prior to joining Spertus, Dr. Lewis served as the President and Chief Executive Officer of the Columbus (Ohio) Jewish Federation. He is a recognized authority on leadership and has published widely on the subject in both the popular press and scholarly journals. He is the author of Models and Meanings in the History of Jewish Leadership (The Edwin Mellen Press, 2004) and From Sanctuary to Boardroom: A Jewish Approach to Leadership (Rowman and Littlefield, 2006).

His professional experience includes positions as the Executive Vice President of Adath Israel Congregation (Cincinnati, Ohio), Campaign Director and Assistant Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Cincinnati, National Executive Vice President of the American Sephardi Federation (New York), and Director General of the International Jewish Committee for Sepharad ’92 (New York, Jerusalem, and Istanbul).

An educator, Dr. Lewis has served on the Teaching Faculty of the University of Cincinnati, University of Illinois, Chicago, Baltimore Hebrew University, the Wexner Heritage Foundation, and the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School, where he participated as Visiting Faculty at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

A passionate advocate for adult learning, his extensive experience with religious and communal groups gives him a unique perspective on organizational leadership in America.