I am not making this up. "Rise and Shine" might be the perfect anthem for a number of communities. And I don't mean to suggest in any way that a person who has been a Camp Director for 11 years isn't the perfect CEO match with one of the largest and most vibrant Jewish communities in North America. After all, as JFNA described him, Eric Robbins is: "A gifted relationship builder and an active Jewish communal lay leader."*
"Eric has been the Executive Director at Camp Twin Lakes since September, 2005. Based in Atlanta, Eric oversees all staff and operations of Camp Twin Lakes and works closely with the Board of Directors to set goals and implement CTL's strategic plan. His favorite camp song is "Rise and Shine," and he has fond memories of hiking the Appalachian Trail when he was a camper. In addition to children's camps, he has also directed a camp for senior citizens."
So, I was thinking...I was a great camper at Ramah in Wisconsin for 7 years, matriculating to running the dishwashing operation there for another two years. No one contracted food poisoning (to my knowledge) while I ran the dishwashing equipment. I loved Camp Ramah. My favorite song was "Am Yisrael Chai." I was a scholarship recipient; and constantly felt thereafter the imperative to give back.
I know that my experiences in leadership roles with the Jewish federation movement, the United Jewish Appeal, the Jewish Agency for Israel, the UIA and the JDC will be obstacles to consideration of my playing a professional leadership role in federation life but I believe that I can convince the Search Committee to ignore this handicap to my candidacy (and my Blogging) and look, instead, at my camping experiences (and dishwashing success) and my favorite song. The thought that successful Federation experience is now disqualifying is anathema to me...and, I know, to you.
But I recognize that I am behind the curve. After all, look at the serial successes of those from the Camping movement who have been parachuted into CEO positions -- there was that leader of D.C. Camps who lasted close to two years as CEO in Palm Beach. And, of course, there is the paradigm who is Jerry Silverman -- we all know his lack of any accomplishments. I guess these guys leadership experiences recommend a Camp background as a condition precedent to becoming Federation CEO today.
Thus, my kippah will be in the ring for the next LCE job opening. After all, the logical step in federation professional leadership is to go from professionals with experience in the federation movement, to a leader of the Foundation for Camp, to Camp directors -- doesn't even have to have been Jewish camps any more -- to me, a graduate of Camp Ramah in Wisconsin (and its dish room) even though those years were a few years ago. Yeah, just a few years past.
So, DRG or Mandel or whoever...just give me a call.
In the meantime, all together now:
Rise and shine and Give God the glory, glory...Children of the LordRwexler
* I checked the Board of Trustees roster for the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta -- Eric is not a Trustee; so, perhaps, his communal lay service was elsewhere. An Anonymous Commentator below has informed us of a list of his communal roles