Getting Keyed Up With Inspiring Keynotes
Our keynote speakers at the 2019 JCCs of North America Professional Conference will provide a fresh perspective to inspire you in the most unexpected ways.
Sunday, Feb. 24
Judaism has been around for thousands of years, so it’s obviously working for some people—but not for everyone. And the folks at jewbelong.com think they get why: With all the rules and rituals, the Hebrew reading and chanting, it can be tricky to find all the richness, joy and spirituality at the heart of the religion.
JewBelong, like JCCs, is open and accepting, and focuses on loving being Jewish, however you choose to do that. JewBelong was created to help people make Judaism their own. It’s filled with easy-to-follow, fun, touching, humorous and always non-intimidating content. Founders Archie Gottesman and Stacy Stuart are the women behind Manhattan Mini Storage’s iconic billboards and they figured if they could rebrand something as boring as self-storage, then why not Judaism?
“Everyone wants meaning in their lives. If Jews don’t find it in their Judaism, they will find it at yoga,” says Archie. Why not help Jews find the meaning in Judaism? How amazing would it be if disengaged Jews saw their Judaism as a gift, and as something that will add beautiful connections in their lives?”
Israel as an Inspiration
Monday, Feb. 25
Israel is the eternal birthright of the Jewish people, linking us to our past and to Jews around the world today. As we wind up celebrating Israel@70 this year, we will continue to share the amazing, true stories of Israel’s brilliant, brazen and bold contributions to the world—and the reasons why it’s so important for us to be connected to the Jewish homeland.
Yotam Polizer, co-CEO of IsraAid, Israel’s humanitarian response to crises and our partner in JResponse, will share moving stories about the organization’s handling of emergencies all over the world and how they target their help. IsraAid was founded in 2001 to bring together Israeli and Jewish aid organizations with expertise in the fields required to provide humanitarian aid in the wake of a disaster. They want to build a world in which individuals, communities, and institutions have the resilience to navigate today’s crises and withstand tomorrow’s and live sustainably.
Chloé will share how she became passionate about Israel, and about her work defending and promoting the Jewish state. This journalist/activist is Christian, African American and a Zionist, born and raised in New Orleans. Chloe’s story includes lessons she learned from Israel about what it means to be a human being, be imperfect, yearn for things, build a society, overcome struggles, and teach others how to overcome them, as well.
Tuesday, Feb. 26
JCCs know the value of each staff member, but that knowledge and appreciation can be difficult to translate to front line staff, especially given the daily pressures and schedules your team members—many of whom have multiple roles— face each day.
Staffing— and staff— struggles in every department are the biggest obstacles to serving members and each other as a true community, as they cause lost time, lost knowledge, and mounting frustration in the very people we want most to support. Dr. Deborah Gilboa, in this insightful keynote, “Staff Resilience Means Staff Retention, and Success,” will focus on prevention, response, and reconciliation tools to build resilience in each staff member.
Addressing both the predictable and the unimaginable stressors faced by anyone in our community can be mitigated and managed with respect for the individual and the department in which they work. These strategies will leave each you and your team, strong in the knowledge that your contributions are crucial—both to the health and wellbeing of the JCC members in your care and to the mission of your JCC.
Creating a Culture of Respect
Wednesday, Feb. 27
Workplace harassment is one of the most destructive issues of our time. It’s important to recognize the different forms takes and how it can present itself in seemingly innocuous ways from jokes and innuendo, to pictures, thoughtless comments and more.
In addition to the significant costs and legal liability associated with such conduct, it creates a broad destructive impact on staff morale and impedes their ability to do their jobs. Jessica Golden Cortes, a partner specializing in labor and employment law at Davis and Gilbert LLP, New York, in an interactive keynote presentation will walk us all through what it means to create a safe, equitable and respectful workplace, where differences are valued—and how this adds value to your JCC as a respectful workplace.