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Emerging from the Cave at New Member Institute

Posted on Monday, August 20, 2018 by Tammy Hepps

In the last session of this year’s Wexner Heritage New Member Institute in Snowmass, Colorado, Rabbi Moses taught us the Talmudic tale of when Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai and his son emerged from a cave after twelve years of Torah study and prayer. Upon encountering the outside world, filled with its humdrum concerns, “every place that they directed their eyes was immediately burned” (Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Shabbat, page 33b). Rabbi Moses sought to instruct us on how to c…

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On Judges, Kings, Priests and Prophets: Is the Jewish-Leadership Status Quo Sufficient?

Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2018 by Rabbi Rachel Sabath Beit-Halachmi, Ph.D.

Parashat Shof’tim not only presents many different leadership dilemmas, but also succinctly offers multiple forms of leadership. The message is clear: No one single type of leader is sufficient. Each of these different forms and philosophies of leadership is both necessary and liable to fail. By himself, Moses dramatically failed God and the Israelites on many occasions. And Joshua, while a worthy warrior, by himself could not transform a nomadic rebellious tribe into a strong and just soc…

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Limmud Seattle

Posted on Thursday, August 16, 2018 by Julie Kohl and Karen Treiger

Diversity, respect, empowerment, expanding Jewish horizons, enabling connections, arguments for the sake of heaven, learning and community. Do these values resonate with you? Well, then you should attend a Limmud.    Limmud is a volunteer-run Jewish festival, found in over 80 cities, 42 countries and on six continents. They last from one day to a week and bring all segments of the Jewish community together to study, to sing, to dance, to do art and, of course, to eat.   I am …

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Gender Preference Identification Pins

Posted on Wednesday, August 15, 2018 by Zissy Turner

What is striking me the most is how sensitive and thoughtful people are when it comes to issues affecting them and their personal identity. There’s a generosity of spirit in learning and knowing about others’ experiences and taking them to heart. The planning committee really gelled and we created an institute where our fellows felt challenged yet comfortable in expressing themselves.   The pins were WGF Ari Witkin’s idea (Class 28) and we felt they were icing on the ca…

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Now Hiring: Wexner Israel Fellowship Program Manager

Posted on Monday, August 13, 2018 by Becca Thomas

The Wexner Foundation invites applications for the position of: Wexner Israel Fellowship Program Manager.   The Wexner Foundation, based in North America and guided by the vision of our chairmen Leslie and Abigail Wexner, is focused on strengthening Jewish professional and volunteer leaders in North America and public service leaders in the State of Israel.    The goal of the Wexner Israel Fellowship Program is to provide Israel’s next generation of public leaders with …

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Disconnect to Reconnect – How Celebrating Shabbat is Good for your Mental Health

Posted on Friday, August 10, 2018 by Justin Milrad

Growing up in Toronto, I really enjoyed our Friday night dinners. We would have my grandparents, uncles and cousins join us for Shabbat. I have great memories of playing in the backyard with my cousins and practicing my golf swing with my grandfather. When it came to mealtime, we would say the prayers, light the candles, break the bread, drink the wine and enjoy hearing everyone’s stories and experiences from the past week. We actually talked and savored being with one another.   So…

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A Time for Review

Posted on Thursday, August 09, 2018 by Rabbi B. Elka Abrahamson

The new moon is approaching and this Shabbat we will welcome the month of Elul: the mindset of the Days of Awe slowly embraces us. We begin the season of reflection, considering our own practices. We would like to reflect on our Foundation habits, specifically on how we communicate with you. To further amplify our efforts, I’m excited to introduce our new Director of Communications, Becca Thomas. Eager to start learning from our incredible network, Becca and our team have created the follo…

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#WexnerRSJ – A Modern Day Exodus Journey

Posted on Thursday, August 09, 2018 by Stella Binkevich, Lenny Gusel, Lena Katsnelson, Boris Khodorkovsky, Lenny Vayner

Who is the New York RSJ (Russian-speaking Jewish) 2016 cohort? We are a diverse group: some of us were brought here as children, some as young adults, some fully formed. We are from Russia’s big cities, from towns in Ukraine, the Baltics, the Caucasus, and even Siberia. We are all Jews from the former Soviet Union, with a shared experience of liberation, emigration, and eventual resettlement in America, thanks to the efforts of so many in the American Jewish community.   For the las…

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Utah Top 40: Reflections from Madregot 2018

Posted on Thursday, August 09, 2018 by Natalie Barth

I thought the Wexner Network would enjoy learning some of the themes and takeaways from our recent Wexner Heritage Summer Institute, where NY RSJ 16, NY 16 and Philadelphia 16 transitioned into becoming alumni. We are taking these nuggets with us as we move onward and upward on our Jewish leadership journeys. #THXWEX   1.    Change is the job of a leader. 2.    The destination is always out of our grasp but you can’t desist from going on the journey. 3…

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Another Message to our "Wexner" Family from Israel

Posted on Thursday, August 02, 2018 by Ram Shmueli

In these challenging times, we all carry the responsibility to connect hearts and minds between brothers and sisters from both sides of the ocean.   Regretfully, I was surprised to read the publication on behalf of our friends Nadav Tamir & Or Rachlevsky in last week's WexnerLEADS, that could have been misinterpreted as a statement representing all Wexner Israel Fellowship Alumni and members of the Senior Leader Network.     With careful reading the authors …

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