Friday, November 4, 2011

United Synagogue November eNews

eNews: Electronic Bulletin - The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism

November 2011


It's just a month away! From December 1 to December 4, United Synagogue's leaders and friends with gather in San Diego for Kallah 2011. We'll learn, sing, talk, think, feel, and share the joy of Shabbat with each other, and to learn skills to bring home to our own kehillot. And as part of the celebration of USY's 60th anniversary, we'll honorJackie Saltz that Saturday night, after havdalah. It's not too late to decide to join us.

New Ideas

Alim - Helping a Kehilla Evolve - One of the new United Synagogue's most pressing mandates is to work with new, emerging, or evolving kehillot. Here's the story of one such partnership.

What's New for You

Meet Our New Relationship Managers - As our new system of developing relationships with each of our kehillot continues to unfold, we are glad to announce that we've completed our team of kehilla relationship mangers. Please meet our two newest KRMs.

Nadine Kochavi is the senior KRM for Metny, the district that encompasses New York City's five boroughs and many of its suburbs. Nadine comes to us from Congregation Rodeph Sholom, a prominent Reform synagogue in Manhattan, where she was membership coordinator; she's enjoyed her experience there, recruiting, engaging, and retaining members, but she's glad to return to the Conservative world in which she grew up. She has a bachelor's degree from the State University of New York at Albany and a master's in public administration from Baruch College, where she concentrated in nonprofit administration.
Aimee Close, the senior KRM for the Northeast district, is a lifelong Bostonian who has been both a professional and a lay leader in Conservative synagogues in the greater Boston area. As a former membership director for the JCCs of Greater Boston and a synagogue executive director in Cambridge, she brings years of experience in membership recruitment and retention and in customer service to her new role. Aimee lives in Sharon, Massachusetts, with her son, Ariel, and is an active member of Temple Israel there.

CJ Is On Its Way - The latest issue of CJ: Voices of Conservative/Masorti Judaism is due in your mailbox the week of November 21. Read about women rabbis, a bat mitzvah project in a Chinese orphanage, Jewish life in the Caribbean, bnai anousim in New Mexico, and so much more.

MicroGrants for Outreach to Young Adults - Our strategic plan stresses the importance of reaching out to young adults, who after all are our future. We are thrilled to be able to offer grants of up to $3,500 to kehillot that provide resources and engagement opportunities to 22- to 35-year-olds. Hurry – the application deadline is November 15.

Could Your Kehillah Use Help Launching a Leadership Program? - Sulam for Current Leaders provides a toolkit that helps you to plan around issues of leadership, delegation, and accountability. It explores the managerial challenges of volunteer and staff relationships, as well as the visionary aspects that make synagogue leadership special and sacred. Rabbi Charles Savenor and Bob Levanthal of the Alban Institute will lead a webinar exploring the program on Wednesday, November 16, at noon eastern time (that's 1 p.m. Atlantic, 11 a.m. central, 10 a.m. mountain, and 9 a.m. Pacific time). The webinar will be held again at 7:30 p.m. eastern time that day (and of course that's 8:30 Atlantic, 6:30 central, 5:30 mountain, and 4:30 Pacific, all p.m.). Register now; we'll send you call-in information by November 15.

Schechter Schools' New Website - The Solomon Schechter Day School Network's lovely new website offers prospective students and their parents the information they need to make the vitally important decision about where to go to school; its private section offers Schechter professionals and lay leaders materials, background, and support.


Educators Workshops in Oakland - Our educational consultants, Wendy Light and Susan Wyner, go to Oakland, California, in mid-November to offer workshops to help teachers in Jewish institutions and educational leadersconfront the challenges they face.

Celebrate USY@60 in New York at Citi Field - On Sunday, November 20, our Metny region will celebrate USY's 60th birthday, honor Bruce Varon, and remember Bob Perla by launching a youth fund in his name. Email Wendy Glick for more information.

We Want Your Art! - Next year's calendar will showcase art from our affiliated kehillot. If there is something particularly beautiful in your synagogue – an object, a structural element, an angle where the light comes in – send us a photograph and we will be glad to consider it for the 2012/2013 5773 calendar. Email images to Joanne Palmer. The deadline is November 30.

United Synagogue Kallah - We take what used to be the biennial convention and make it into a kallah – an unconventional convention – as we gear up toward Shabbat and then celebrate it with joy, spirit, heart, and mind on December 1 through 4 in San Diego, California. Please join us!

Honoring Jackie Saltz - As part of USY's 60th birthday celebrations, we honor Jackie Saltz in San Diego on December 3, the Saturday night of our convention.

Hazak Is Going to Israel - Hazak, for people 55 and older – often much older! – is kicking off a new, much more active trip to Israel, with an exciting new itinerary. The trip is set for December 11 to December 22, 2011. Join us! Email Jo-Anne Tucker-Zemlak for information.

