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Executive Excellence

Executive Excellence

Spertus Welcomes the Inaugural Cohort of
the Executive MA in Jewish Professional Studies

Many in the Jewish Community have long recognized that the dearth of trained leaders is a great challenge in Jewish organizational life. This is particularly true at the executive level, where, for a variety of reasons, adequate training and professional development opportunities are often difficult to come by. Yet research shows that investment in leadership development pays dividends. The Executive MAJPS program is tailored to fill this void.

The participants in this inaugural cohort represent organizations in Chicago, Cleveland, New Jersey, New York, Ontario, and Washington, DC. They are studying with experts from around the world who understand both the theory and practice of leading in today’s highly complex Jewish world. Together, they are gaining the expertise to anticipate community needs and opportunities, inspire excellence in staff and trustees, and face new challenges from positions of strength.

To accommodate the time demands faced by executives, the curriculum is delivered through a blend of onsite seminars and online modules. The program includes leadership assessment, executive coaching, and an individual project tailored to the needs of participants’ own workplaces.

The program began with a two-day seminar titled This American Jewish Life, taught by one of the preeminent scholars of contemporary Jewry, Dr. Steven M. Cohen.

Dr. Cohen is the Research Professor of Jewish Social Policy at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion and Director of the Berman Jewish Policy Archive at Stanford University. A noted sociologist, he was the lead researcher on the Jewish Community Study of New York and a consultant to the recently conducted Pew study of American Jews.

The second seminar, The Role of Israel in Jewish Life, was taught by Dr. Rachel Fish, Associate Director of Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University.

Spertus congratulates the participants in this unprecedented program, who realize that professional growth is imperative for those who lead the Jewish world of today and tomorrow.

To find out more about the next cohort of the Executive MAJPS program,
contact Tal Rosen, Director of the Center for Jewish Leadership,
at or 312.322.1711.

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Front row, left to right:

Ariella Saperstein, Israel Program Officer, The Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust, New York, NY

Katie Rich, Director of Admissions and Community Engagement, Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School, Chicago, IL

Salina Greene, Asylum Officer, US Department of Homeland Security, Washington, DC

Aya Inbar Shechter, Israeli Center Director, Kaplan JCC on the Palisades, Tenafly, NJ

Back row, left to right:

Genevieve Gandal, Director, Chicago Region, Jewish National Fund

Michael Soberman, Senior Educational Consultant and Director of the iFellows Masters Concentration in Israel Education, The iCenter for Israel Education, Toronto, Canada and Chicago, IL

Cindy Sher, Executive Editor, JUF News, Chicago, IL

Gilon Rubanenko, Chief Operating Officer, Mandel Jewish Community Center, Beachwood, OH

Marna Goldwin, Director of Advancement, Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School, Chicago, IL

"The biggest challenge in Jewish life today is finding good leadership for tomorrow." —Leadership Pipelines Initiative

Guided by Jewish wisdom and history, the Executive MAJPS builds on Spertus Institute's highly regarded Master of Arts in Jewish Professional Studies, but its content and design is specifically for those leading Jewish organizations to successfully serve, enrich, and perpetuate the Jewish community.