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Social Justice [clear filter]
Friday, February 13
 

1:00pm EST

When Your Brother (or Sister) Sins: Judaism and Mass Incarceration
In the wake of Ferguson, revelations about abuses at Rikers Island and other prisons, and a growing awareness that mass incarceration is not making anyone safer, we've begun a national conversation about policing, imprisonment, and criminal justice. In this session, we'll consider if, when, and how imprisonment plays a role in the Jewish criminal justice system, and what that might teach us about mass incarceration in the United States today.

Presenters
JJ

Jill Jacobs

Jill Jacobs is the Executive Director of T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights, which brings a rabbinic moral voice to human rights in North America, Israel, and the occupied Palestinian territories. She is the author of two books about Judaism and social justice: Where Justice... Read More →


Friday February 13, 2015 1:00pm - 2:15pm EST
Elm

2:30pm EST

My Heart Transplant vs. Your Clean Water: Allocating Scarce Tzedakah Resources
Clearly, we have an obligation to feed the hungry; but with all the hunger in the world, how can we budget resources for cancer research and heart transplants? We’ll examine the Talmudic model of scarce resource allocation with an eye to creating a personal tzedakah-giving plan.

Presenters
MH

Meesh Hammer-Kossoy

Meesh Hammer-Kossoy teaches Talmud and directs the Social Justice Track at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem, an open, co-ed, non-denominational Jewish learning community where students encounter and grapple with classic texts and traditions of Judaism while exploring... Read More →


Friday February 13, 2015 2:30pm - 3:45pm EST
Waterside

8:45pm EST

'All Who Are Hungry, Let Them Come': Torah and the African Refugee Crisis
Israel is home to more than 50,000 African refugees, mostly from Sudan and Eritrea. Some see taking care of these refugees as a manifestation of our national identity. Others see it as a dangerous avalanche threatening to eclipse a struggling Jewish State. What can Jewish tradition contribute?

Presenters
MH

Meesh Hammer-Kossoy

Meesh Hammer-Kossoy teaches Talmud and directs the Social Justice Track at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem, an open, co-ed, non-denominational Jewish learning community where students encounter and grapple with classic texts and traditions of Judaism while exploring... Read More →


Friday February 13, 2015 8:45pm - 10:00pm EST
Willow
 
Saturday, February 14
 

11:30am EST

Ms. President: The Obligation for Women to Exercise Leadership
This session will explore rabbinic sources in order to open a discussion about the chiyuv (obligation) for women to exercise leadership in the Jewish community. We will also discuss the obligation of the community to empower women.

Presenters
SW

Sharon Weiss-Greenberg

Sharon is the executive director of JOFA (the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance). She has taught in a variety of schools and synagogues; served as the Orthodox adviser of Orthodox Union's Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus (OU JLIC) at Harvard Hillel; and was the Rosh Moshava (Head... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 11:30am - 12:45pm EST
Elm

12:15pm EST

When the Water Runs Out: Allocating Resources in a Desperate World
How do we manage scarce resources when the needs are so great? In this session, we will look at a set of provocative texts about a scarcity of water, and will also consider texts about how we balance competing priorities of geography, community, family, and more.

Presenters
JJ

Jill Jacobs

Jill Jacobs is the Executive Director of T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights, which brings a rabbinic moral voice to human rights in North America, Israel, and the occupied Palestinian territories. She is the author of two books about Judaism and social justice: Where Justice... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 12:15pm - 1:30pm EST
Aspen

1:45pm EST

Lethal Wives and Impure Widows
This session examines the widow marriage taboo in Jewish and Hindu law and lore through the lens of two religio-legal scholars and reformers who sought to alleviate the plight of widows who were made to suffer by lore being imposed as law. Our discussion will revolve around close text study—translated into English—from both traditions.

Presenters
SR

Shoshana Razel Gordon Guedalia

Shoshana Razel Gordon Guedalia is mother-writer-lecturer-sermonizer-activist-aspiring rabbi-student. Her “A Hike” on terror in Israel is a Pushcart nominee. Her work appears in lit reviews, Jewish journals, Keren journal & Dharma & Halacha. She taught soldiers who did not complete... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 1:45pm - 3:00pm EST
Waterside

1:45pm EST

Shechitah and Ethics: Is Kosher Slaughter 'Humane'?
Learn about the laws and practices of kosher slaughter with Naftali Hanau, shochet (kosher butcher) and owner of Grow and Behold Foods, which is providing Sunday night's chicken, hot dogs and hamburgers. What constitutes a kosher slaughter? Where do animal welfare and modern shechitah (kosher slaughter) practices intersect? There will be plenty of time for discussion and questions.

