Leadership Initiative for Professionals (ages 26 - 36)


Leadership development for emerging Jewish communal professionals in the field (ages 26 - 36)

The Wexner Davidson Fellowship (WDF) is a leadership development and Jewish learning initiative for North American Jewish communal professionals ages 26 - 36 years old. WDF provides opportunities for personal and professional growth to the next generation of Jewish professional leaders serving the North American Jewish community.

Through the Wexner Davidson Fellowship, up-and-coming Jewish professional leaders will participate in biannual institutes focused on leadership learning and Jewish education. Outside of institutes, Fellows are provided coaching, personalized Jewish learning, professional development funds and access to other immersive learning opportunities still in development.

This cohort-based program will deepen Fellows' leadership skills and Jewish knowledge and provide access to a worldwide network of diverse and innovative colleagues for the duration of the three-year program and the rest of their careers.

Applications for the Wexner Davidson Fellowship Class 2 will open in Spring 2025.  If you would like to be contacted when applications open, please complete this Google form.

Program Overview

Through this three-year professional development program, Wexner Davidson Fellows will:

Engage in cohort-based learning at biannual Institutes - Participate in six cohort-based Institutes (or virtual equivalent if necessary) on leadership and Jewish issues with skilled leadership teachers and Jewish educators. Institutes will feature learning in adaptive leadership, communication, diversity and equity, and innovation.

Receive coaching - Receive professional small group coaching for the first year of the Fellowship and work one-on-one with a leadership coach for the subsequent two years.

Deepen their personal Jewish learning - Institutes will feature group study around topics such as Mussar (character development for Jewish leaders) and Israel. Outside of Institutes, Fellows will work individually with a Jewish educator to achieve their personal learning goals.

Invest in their professional growth - In addition to coaching and Jewish education, Fellows will have access to funding to support their own professional development.

Build a strong professional network - There will be many opportunities for Fellows to connect with their fellowship cohort remotely between Institutes to network, share concerns and for peer-consultations.

Join our worldwide alumni network - All Fellows will become part of The Wexner Foundation’s network of over 3,500 professional and volunteer leaders in the North American Jewish Community and in Israel.


Jessica Reback, Director
Trisha Taylor, Program Coordinator


If you have applied to any of The Wexner Foundation’s programs in the past, you are welcome to re-apply with an entirely new application. Because we are creating a cohort, each applicant pool results in different selections and re-applications are considered independently from past applications.

If you applied to the Wexner Davidson Fellowship Class 1, you are not eligible to apply in back-to-back years unless it is your last year of eligibility.

The Wexner Foundation is focused on the health and safety of our community. Guided by public health and medical professionals on our COVID Advisory Committee, the Foundation requires all incoming participants in Wexner programs to be up to date on their COVID-19 vaccination according to the CDC. All applicants must submit proof of up-to-date vaccination before a finalist interview. If you have questions or concerns about this vaccination policy, please contact Trisha Taylor at ttaylor@wexner.net.

To apply for the Wexner Davidson Fellowship, all eligibility requirements must be met. Please note there are no exceptions to the eligibility requirements listed below. A new class will be selected each year, so you may be eligible to apply in the future if you are not currently eligible.


  • Are based in North America and employed full-time by one Jewish communal organization.
  • Will be between 26 - 36 years old by April 3, 2024
  • Meet all of the work experience requirements below by April 3, 2024:
    • At least three years of post-baccalaureate full-time work experience.
    • At least two years of which must be at a North American Jewish communal organization.
    • At least one full year of employment at current organization.
  • Are a citizen of the United States, Canada or Mexico, or have documentation that allows them to work in that country.
  • Receive the written support of the applicant's immediate supervisor and Executive Director of their current organization for full participation in the Fellowship Program (a letter of support will be provided for those invited to complete the full application).
  • Will provide proof of up-to-date COVID-19 vaccination (according to the CDC) before a finalist interview.

All eligible applicants are encouraged to apply, irrespective of denominational affiliation, gender, racial or ethnic origin, disability or sexual orientation.

Benefits & Expectations

Wexner Davidson Fellows will:

  • Participate in all Fellowship-sponsored programs totaling approximately nine days of travel (seven business days) per year for three years and ensure that there will be no conflicts with these programs. Fellows will attend two Institutes annually (a Fall Institute in early November and a Spring Institute in early May). The Wexner Foundation covers all expenses for program participation.*
  • Commit to work full-time at a North American Jewish communal organization for all three years of the Fellowship program and three years beyond (six years total).
  • Actively participate in professional coaching in both a small group and individual settings. Wexner Davidson Fellows will participate in small group coaching for the first year of the program and work with an individual coach for the following two years. Fellows are expected to prioritize coaching sessions as they would any other Fellowship-sponsored convening.
  • Work with a Jewish educator at least 12 times a year for three years to help expand their Jewish understanding based on their unique needs.
  • Benefit from access to a pool of funds (approximately $5,000 per fellow per year) for additional learning and growth. These funds can be used on Foundation-approved professional development opportunities and associated travel and accommodations. Wexner Davidson Fellows will be reimbursed for these expenses.
  • Must submit a personal W-9 (signed and dated in the current year) to The Wexner Foundation after they have been accepted. The Wexner Foundation cannot give tax advice. Some opportunities which are reimbursed may incur taxes.

