Around the OU

New Leadership for OU’s West Coast Region Seeks to Continue the Legacy, Reach New Heights

February 27, 2020

At the Orthodox Union’s West Coast region annual gala banquet last year, which celebrated the region’s 50th anniversary and honored Rabbi Alan and Sandy Kalinsky for over 30 years of leadership and dedication, immediate past OU President Martin Nachimson, announced Rabbi Kalinsky’s plan to retire.

“Rabbi Kalinsky built the OU’s West Coast region to its prominent position, directing the full range of OU services,” said Mr. Nachimson following the event.

During his time as director, Rabbi Kalinsky worked both as a mentor to rabbis and as a liaison to Orthodox Union member synagogues throughout the region.

As Rabbi Kalinsky transitions to retirement, two successors assume his responsibilities: Rabbi Adir Posy, National Director of OU’s Synagogue & Community Services, and Solly Hess, OU Director of Institutional Advancement, West Coast.

“It’s been my pleasure to serve the OU on the West Coast and bring to reality the dreams that many national and West Coast leaders had for decades,” said Rabbi Kalinsky. “I’m pleased that the mantle of leadership is being passed to very competent Jewish professionals with a longtime relationship with the OU and NCSY. I wish Rabbi Posy and Solly Hess tremendous success in building upon the foundation we have built. I know they will take the West Coast to greater heights.”

Rabbi Posy will work with OU member synagogues on the West Coast, providing vision, leadership, and programmatic support throughout the region. Rabbi Posy is the former Assistant Director of OU’s West Coast region and has served the National Director of Synagogue & Community Services for the last three years. Rabbi Posy, the Associate Rabbi at Beth Jacob Congregation in Los Angeles, is a father of eight boys.

“The OU has been a force for good in the West Coast for over 30 years due to the tremendous efforts of Rabbi Kalinsky who built our West Coast organization up from very modest beginnings to where it is today,” said Rabbi Posy. “Today, we offer support to synagogues, represent the Orthodox community on the public stage and offer a wide variety of Torah and community programs to all segments of the kehilla. It is truly an honor and a tremendous responsibility to join forces with Solly and the rest of the OU team to carry this legacy forward.”

Mr. Hess will be overseeing all West Coast OU fundraising efforts and work with various OU programs to enhance their respective visibility and maximize their impact. “I’m thrilled to be working with the West Coast leaders of OU programming, from NCSY, OU-JLIC, and Yachad Los Angeles,” said Hess, “and I look forward to engaging our communities to grow the OU’s reach.” Solly’s previous work with the OU includes running West Coast NCSY, during which time he helped revitalize the West Coast region, enhance the organization’s brand, and establish a culture of fervent and active Jewish life among a diverse community of students, parents, and lay leaders.

Most recently, Solly served as the Western States regional director of OU’s Synagogue & Community Services. He received his MBA from Pepperdine University and lives in Long Beach, CA with his wife, Sasha, and their three children.

Scott Krieger, OU’s West Coast region president summed up the news: “For nearly 35 years Rabbi Kalinsky has devoted himself to the West Coast region. He is loved by the entire community for all of his past work and devotion. The time has come for Rabbi Kalinksy to enjoy his next stage of life and to pass on this legacy to the next generation. I look forward to working with our new team, Rabbi Posy and Solly Hess. I am truly excited to seeing what this new dream team can accomplish.”

The words of this author reflect his/her own opinions and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Orthodox Union.