USY's International Convention - From Sunday, December 25, to Thursday, December 29, USYers will get together in Philadelphia with incredible ruach, curiosity, and joy to celebrate the organization's 61st international convention.

North American Day School Conference - Educational leaders from across the Jewish world, including representatives of the Schechter Day School Network, will gather in Atlanta from January 15-17 for the annual North American Day School Conference.

Koach Kallah - Koach, our college program, invites college students to Boston University from February 23 to February 26 for the 2012 Koach kallah. Rabbi Jane Kanareck, assistant professor of rabbinics at Hebrew College, will be there; the weekend will focus on high-quality, accessible learning, skills training, and leadership development, and of course Shabbat will be filled with music, talk, high spirits, spirited davening, and joy. This year, the kallah is made possible by the generous support of the Women's League for Conservative Judaism.

From the Conservative Yeshiva

Summer Program - Registration for the summer program at the Conservative Yeshiva at United Synagogue'sFuchsberg Jerusalem Center is open. We offer two three-week session, one beginning July 1, the other July 22. Learn Hebrew, study texts, and enjoy the city! We are introducing the volunteer and study option – learn for half the day, and volunteer with Jerusalem-area organizations the other half.

Scholarships for the Conservative Yeshiva's year program still are available. Come for the Yeshiva's spring semester, which begins January 4, and experience the joy of talmud Torah in Jerusalem.

Feel free to email for information about any of the Conservative Yeshiva's programs.


USY International Convention - This December, Philadelphia will host the 61st annual USY convention. It will include a musical salute to USY's 60th anniversary, Chanukah candlelighting, discussions about derech eretz (ethical behavior), social activities, leadership sessions, social action programs, a talk from Marc Elliot, music from a cappella group Six13, and much more. USYers, talk to your regional USY office, look on the web, or email us for more information.

Early Bird Registration - If your teenager wants to join us in one of our life-altering summer programs, which go to the glaciers of Alaska or to sun-soaked Israel, to the depths of the Grand Canyon or the top of Masada, register now and lock in the early bird 2011 price. It's good until November 15. From then until December 31, you can save $100.

Nativ Opens a New Track - Nativ, USY's gap-year leadership program in Israel, now offers a track in Kfar Hassidim Youth Village. You can get regular updates about Nativ 31's year in Israel on Twitter by following @nativisrael. Nativ is accepting applications for the 2012-2013 school year.

From Our Book and Media Center

Autumn and winter give us more time to read, to think, and to create, as we curl up indoors, next to a fireplace (if we're lucky enough to have one). Here are some books with food for (Jewish) thought.

It's Never Too Late For a Luach - The secular year is drawing to a close, but the Jewish year is still young. Do you have your luach yet? If you buy one now, you can register for Luach Updates, an online information source that keeps you up to date.

Thank You from Project Reconnect

More than 300 kehillot across the world participated in Project Reconnect's High Holy Day program, Come Home For the Holidays. Project Reconnect is grateful to each one of them, and wants to express its gratitude publicly. Project Reconnect also is looking for stories from participating kehillot and the families who opened their homes this holiday season. Please send your stories to Daniel.

USY at 60

Save the Dates! - We will celebrate Jackie Saltz on December 3 in at Kallah 11 in San Diego, California as we mark USY's 60th anniversary.

We look forward to watching old friends reconnect, laugh, and remember as we raise scholarship funds to ensure USY's bright future.

Please join us at If you met your husband or wife at USY, please share your story on Facebook – just enter "I Met My Spouse in USY" in the search box.

Jules Gutin - Now On Video! - Jules Gutin, USY's longtime director, was honored by USY@60 and a legion of his fans and admirers in late September. Here is the video that was shown at the celebration.

Celebrate USY@60 in New York at CitiField - On Sunday, November 20, our Metny region will celebrate USY's 60th birthday, honor Bruce Varon, and remember Bob Perla by launching a youth fund in his name. Email Wendy Glick for more information.

Around the Jewish World

New Bedford Shul Seeks Former Members - Tifereth Israel Congregation in New Bedford, Massachusetts, is turning 90! It's looking for former members and their descendants for a big birthday bash to celebrate chai times five in November. Email, call 508-997-3171, or write to 145 Brownell Avenue, New Bedford, MA 02740.

Around the Jewish World

Get A Job, Rambam! - Masorti, the organization that represents Conservative/Masorti kehillot in Israel, offers a copy of the poster that's taken non-haredi Israel bystorm. For just $11.95, you can have your very own copy.

Web Hosting

Take advantage of free Internet hosting services to affiliated synagogues, USY chapters, and afternoon/day schools. We now also can provide your synagogue with a free template CMS website.

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