Monday, January 8, 2018


How long will the federations (forget  about the JFNA Chair, Vice-Chair, Executive Committee and Board) allow JFNA to skate along on the successes of the Washington Office and a periodic dip into disaster relief success? Apparently...forever.

The litany of failures needn't be repeated any more -- everyone knows them, even the most ardent supporters of Silverman and his ilk -- the JFNA claque as it were -- know them; they just choose to ignore them. Hell, the argument must go, the federations still pay full Dues, don't they?

Any one who reads this Blog regularly knows that I can't abide Caroline Glick's politics, but she sure can turn a phrase. It was Glick who recently wrote: about what she called the: “defiant rejection of observable reality. Although she was writing of a different reality, the defiant rejection of observable reality is exactly what JFNA's "leaders" engage in 24/7.

Stating the obvious, JFNA has hit the rocks; the only problem with that reality is that it does a disservice to rocks. The Washington grants and  disaster relief tides haven't been sufficient in any way to float the organization off those rocks -- not at all.

Its professional leader has weaponized information with the apparent constant support (or continuing ignorance of reality) of the Board Chair:

    ~ Expenses
    ~ Consulting agreements
    ~ Excluding all but “voting Board members” from meetings on an ad hoc basis

When will this end? Apparently...never.

I asked a friend who has had leadership roles within JFNA, after my reading of a recent set of questions posed by federation professionals to their fellows in FedCentral: "Does JFNA do anything?" The response was telling: "Well...They run the GA to show the world that they do things. Like run the GA." Yep, JFNA.

I don’t doubt that JFNA’s leaders want a successful organization, they know that the organization is a failure.  Yet, there is no price being paid for failure; just the opposite. Dues are paid; the CEO continues to be paid as if he and the organization were incredibly successful; the organization has no focus; JFNA-Israel continues, as it has for a decade, without success (I'm certain the explanation at 25 Broadway for ignoring the need for change in Jerusalem today -- in the totality of the JFNA-Israel operation -- is:"we can't change now, we have the GA in Israel next year." This ignores the reality that on a number of prior occasions Israel GAs have been administered from New York HQ).

The New York Times Magazine recently devoted its First Words to the concept and construct of “loyalty.” (November 19, 2017) Loyalty as both a “virtue” and, sometimes. a curse. And, friends, loyalty is admirable— but loyalty to a fault, loyalty without accountability, is a recipe for total failure. And that’s where JFNA is today...




Anonymous said...

Why do you presume that JFNA's leaders want a successful organization? There is no evidence that they even care, If they truly wanted a successful JFNA they would begin by demanding that Jerry Silverman be bought out of the remainder of his contract, and then an exceptional interim CEO hired (how about you, Richard???) and a serious search for a new CEO begun. Instead, neither JFNA's Board and-or Vice Chair, nor its Executive Committee, nor its Board, nor the federation CEOs give any evidence that they are even awake.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever seen JFNA/Silverman/Sandler take responsibility for anything? When it's all (or almost all) bad, they stick their heads in the sand and just wish the problems go away. They disappear. They remind me of the Tinkerbell in the Trudeaux comics. They are not there for the federations, not there for us.The speeches and inetrviews they give reflect the disconnect from reality that demeans the federation system. They are, singly and together, a sad sad joke.

Anonymous said...

Do you think that after a decade of Posts you are going to be able to wake the dead? I mean, that's whatyou've got -- a bunch of mummies and dummies at the very top and the eternal silent on the Board. They have absolutely no interest in any form of accountability -- in fact because the professionals are not held accountable whatsoever, they have been given carte blanche to do whatever they want with no consequences for constant degrading and depressing failure. No one knows what the Israel Office does or even what that over-populated office is supposed to be doing; FRD appears to just be the department where FRD goes to die, the elephant graveyard of JFNA; the GA is a joke, even more so to those of us who attend year-in and year-out hoping for anything of value to show that the $1000's we invest annually has some worth.Yes,the Washington Grants work has value but that's it.

We are all at fault.

Anonymous said...

Where's Accountability? Nowhere, not for a decade. Do a succession of Board Chairs have any idea what their fiduciary obligations are to the Board members, to the owners? Do they have to be reminded that they are not some form of independent actors but are, instead, responsible to the federations that own JFNA and fund it? These mopes think they aren't responsible to anyone.