Sunday, June 21, 2020
"I’m really excited for this opportunity and getting to know the city of Birmingham this summer!"
- Shelby Etkind
BJF Welcomes a New Marketing Intern
The Birmingham Jewish Federation and Birmingham Jewish Foundation have recently hired Shelby Etkind as a marketing intern for the summer. Shelby is from Atlanta, GA, and she will be a senior at The University of Alabama in the fall. She is pursuing an undergraduate and master’s degree in marketing in addition to studying advertising and digital media. 

During her time in Birmingham this summer, Shelby is looking forward to exploring the city, trying new restaurants, and of course, the important work she is doing for The BJF. Shelby will be working on improving our social media pages, creating content, and promoting upcoming events and programs.
Birmingham Jewish Foundation announces 2020-2021 Board and officers
New Foundation Board Members Elected
The Birmingham Jewish Foundation and its leadership continue to touch almost every facet of our community. The Foundation is pleased to announce its Board members elected to new three-year terms ending in 2023: Caryn Corenblum, Jerry Held, Jack Levy, Aaron Nelson, Gary Schiff and Alan Weintraub. Scott Gewant was elected for another term as President. Joining him are other elected officers: Vice Presidents Steven Corenblum, Cynthia Tobias and Alan Weintraub; Treasurer Aaron Nelson; Secretary Steve Altmann and Past President Richard Pizitz, Jr. Other returning Board members are Linda Barstein, Fred Centor, Eddie Denaburg, Lisa Engel, Brooke Kaplan, Asher Kahn-Krell, Sheri Krell, Rick Roth, Steve Royal, Amy Saag, David Sher and Danielle Weintraub. 

The Foundation and related fund currently have assets of $30 million, with another approximately $30 million in future commitments. In 2019, the foundation made grants of almost $1.9 million, with another $700,000 in 2020 thus far.
Birthright Israel has grown from 9,000 annual participants in 1999 to reaching 45,777 participants in 2019.
Birthright Israel's New Reality and Funding
Birthright Israel’s goal is to strengthen the Jewish people by building identity and connection through a
peer-group educational experience in Israel. The program has resulted in unmatched reach and impact throughout the world. Since inception, Birthright Israel has welcomed 750,000 young adults from 68 countries.

Birthright Israel recognizes the challenges that the Jewish community is facing during these very difficult times and understands the huge burden being placed on the Federation system. They also know that our partners believe as we do that every eligible young Jewish adult should have a spot available when they are ready to claim their birthright. The Israel-World Jewry Bureau of The BJF contributes funding to this important organization.

Don't miss special sessions for Israel's Hebrew Book Week, an incredible mentalist, a writing workshop and more great Zooms!
Check Out Virtual Programs from The Jewish Agency for Israel
The Jewish Agency for Israel is one of many organizations The Birmingham Jewish Federation helps fund through our yearly allocations process. Our Shlichim (Israeli emissaries) have another week of interesting virtual sessions for you to join! Don't miss special sessions for Israel's Hebrew Book Week, an incredible mentalist, a writing workshop and more great Zooms!

Help us update our email lists!
Update Your BJF Email Preferences Now
The Birmingham Jewish Federation is proud to have different ways to reach out to our community. In order to be conscious of your time and to specifically tailor to your interests, we are asking for you to please choose which communications you would like to receive.

Community Programs & Announcements

AIPAC Birmingham Virtual Roundtable with Labriah Lee Holt
Wednesday, June 24 at 12:00 pm. AIPAC invites you to participate in a Virtual Roundtable featuring AIPAC’s National Outreach Director, African American Constituency, Labriah Lee Holt. Labriah will reveal AIPAC’s recent work with the African American constituency and answer your questions about broadening the pro-Israel movement. For more information or help with registering please contact Deryn Sousa at or (202) 271-5388.

Bearing Witness: Stories of the Holocaust
T hursday, June 25 from 7:00-8:30 pm via Zoom. Bearing Witness: Stories of the Holocaust – “Jack Bass: Charmer, Comedian, Friend”. Jack was imprisoned at Auschwitz III/ Buna, Auschwitz I, Dachau, and Mühldorf. And yet despite his terrifying youth and loss of family, he retained a wonderful sense of humor, love of music, and joie de vivre. Join Ann Mollengarden, BHEC Education Coordinator, as we meet Jack and learn from his life experiences. Register here

An Orthodox Rabbi Goes to Quantico: Stories of Spiritually Grounding the FBI
Thursday, July 2 at 7:00 pm via Zoom. Join Knesseth Israel with special presenter Rabbi Cary Friedman and hear stories from the programs he runs with the FBI and law enforcement all across the country to spiritually ground the officers so they can perform their duties more compassionately and effectively. Rabbi Cary's background is Jewish but he presents his material to them in a way that reaches people of all backgrounds. Watch here (Password is 906863)

Havdallah on the Deck
Saturday, July 4 at 7:00 pm at Temple Emanu-El. Bring your chairs and snacks to watch the 2020 Fourth of July fireworks show from the Temple Emanu-El parking deck! Havdallah followed by schmoozing until the fireworks show.
Support our Local Agencies and Synagogues with Amazon Smile
Amazon Smile, a website operated by Amazon lets customers enjoy the same wide selection of products, low prices, and convenient shopping features as on The difference is that when customers shop on AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases to the charitable organizations selected by customers. Please visit: If you have an existing account, you use the same account on AmazonSmile. All of our Birmingham agencies and synagogues are listed on Amazon Smile and you may choose one of them as the beneficiary of your purchases.