Presenters
NH

Naftali Hanau

Naftali Hanau is a founder and CEO of Grow and Behold Foods: Kosher Pastured Meats. He is passionate about producing and supplying kosher, sustainable, and ethical meat to the Jewish community. He is an Adamah alum and a trained shochet, and has a degree in Professional Horticulture... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 1:45pm - 3:00pm EST
Springdale

3:45pm EST

Heavenly Jerusalem, Earthly Jerusalem
Jerusalem has always been a place of deep emotions, tensions, and often violence. Today, these dynamics have a major impact on the possibilities for peace. We will examine some classic texts about Jerusalem in light of the contemporary political reality.

Presenters
JJ

Jill Jacobs

Jill Jacobs is the Executive Director of T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights, which brings a rabbinic moral voice to human rights in North America, Israel, and the occupied Palestinian territories. She is the author of two books about Judaism and social justice: Where Justice... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 3:45pm - 5:00pm EST
Waterside

5:15pm EST

Starting a Jewish Giving Circle
Are you intrigued by the idea of starting a giving circle inspired by Jewish values, but don’t know how to get started? Join staff from Amplifier: The Jewish Giving Circle Movement and the Natan Fund for a how-to session that will include interactive brainstorming to develop your vision for your giving circle, a discussion of Jewish wisdom around giving and giving together, and some concrete first steps to get a successful circle off the ground.

Presenters
FH

Felicia Herman

Felicia Herman has been the executive director of The Natan Fund, a giving circle of young philanthropists supporting Jewish and Israeli social innovation, since 2005. She is a frequent commentator on topics such as funding innovation, new trends in Jewish life, and the power of the... Read More →
AS

Aviva Stampfer

Aviva Stampfer works at Natan as the Program Assistant on Amplifier. She helped coordinate the co-design process and project implementation, including the website build and program creation. Aviva believes in the power of collaborative grantmaking and thinks that everyone can be a... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 5:15pm - 6:15pm EST
Waterside

7:30pm EST

Speaking of Names...
What's in a name? People consider changing names for marriage, but also sometimes to outrun bad luck, or to conceal Jewish identity. Converts to Judaism are often "given" a Hebrew name. There is tremendous power in naming, and sometimes our names reveal more about ourselves than we would like. Come to a facilitated Lilith salon to talk about it all.

Presenters
SW

Susan Weidman Schneider

Susan is Editor-in-Chief of Lilith and one of its founding mothers. Her writing includes innovative reports on women and philanthropy, the Jewish stake in reproductive rights, and persistent stereotypes of Jewish women. She is the author of three acclaimed books, including the groundbreaking... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 7:30pm - 8:45pm EST
Willow

9:45pm EST

The Great Jewish Paradox of Our Time: Power and Vulnerability
Jews have never been more powerful, prosperous and influential. At the same time, we have rarely been as vulnerable. Come and explore this great paradox of our time, and discuss the kind of leadership the Jewish People needs at this point in time.

Presenters
GG

Gidi Grinstein

Gidi Grinstein is the founder and president of The Reut Institute and the author of Flexigidity: The Invisible Hand of Jewish Adaptability. He served as secretary and coordinator of the Israeli delegation to the negotiations with the PLO between 1999-2001 under Ehud Barak. Gidi is... Read More →


Saturday February 14, 2015 9:45pm - 11:00pm EST
Elm
 
Sunday, February 15
 

8:30am EST

The Challenge of Power: How to Be a More Ethical Funder
Funding often follows the golden rule: S/he who has the gold makes the rules. Having taught thousands of philanthropists and foundation professionals, Richard Marker disagrees. He believes that most abuse of power by funders is not based on ego but on naïveté. This interactive session will use case vignettes to explore the intersection of best practice, ethics, and the law so that funders and those who want some can behave better, more ethically, and productively.

Presenters
RM

Richard Marker

Richard Marker is currently a philanthropy expert, professor, advisor, writer, and lecturer. He has been a university professor; a CEO and senior executive in the Jewish sphere; a foundation CE; a management consultant in the private secto; and a university chaplain. He has spent... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 8:30am - 9:45am EST
High Ridge

8:30am EST

The Triple Bottom Line: Creating a Sustainable Jewish Community
Explore how to make your Jewish community (synagogue, JCC etc), home and business more sustainable through pursuit of the Triple Bottom Line. The Triple Bottom Line doesn't compromise economics for the environment or social good (including the health of you and your children). The Triple Bottom Line seeks to maximize all three without negatively impacting any of them. Explore very practical approaches using real world examples that anyone can use for achieving the Triple Bottom Line.

Presenters
MB

Michael Brochstein

Michael Brochstein is a longtime Upper-West-Sider and member of Congregation Ansche Chesed. After a long career in information technology, he recently completed a master's degree in Sustainability Management and is now looking for related work. In his spare time Michael is an avid... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 8:30am - 9:45am EST
Springdale

10:00am EST

An Israeli Vision to Reverse Climate Change
Israel, a world flashpoint of innovation, can be a microcosm that shows us how to save the planet through advanced technologies and visionary implementation.

Made possible by funds from The Covenant Foundation. 

