JFNA's new lay leadership team is going to get the credit for this one.
Hidden in a National News report in the December 4 Jewish Week was the announcement JFNA's TribeFest Event to Skip 2013. This actually belonged on the Obituary pages. As the professional leader of JFNA follows the mantra that one never apologizes for any mistake, the article was filled with hyperbole:
~ Just taking "a year off after successful events this year and last."
~ "Small leadership events in 2013" will integrate a couple of hundred Fest participants with "seasoned leaders" from the Young Leadership Cabinet.
~ And, the really big Festivus will be back in 2014 for those of you anxious for its return.
But between the lines of the Jewish Week story, JFNA's Joe Berkofsky, the in house flack always trotted out for glossing over events like this, revealed the failure that was Festivus. "He said 60% of participants at the first event and 30% at the second had never before attended a national federation event." And, therein is a striking failure -- for Fest was always designed for first timers, yet but 60% of the participants would be at that "first event;" and, in year two, the Fest was populated by Cabinet members and of the 1500 in attendance (JFNA's exaggerated count) only a meager 450 met the criterion.
Festivus was a disaster from conception through execution -- a costly failure that ultimately took top JFNA professionals from their more critical tasks to Las Vegas for the "Big Show." And it wasted financial resources on top of that -- close to $!,750,000 on...nothing.
Good for JFNA -- the Fest will not be missed.