As I said in a past post, all DC organizations of note have an annual meeting in spring or early summer. The mothership of Jewish DC — The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington (JFGW) — is no exception. On Monday, June 11, JFGW will host its 2012 Annual Meeting at the Carnegie Institute For Science. The evening will roll three programs into one: a series of speakers with a keynote address by Ambassador Michael B. Oren; an award ceremony for Rachel Cohen Gerrol, Jeremy Rosen, and Avi West; and a presentation of the ConnectGens Fellows. Doors open at 6:45 PM; the program starts at 7:15 PM. Go here to register.
SR: About how many people are going to show up to this?
Sarah Arenstein, Director of Young Leadership, JFGW (SA): More than 250 people have already registered.
SR: How much does it cost to attend?
SA: It’s free and open to anyone in the community who wants to hear about how Federation has enriched the community during the past year.
SR: Do you know what Ambassador Oren will speak about?
SA: Unfortunately, we have just been informed that Ambassador Oren has been called away on official embassy business and will be unable to join us at the Annual Meeting on Monday. Because Israel is so important to us, we want to make sure it continues to hold an important place at this year’s meeting and therefore, Rob Satloff, Executive Director of the Washington Institute will deliver the keynote address highlighting the three biggest things facing Israel today and what we as Jews in Greater Washington can do to help.
SR: Who else will speak?
SA: Stuart Kurlander, President; Steve Rakitt, Executive Vice President and CEO; Eva Davis, Nathan Bortnick, Yvonne Distenfeld, and Alan Meltzer – Annual Meeting Co-Chairs
SR: Tell me about the Jerome J. Dick Young Leadership Award. How many years has this been given out for? How are the recipients selected? What comes with the award? I assume I was third place for the award?
SA: The Jerome J. Dick Young Leadership Award has been given out for 43 years to individuals in their early forties, or younger, in recognition of their dedication to the Jewish community and capacity for leading and motivating people. Recipients of this award have gone on to become major players in the Greater Washington Jewish community. A full list of recipients can be found here: http://www.shalomdc.org/page.
SR: We interviewed last year’s recipient (Kevin Fishkind) here.
SR: What will the ConnectGens fellows do for their presentation? And where can we get a list of the projects?
SA: The ConnectGens Fellows will each deliver a short, 15-second pitch during the Annual Meeting. The idea is to peak the audience’s interest so that they will join us for a dessert reception and Innovation Expo immediately following the meeting, where they will have the opportunity to talk one-on-one with the Fellows to learn more about their exciting concepts.
Brief bios of the Fellows, along with descriptions of each of their ventures, are listed at www.shalomdc.org/2012fellows.
SR: Why should young adults go this event?
SA: Thousands of young adults in our community have attended events sponsored by The Jewish Federation, but that’s only a small piece of what we do. It’s important for young adults to see Federation on the macro level and understand the integral role it plays in our Jewish community. Federation provides so many opportunities for young adults to connect and grow as leaders, and part of that is understanding how and why. The Annual Meeting is one of the few times Federation donors and volunteers of all ages come together for an evening to celebrate what we have accomplished during the year. This year, we are taking it to another level with the integration of the ConnectGens Fellowship Launch Night! There has been a lot of buzz in our community about the 10 Fellows and the ventures they have been working on over the past few months. This is their moment to shine and show them their community is behind them!