Thursday, May 22, 2014


There is so much wrong, such a mess, a balagan, one can only cite "highlights" while the JFNA lay leadership hears no evil, sees no evil and speaks not at all (unless there's a microphone and a script):

  1. It took a Comment to a Post on the most recent failed TribeFest to spot the total futility of what has become an annual travesty. That Comment noted that the heroic young adults at the University of New Mexico, who fended off a BDS attack, were subsidized participants in Festivus 3 as college students. It turned out that the "responsible" JFNA professionals who led TribeFest were doling out subsidies to college students. The original intended Fest audience, per JFNA, were unaffiliated young men and women -- the age of members of the convener  Young Leadership Cabinet. But, as JFNA could inspire no real interest by that group even with ads promoting Fest as a drinking "fun" thing, JFNA expanded the intended participation to affiliated young adults (including mostly YLC members) who would be heavily subsidized. Now, desperate for numbers -- college students were receiving subsidies. Remember -- these drinking social non-events have cost your federation and mine a total of $3 million (+) -- at any other organization, heads would roll; at JFNA...promotions. Let's have some transparency: how much in total subsidies were paid out and to whom; what age cohorts received subsidies; how many college students were subsidized; home many YLC members were subsidized; how many unaffiliated? Etc. We will never be told, fuggedaboutit.
  2. Then there is the 2014 Campaign Chairs/Directors Mission, once the annual crown jewel of a series of UJA fund raising Missions. Fully-subsidized, these Missions, begun in the mid-90's when I served as UJA National Chair, they infused the federation campaigns with knowledge, passion and inspiration for those who would lead the annual campaigns. This year, not only has the subsidy been reduced to $1500, the venue has been changed in a most curious way. Originally set for St. Petersburg, where the Jewish Agency and Joint run inspirational programs and Jewish activity and daily life are full, the venue was changed to...Greece. Yes, a prime vacation spot with a Jewish population estimated at less than 5,000, with a JDC presence, as opposed to a thriving City with a Jewish population of well over 100,000 with the constant daily activities of a vibrant community. Who made the decision to move the venue? Who demanded the change? The same people who run TribeFest? A Comment below supports the conclusion that Greece may be the most inappropriate place for our communal leaders to visit as Greece is the most anti-semitic country in the world!! Yet, there they go.*
Look, there is so much more...but...have you ever see an organization in greater need of adult supervision and leadership?


* I have heard a rumor that one of the "major" LCE "demanded" the change of venue for the Mission. No one knows why; nor, it would appear, is there any rational reason for having done so. Yet, JFNA's CEO passed the word without ever challenging it. This example, if true, suggests why the LCE as a group and individually have been silent on the extension of CEO Jerry's contract: he is the ultimate made-as-instructed "professional." If an influential LCE tells Mr. Silverman to jump, he doesn't even ask "how high?" before leaving the ground.


Anonymous said...

....and these lay leaders are going to extend the contract of the professional leading this joke of an organization? We know what's wrong with him; what is wrong with them?

Anonymous said...

Why would an LCE "demand" the change in venue?

1. His President wants to buy a shipping line or football team in Greece? (not likely but would be funny)

2.A backdoor request from someplace that promised the recently Israel friendly Greek government that they would promote Jewish tourism and investment in that country's near bankrupt economy? After all the overwhelming number of Greeks believe we serve Israel's bidding and control the world's economy - right?

Facetiousness and intrigue aside, the bottom line in most of these kind of cases is that someone at JFNA or the LCE in question promised someone something that they could not deliver - hence the temper tantrum on the part of the LCE.

Anonymous said...

Not certain, but a Large City CEO may have objected to St. Petersburg (security, Putin, who knows) or may have just wanted to throw his weight around; didn't care where the Mission ended up.