January 3, 2023

I want to begin this week’s column by wishing everyone a very Happy New Year. I hope that the start of 2023 has gotten off to a great start.

As I enjoyed New Year’s Eve, surrounded by family and friends, I realized that while many other people make New Year’s resolutions, I tend not to. Not sure why that is… maybe because every time I have in the past, it was very rare that I kept them (or even remembered what they were) within the first two weeks. Don’t get me wrong; I believe that, as individuals, there are things we can do better and should try. And I continue to ascribe to this philosophy. But change is hard and takes a lot of work and commitment.

This past January, I was about to complete my Certificate in Jewish Leadership from the Spertus Institute for Jewish Learning and Leadership. During this program, we spent several sessions discussing how challenging change can be within an organization. My classmates and I discussed how long change can take and how unless everyone within the organization believes in and is committed to bringing about change, that change may happen differently than intended. And, of course, this does not even address the amount of time and energy it takes to make the change and do it effectively.

Having said all this, I hope you have begun to see the change the Jewish Federation has been making over the last year or so. The responses we received from our 2021 Community Survey have helped shape some of our changes. This has included an increased focus on community-wide approaches to addressing such issues as security and confronting/responding to antisemitism. This focus will continue well into 2023 and beyond.

In addition, many people responded that even though they were aware that the Jewish Federation existed, they needed help better understanding precisely what we do. As such, we spent some time developing a new vision statement that we believe better articulates and explains what the Jewish Federation does and the value we add to the community. While our mission continues to be to build community by strengthening and enhancing Jewish life, our new vision statement is the following:

The Jewish Federation of the Greater San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys is a resource for everything Jewish in the greater San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys. We are a safe place for people to find their way into and connect with both their Judaism and the Jewish community. The programs and services we provide celebrate the Jewish community and create opportunities for people to engage with the beauty and richness of Jewish culture. And we are the Jewish voice for our local community, the eyes, and ears which serve to locally educate and promote Judaism and Jewish life. 

Please join us this Sunday at 10:00 am for our 28th Annual Meeting and learn more about what we accomplished in 2022 and what is in store for us (and our community) in 2023. Registration is required to attend, and the deadline to register is this THURSDAY – https://www.jewishsgpv.org/calendar/jewish-federations-28-annual-meeting.


Add Comment