Sunday, September 29
“The initial responses have been overwhelmingly positive and we know with DRG’s assistance, we will find a terrific new CEO for our community. " - Steve Greene, Search Committee Co-Chair
A Community Update: BJF CEO Search
The search for the next CEO of the Birmingham Jewish Federation is well underway. The Search Committee, co-chaired by Steve Greene and Jesse Unkenholz and comprised of a diverse cross-section of the community, is working with Sarah Raful Whinston of the nationally known search firm, DRG. She has looked throughout the country to bring a strong pool of candidates for our BJF CEO position.
This search is a key milestone for the Federation, coming at a pivotal time when Richard Friedman, our Executive Director of 37 years, is retiring at the end of the year. It is also a milestone in the community-wide plans that were developed through the NextGen and Joint Committee processes. As you may remember, last year, a passionate group of next generation leaders engaged in a six-month visioning process and developed the Road Map, a plan designed to serve, grow and sustain a cohesive Birmingham Jewish community. The BJF is seeking a new CEO who will play a critical role in strengthening the Federation and will also work toward the collaborative and cohesive community envisioned in the Road Map.
To help lay the groundwork for future collaborative efforts, the Birmingham Jewish Federation and the Levite Jewish Community Center have signed a new Collaboration Agreement. Under this agreement the BJF CEO will also serve as the Chief Visionary Officer (CVO) of the LJCC, joining with the LJCC Executive Director to develop strategies and a joint vision for the future.
The CEO Search Committee, working with the BJF Board of Directors, hopes to bring several candidates to Birmingham after the Jewish holidays with the goal of hiring our new executive by the end of the year.
The program is in its second year and already we’re seeing the impact it is having in creating the next generation of leaders in the Birmingham Jewish community.
Jewish Women's Leadership Institute
The Women's Leadership Institute is a year-long course designed to involve young Jewish women in Birmingham in a dynamic leadership process that enhances their lives and enriches our community. Participants gain a more intimate view of our community’s history and potential, learn from highly skilled women who are role models of communal responsibility and mentors, and gain expertise that will empower them to be responsible and wise leaders

This year’s mentors are Sheri Krell, Ronit Ron, Julie Stein, and Lori Weil. Mentees are Caleigh Alevy, Claire Diamond, Alexis Ginsburg, Colette Grodner, Kendal Jaffe, Meredith Odrezin, Sarah Schaeffer, and Sharron Swain.
Funding for the program has come from individual donors, the Birmingham Jewish Foundation, and the Women's Jewish Learning Center in Phoenix, AZ.
“We welcome the release of this unprecedented report on the subject of Anti-Semitism," said Israel's ambassador to the UN Danny Danon. "The report reflects the organizational change toward Israel. The assertion that the BDS movement encourages Anti-Semitism is an important UN statement.”
Unprecedented UN report highlights growing Anti-Semitism
The Jerusalem Post reports that the United Nations has released an interim report by the Special Rapporteur on freedom of religion or belief that paints a disturbing picture of growing anti-Semitism.
“The report, which the Israeli mission to the UN called ‘unprecedented,’ identified anti-Semitism from all sides of the political spectrum and called for action.” the Post reported.

“In 2019, Leket Israel has provided a monthly average of 1,420 tons (3.13 million lbs) of food, rescued from 700 food producers, to 200 non-profit organizations servicing Israel’s most needy.”
Recipes, Rescue, and Rosh Hashanah
The Birmingham Jewish Federation, through its Israel-World Jewry Bureau, funds Leket Israel, an agency that “rescues” food and delivers it to Israel’s needy. Leket recently wrote: 

 “As we approach Rosh Hashanah, allow us to thank the BJF for its generous support and to wish all of you a joyous and healthy New Year. We also are delighted to send you this link to Leket Israel’s Rosh Hashanah  Recipe Collection .”
LJCC Pool "Gone to the Dogs"
This past Sunday, September 22, the Levite Jewish Community Center, along with the Animal League of Birmingham, hosted the 4th Annual Pooch Plunge. In 2016, 100 dogs came to swim; in 2017, we hosted 140 dogs; in 2018, 180 dogs invaded our pool; and, this year, 260 pooches stormed the LJCC to cool off in the water. 

This is a fundraiser for both the Animal League of Birmingham and the LJCC. In 2016, we started the Pooch Plunge trend and became the first non-profit to offer this opportunity to our furry friends. It is one of our most well attended events and attracts members and non-members alike to the LJCC. We are happy to host a special event for man's best friend!
Upcoming Community Events

Community Education Series "How was it possible?"
Thursday, October 3 at 5:30 pm, at the Birmingham Holocaust Education Center. Session 1: "The Context" facilitated by Ann Mollengarden.

High Holiday Concert at Knesseth Israel
Saturday, October 5th at 8:00 pm at Knesseth Israel. Featuring Rabbi Moshe Rube and Cantor Richard Shavei Tzivon. Free to attend.

Falafel Sunday
Sunday, October 6 at noon, at Chabad of Alabama. All you can eat falafel, pita, Israeli salads, pizza and more! Moon bounce and game room for kids.

Senior Grocery Initiative: Family Volunteer Opportunity
Sunday, October 13 at 12:30 pm at NEMJDS. Individuals and families are needed to package and deliver groceries for low-income older adults. Everyone is welcome to help, delivery area is limited and time commitment is under 2 hours. To sign up or learn more, contact Jennifer Nemet, or 205.278.7118.

Scholastic Book Fair
October 15-20 in the LJCC Main Lobby. Proceeds from the book sale benefits the Cohn Early Childhood Learning Center.

Homelessness Series: Open Sukkah
Thursday, October 17 at 5:30 pm at Temple Beth-El. Together, the congregations of Southside are making homelessness their theme this year over three events. Join us as we get to know each other better and learn about the work Five Points is doing in response to the increasingly urgent issue of homelessness. This program opens the synagogue's sukkah to the entire community during the festival Sukkot. Learn more

Little Scientist STEAM Preschool Program 
Sunday, October 27 from 10-11 am at the N.E. Miles Jewish Day School. The theme is “Make Some Noise”: We’ll focus on the science of sound, instrument-making, exploring pitch, and visualizing sounds. Learn more