My Post last week -- DERELICTION...AT SO MANY LEVELS -- inspired many readers to write me off-line, either to recount their own experiences. to offer a reminder of a CJF-inspired effort back in the day, that had some limited success before it was shelved, and to suggest "you nailed it." What follows is a Comment offered by a "Mandel fellow" that, anonymously, tells it like it is.
"Anonymous has left a new comment on your post "DERELICTION...AT SO MANY LEVELS":
JFNA has failed miserably with CEO transitions...many more will be coming with communities thinking people outside the system are better than those inside. It is a flawed reaction and has proven unsuccessful in almost every case to date (I know that San Francisco looked at Mandel graduates, but chose to select someone from the outside -- and that lasted 14 months). Name more than one successful CEO (who has lasted beyond a three-year period) who has come from outside the field.
I was a member of the Mandel group and have watched my colleagues leave Federation. I have seen others be "sold a bill of goods" as JFNA encourages people to go to new communities. I believe right now only one member of our group is a current CEO (I hear only great things)...yet I wonder how many others even have that inclination. Plus, as a woman, I get the calls all the time that make me feel like my gender is more important than my interests or JFNA just filling an opening and being able to send out an email.
The system is flawed...the system is non-helpful...and the system does not know how to push forward with a cadre of Jewish communal professionals."
To me it is all so sad. JFNA is tone deaf, it never hears a negative note, it only accepts "positive feedback," and it fails to ever learn. And...and...we, the federations, just continue to throw money -- about $500 million of our precious resources to date -- into what is the true black hole. No accountability, nothing.
We ought to be ashamed of ourselves.