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.


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Founder and Publisher of Jewlicious, David Abitbol lives in Jerusalem with his wife, newborn daughter and toddler son. Blogging as "ck" he's been blocked on twitter by the right and the left, so he's doing something right.


  • ok great. now all we need is for someone to send us $25,000 and everything will be fine!

  • Oh, come on ck, that should be a cinch. Right?

    I mean, he only got twice as many votes as the next person in the Jewish Heroes contest, with 92,000 votes, and he was now counted as someone influential in US Jewish life. So, of course, there must be people in the organized community who will be supportive, right?

    I mean, there must be Jewish communal leaders out there who are trying to connect with young Jews and find solutions for the issues plaguing our community with respect to those Jews who feel disconnected, right?

    And all of these communal leaders now know that R.Yonah Bookstein is doing something effective, unique and important, right?

    They must be falling all over themselves to support Bookstein’s projects, right?