*Should we be unable to meet in person due to COVID-19 or for any other reason, Fellows will be expected to join Virtual Institutes on the originally scheduled dates with up to 4 hours of additional Zoom time per month in order to build trust within the cohort. Exact timing will be determined based on Fellow availability but with an expectation that Fellows will prioritize these virtual meetings.

Selection Process


Applications open for the Wexner Davidson Fellowship. Applicants must submit a pre-application and a full application (provided after eligibility is confirmed) to be considered for the fellowship. We recommend that you complete the pre-application as early as possible to ensure you have ample time to complete the full application.

APRIL 3, 2024

Applications Close at 1:00pm EST. Applications will not be accepted after the deadline. We recommend that you submit your full application several days in advance to allow for any technical complications that might arise.


Applicants will be notified by email as to whether they have been invited for an interview. Please contact Trisha Taylor if you haven't received an email from us by April 25, 2024.

MAY 5-8, 2024

A select number of finalists will be required to interview on Zoom during the dates listed above. Finalists will sign up for an hour-long block during one of the days listed above. The selection of Fellows is made by the Wexner Davidson Fellowship Selection Committee, which is composed of professionals who are committed to Jewish professional leadership.

MID-MAY 2024

Wexner Davidson Fellowship Class 1 Fellows are selected and notified.

JUNE 2024

Wexner Davidson Fellowship Class 1 publicly announced.


Any candidate accepted as a Wexner Davidson Fellow must attend institutes in person on the days listed below through 2027 for three years total. If it is not possible to gather in person, a Virtual Institute will be held on the days listed below, with some additional programming via Zoom in the weeks preceding and following the Virtual Institute, not to exceed an additional 4 hours per month.

  • November 10-13, 2024
  • May 11-15, 2025
  • November 9-12, 2025
  • May 3-7, 2026
  • November 8-11, 2026
  • Immersive week-long Israel experience in January 2027
  • May 2-6, 2027

There will be virtual learning commitments in between the Institutes listed above, including coaching meetings, Jewish learning sessions, and other learning, not to exceed 4 hours per month.

Any Questions?

Please contact Trisha Taylor, Program Coordinator.

How to Apply

The application for the Wexner Davidson Fellowship is now open and is a two-phase process consisting of a pre-application eligibility form and the full application.

Phase 1: Pre-application Eligibility

All applicants must fill out their basic information and upload a resume as part of a pre-application eligibility form. Pre-applications are approved manually on a rolling basis during business hours. Please ensure you submit your pre-application with enough time to fill out a full application (if approved).

Phase 2: Full Application

Those invited to complete a full application will need to provide the items listed in detail below. Candidates cannot complete the full application until their pre-application eligibility has been approved.


The full application includes several short answer questions and two essays. Each essay is an opportunity for candidates to share something unique about themselves and their aspirations with the Selection Committee. Essay prompts can be viewed here.

Letter of Support

A letter of support form signed by your organization’s Executive Director and your direct supervisor. If you are the Executive Director, you should sign your own letter of support along with your Board President. The form ensures your organization is aware of the time commitment the Wexner Davidson Fellowship requires. Applicants should submit the signed form electronically.


A 60-second video answering the question provided within the application. The video should not be created professionally. Additional guidelines, including acceptable file formats, are provided within the application.

Two Letters of Recommendation

Two letters of recommendation, which are available for electronic transmission to your identified recommenders through the online application. The first recommendation needs to come from your current direct supervisor. If you are the Executive Director, your board chair serves as your current direct supervisor and therefore should write a recommendation.

Alumni Offerings

Opportunities to learn, connect, and exercise leadership do not end with the active fellowship. Through the Wexner Professional Leadership Programs Alumni Network, alumni of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship/Davidson Scholars Program, Wexner Field Fellowship, and Wexner Davidson Fellowship are invited and encouraged to participate in, and contribute to, our alumni network and community. 


History & Partnerships

The Wexner Foundation and the William Davidson Foundation have partnered to support and strengthen up and coming Jewish professional leaders for nearly two decades through the Wexner Graduate Fellowship/Davidson Scholars (WGF/DS) Program.

As a result of the tremendous success of the sunsetting WGF/DS Program and emerging trends in the field, The Wexner Foundation and the William Davidson Foundation are continuing to stack hands on a new offering. With a bespoke curriculum designed to prepare Fellows for the opportunities and challenges of today and tomorrow, the Wexner Davidson Fellowship represents a deep investment in the leadership development of North American Jewish communal professionals.