Webster’s dictionary defines partnership as “a legal relation existing between two or more persons contractually associated as joint principals in a business” and lists the following as synonyms: affiliation, collaboration, alliance, connection, and relationship.
I have been thinking about this term and concept a lot recently, including as I attended a special celebration yesterday honoring a 50-year partnership between USC and Hebrew Union College, my alma maters. As you may be aware, I simultaneously attended both universities when I earned two Master’s degrees – one in Social Work and one in Jewish Communal Service (now called Jewish Nonprofit Management). As I sat and listened to remarks from USC President Dr. Carol Folt and HUC President Dr. Andrew Rehfeld, what struck me the most was how proud they were of the partnership and how much stronger the universities were by having spent the last 50 years working together.
Rather than only celebrate their past accomplishments, they were already discussing new ideas and more innovative ways that their partnership could continue to build on the legacy they have already created.
As I sat listening, I could not help but think about the partnerships the Jewish Federation has developed and fostered over the years. And it was not so much that these partnerships have existed, but more so the power of what they have meant to our community and what we have accomplished because of them.
I can honestly say that the Jewish Federation would not be what we are today without our strong relationship with our local synagogues and schools. It is why I consistently call them our community partners. Not only do we complement what each provides to our community, but by valuing this relationship and working together, we have helped create a strong and vibrant Jewish community here in the greater San Gabriel and Pomona Valleys.
It is essential to understand that the community is also an integral partner in what we can do. You see, without the community - our participants, our donors, and the community as a whole, we would not have been able to make the profound impacts we have in and around the community.
As the saying goes and was alluded to yesterday, there is great power in numbers. So not only do you have more people pulling in the same direction, but through partnerships, you can tap into a more incredible wealth of knowledge, expertise, creativity, and passion.
Thank you for being one of the Jewish Federation’s partners. Together we have made great things happen here, and I look forward to seeing what more we can do in the days, weeks, months, and years we continue to work together.