The sadness we all felt at the news that Rabbi Yonah had not won the Jewish Community Heroes contest was significantly mitigated today with news that our Hero had been selected as a member of this year’s Forward 50 (!!). The exclamation points are there because I had no clue this was even a possibility. I had to find out about it after receiving a cryptic IM from Dan Brown of e-Jewish Philanthropy who then pointed me to his post on the subject.
In the decade and a half since, the dramatic shift in Jewish leadership mirrors larger trends in our society. Just as we no longer go one place for our news, we no longer look to only one powerful person in a position of authority for leadership. This year, in particular, we’ve seen some of the most established organizations questioned from the outside and challenged from within, while those who are creating and innovating seem to have history’s wind at their backs.