Our Top Posts of 2017

In case you missed any, here – based on site analytics, and in alphabetical order – are our Top Ten posts from 2017:

Birthright Israel Expands Eligibility to Include Trips for 27 to 32 Year Olds

For the first time since its founding, a limited number of Birthright Israel trip options for 27 to 32-year-olds.

Introducing the Slingshot Class of 2017

This year Slingshot also published two regional editions: the Bay Area and Los Angeles. The projects selected each create positive local impact in and around their home communities.

Jewish Summer Camps for Young Adults Launching this Summer

Israel Outdoors, an organizer of Birthright Israel trips, has launched Trybal Gatherings, a series of four-day all-inclusive getaways at Jewish summer camps across the county for young Jewish adults in their 20s and 30s.

Jim Joseph Foundation Invests over $23m. in Jewish Educator Professional and Leadership Development

The Jim Joseph Foundation has announced a $23.7 million cumulative investment in 21 organizations following an RFP process to address two critical areas in Jewish education: Educator Professional Development and Leadership Development.

Lets Grab Coffee: Shifting from Affiliation to Engagement
By Rabbi James Greene

When I left home for college, I was not Jewishly connected. This was somewhat surprising since both my parents were working for the Jewish community at the time.

Minding the Gap: A Primer for Jewish Professionals and Philanthropy
By Yehuda Kurtzer

The gap is real between American and Israeli Jews, with the exception of small pockets of like-minded communities, and it has been expanding even after decades of bar mitzvah tours, Birthright trips, intense investment in Israel education, and the growth of the pro-Israel advocacy agenda.

Nine Reasons Jewish Organizations should Issue fewer Public Statements
By David Bernstein and Abby Porth

The zeal for public statements cuts across the liberal-conservative divide.

Old Models of Jewish Legacy Institutions No Longer Working, Experts Say
By Toby Tabachnick

The research and statistics are in, and the message to Jewish legacy organizations – those longstanding community institutions that historically have held fast to the status quo – is loud and clear: To be viable into the 21st century, the template must change.

Why Bother? A Religious School Manifesto
By Rabbi Nicki Greninger

This goes out to all parents thinking of sending their kids to a (Jewish) religious school… to parents who were raised Jewish, those who chose Judaism, and those who aren’t Jewish but married a Jew.

Why Now? Why Here? Understanding the Rise of AntiSemitism in America
By Steven Windmueller, Ph.D.

The most recent wave of anti-Semitic actions, involving at the time of this writing, two Jewish cemeteries (St. Louis and Philadelphia) and 89 bomb threats, have been directed against 72 Jewish institutions in 30 states since January 1st. These numbers have given rise to new and alarming concerns about hate crimes in this nation directed against Jewish Americans.

Honorable mention to:

Jewish Day Schools: Its Time for a Tuition Revolution
By Shawn Evenhaim

The future of the Jewish people depends in part on the future of Jewish education.

The Continued Decay of Jewish Federations

By A Fedeartion Pro

At about this time of year, the overwhelming majority of Jewish Federations end their UJA Annual Campaigns. If the conglomerate grew, even a bit, you would have read an article here – among other places – by someone from JFNA crowing from the rooftops. Just one more collective donor, one more total dollar and we all would know.