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Global Center for Jewish Leadership

Global Center for Jewish Leadership

Several years ago, we set an audacious goal: To make Spertus Institute’s Center for Jewish Leadership the global center for Jewish leadership training. 

We sought to empower Jewish communal professionals with the knowledge, skills, and tools to make significant impact, both within and beyond the Jewish community. Why? To ensure that Jewish organizations have the flexibility and capacity to serve community needs in our rapidly changing world.

Today we are proudly on our way.

Spertus students and alumni serve Jewish organizations of every size and description, in our hometown of Chicago, and—without exaggeration or hyperbole—around the world. 

Lists, however, only tell part of the story. So we brought together some local alumni and students to share the impact of their work.

Caleb Bromberg, pictured far left in the image above, is a current student in Spertus Institute's MA in Jewish Professional Studies (MAJPS) program. As the Youth Engagement & Curriculum Coordinator at Temple Sholom Chicago, where he shapes the Jewish educational experience of tomorrow’s young adults. A current MAJPS student, his love for Jewish learning is contagious. He has been researching education trends and adapting them to a Jewish context, adding a social justice focus, and reinvigorating how Hebrew is taught. Out with workbooks, in with participatory learning!

Joelle Swatez, pictured second from left in the image above, is a current MAJPS student. She is passionate about weaving Jewish meaning into the ways people live. As Director of Development and Operations at University of Chicago Hillel, she helps students build Jewish lives on campus. Before stepping into this new role, this current Spertus student fed the hungry and nourished their spirits as the JUF Uptown Café Coordinator (part of the EZRA Multi-Service Center).

Lauren Silverman, pictured second from right in image above, is a current MAJPS student who serves as Senior Young Adult Engagement Associate at the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago. She helps recent college grads, Birthright Israel alumni, and young Jewish adults find connection—to each other and to the Jewish community.

Miriam Brosseau, MAJPS 2012, pictured far right in image above, is an alum of the very first cohort of Spertus Institute’s MA in Jewish Professional Studies. Today this creative communications strategist is Principal of Tiny Windows Consulting, training nonprofit professionals and crafting ways for Jewish organizations to shine light on their stories. Recent clients include JFNA, the URJ, UW-Madison Hillel, and Spertus Institute.

Tani Prell EpsteinTani Prell Epstein, MAJPS student, is Emanuel Congregation’s Director of Jewish Learning and Engagement. She was recently selected for the Union for Reform Judaism’s JewV’Nation Fellowship, a program that invests in leadership development for Jews of color. This summer will be her second on faculty at the URJ’s specialty camp, the Creative Arts Academy.


Misha VilenchukMisha Vilenchuk, MAJPS student, knows a few things about global Jewry, having been born in Russia and lived around the world. While still in college, he founded CAASE, a student-led social movement to combat European Antisemitism, and serving as Chairman of the Union of American Jewish Students. In a perfect match for his expertise, he now creates transformative experiences for traveling Jewish students at KAHAL: Your Jewish Home Abroad.

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Image left, from left Caleb Bromberg, Joelle Swatez, Lauren Silverman, and Miriam Brosseau. Photo by Aleya Cydney Photography.

Ellie Gettinger

Jewish Leadership From
Milwaukee to Moscow

Ellie Gettinger, MAJPS 2017, is the Education Director of the Jewish Museum Milwaukee. As a student in Spertus Institute's graduate program for Jewish professionals, she added new knowledge to her already considerable expertise. She spoke with us about her participation in this unique program and the impact it’s had on the Milwaukee community. READ MORE >

Kaplan Leadership Seminar at Spertus InstituteYoung Leaders Come to Chicago From as Far Away as Moscow for Global Jewish Leadership Seminar

Spertus Institute is thrilled to offer the Kaplan Leadership Initiative's Global Jewish Leadership Seminar in partnership with the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). Shown above are Jon Zecharia, Events and Communications Manager, Westminster Synagogue, London, and Kirill Sahmanov, Regional Development Director, Hillel Moscow. READ MORE >