OU EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR CONFERENCE TO BRING SYNAGOGUE ADMINISTRATORS FROM ACROSS NORTH AMERICA TOGETHER, NOVEMBER 7-9;
SESSIONS TO LEAVE NO ASPECT OF SYNAGOGUE LIFE UNTOUCHED
The Third Annual Orthodox Union Executive Directors Conference will once again bring together synagogue administrators from around North America — from 13 states and Canada — to discuss the ever-changing environment they face and how their role shapes synagogue policies, leaving no aspect of synagogue life untouched. The Conference will be held from Sunday, November 7-Tuesday, November 9 at the Young Israel of Woodmere in Long Island, NY. Many of the scheduled workshops will consist of interaction among the participants themselves, with the sharing of information and ideas.
The Conference is a project of the Karasick Department of Synagogue Services at the Orthodox Union, under the direction of project coordinator Yehuda Friedman.
“The Orthodox Union is a network that helps connect synagogues across North America,” explained Rabbi Steven Weil, OU Executive Vice President. “By presenting this conference, the OU provides an opportunity for executive directors who would never have a chance to interact with one another to share their expertise so as to bring their synagogues from good to great.”
“A rabbi who has a strong executive director knows that he can attend to the spiritual, while the executive director assures that the synagogue functions smoothly and efficiently, with fundraising/finances, marketing, security, administration, and maintenance of the facility as major priorities,” Rabbi Weil said. “It is a most significant partnership, and an important building block of a shul’s success in serving its community.”
Rabbi Dr. Jonathan Rosenblatt, of the Riverdale Jewish Center in New York declared, “Our executive director always returns from the OU Executive Directors Conferences inspired, comforted and super-charged with new and creative ideas. I anticipate it eagerly by proxy for him! The conference has created a professional community for some of the most crucial, hard-working people in the synagogue world.”
More than 35 executive directors from across North America are already registered to participle, with more to come. The registration so far is:
• California-Beverly Hills, San Diego;
• Florida-Boca Raton;
• Louisiana-New Orleans;
• Maryland-Baltimore, Silver Spring;
• New Jersey-Livingston, Teaneck, West Orange;
• New York-Atlantic Beach, Bronx, Far Rockaway, Lawrence, West Hempstead, Woodmere;
• Texas-Dallas, Houston;
• Washington, D.C.
Rabbi Weil will be presenting a session on “Fundraising: Not Just Dues and Dinners – Tools to Build a Successful Fundraising Campaign.” Sessions covered will include “Should We Strive to be All things to All People;” “Work-Family Balance, The Synagogue Leadership Perspective;” “Work Smarter, Not Harder: No-Stress Efficiency Tools for Every Shul;” “Marketing and Social Media;” “Steps in Securing a Homeland Security Grant;” and “Are Our Practices Really Best Practices?”
Speakers will include executive directors Dr. Alan Singer of Congregation Shearith Israel in New York; Beth Cohen of Beth Israel Synagogue in Omaha; and Naomi Malakoff of the United Orthodox Synagogue in Houston, in addition to Rabbi Shlomo Einhorn, director of WINGS (We Inspire New Growth Synagogues), a new OU initiative and rabbi at the West Side Institutional Synagogue in New York.
Shami Jacobs, past president of the Beth Israel Synagogue in Omaha, declared, “The OU Executive Directors Conference is an invaluable tool in helping to incorporate innovative programming and best practices across the organization. Our shul and community have benefited greatly from having our executive director attend, and I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend it to other shuls as well.”
According to Rabbi Hayyim Angel of Congregation Shearith Israel in New York, “The annual OU Executive Director’s Conference is a stimulating forum for executive directors. The sessions are packed with vital information that benefits our historic synagogue, and the collegial contacts are invaluable. I encourage every synagogue to send its director for this motivating annual event.”
To register, contact Yehuda Friedman at FriedmanY@ou.org or call 212.613.8225.