Presenters
YA

Yosef Abramowitz

One of CNN's top six Green Pioneers worldwide, Yosef Abramowitz is a co-founder of the solar industries in Israel and East Africa. A candidate for Israel’s presidency, he was named by the Jerusalem Post the 21st most influential Jew in the world and is a Covenant Award winner. He... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 10:00am - 11:15am EST
Springdale

3:00pm EST

Limmud NY Tzedekkah Fund: Make a $1000 Grant!
Giving feels good. Giving with others can feel even better! Giving circles are groups of people who pool their donations and decide together where to give them. Our pop-up giving circle gives you a taste of the giving-circle experience, and takes you through every step of the process in just 90 minutes! We'll explore your values, discover grant recipients, and decide together who should receive the grant. The grant budget comes from participants who opted to donate $2 during registration.

Presenters
FH

Felicia Herman

Felicia Herman has been the executive director of The Natan Fund, a giving circle of young philanthropists supporting Jewish and Israeli social innovation, since 2005. She is a frequent commentator on topics such as funding innovation, new trends in Jewish life, and the power of the... Read More →
AS

Aviva Stampfer

Aviva Stampfer works at Natan as the Program Assistant on Amplifier. She helped coordinate the co-design process and project implementation, including the website build and program creation. Aviva believes in the power of collaborative grantmaking and thinks that everyone can be a... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 3:00pm - 4:15pm EST
Long Ridge

3:00pm EST

Women Giving Money--Beyond the Stereotypes
The obligation to give tzedakah (charity) falls equally on women and men, but paths​ to giving are​ often quite different. Women earn money, inherit it, manage it, write checks to causes we care about, yet women’s philanthropy has been startlingly undervalued. ​How is the dynamic​ affected if the woman is using money that’s inherited? Spousal? Earned? The subject of Jews and money is often fraught. When gender is added to the mix, the conversation really gets interesting. Come to a Lilith salon to discuss!

Presenters
SW

Susan Weidman Schneider

Susan is Editor-in-Chief of Lilith and one of its founding mothers. Her writing includes innovative reports on women and philanthropy, the Jewish stake in reproductive rights, and persistent stereotypes of Jewish women. She is the author of three acclaimed books, including the groundbreaking... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 3:00pm - 4:15pm EST
Belltown

6:00pm EST

The Torah after Ferguson: Human Equality in the Bible
Ferguson has left much of our country shell-shocked, confused, and hopeless about race in America. In this session, we'll ask what the Torah says about human equality and discuss how its ideas could and should affect the way we conduct ourselves in the world. We'll accomplish this through close readings of texts from Genesis and Deuteronomy. Come with an openness to exploring inspiring, challenging, and unsettling ideas.

Presenters
SH

Shai Held

Shai Held is Co-Founder, Dean, and Chair in Jewish Thought at Mechon Hadar, and he directs its Center for Jewish Leadership and Ideas. He is a 2011 recipient of the Covenant Award for Excellence in Jewish Education and has been named multiple times to Newsweek’s list of the top... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 6:00pm - 7:15pm EST
Grove

8:15pm EST

The Modern Kosher Meat Industry
How delicious was tonight's dinner? Join Naftali Hanau, shochet (kosher butcher) and owner of Grow and Behold Foods, which provided the chicken, hamburgers and hot dogs at dinner tonight, for a discussion of the inner-workings of the kosher meat business. Topics include conventional animal production vs small-scale production, economics, kosher supervision, and social justice ramifications of meat production.

Presenters
NH

Naftali Hanau

Naftali Hanau is a founder and CEO of Grow and Behold Foods: Kosher Pastured Meats. He is passionate about producing and supplying kosher, sustainable, and ethical meat to the Jewish community. He is an Adamah alum and a trained shochet, and has a degree in Professional Horticulture... Read More →


Sunday February 15, 2015 8:15pm - 9:30pm EST
Willow
 
Monday, February 16
 

8:30am EST

What Would Moses Do?
The Torah has divided the Promised Land in an equitable manner and then used the mechanisms of shmita (sabbatical), yovel (jubilee), and go-eil (the redeemer) to keep it so. In this shmita year, we will discuss how relevant these mechanisms are to today's economy and what makes for a fair economy.

Presenters
CB

Chaim Bronstein

Chaim Bronstein is a retired high school teacher. Born in Paris, France, he was raised on an ultra-Orthodox moshav in Israel and currently resides in Riverdale, NY and North Adams, MA with his wife Pamela Wax, a rabbi. He has a strong interest in economic justice. This is his sixth... Read More →


Monday February 16, 2015 8:30am - 9:45am EST
Belltown

11:30am EST

The Talmud Uncensored
Among the most incendiary passages in the Talmud are those that denigrate non-Jews. What do these texts actually say and how have they been read, resisted, and revised? We will explore the Talmud’s role in shaping relationships between Jews and non-Jews since late antiquity and learn how Christian censorship reshaped the Talmud. Can censorship ever be good? Can the Talmud serve as a teaching for all people? What is the role of censorship in preparing the Talmud—and the Jews—for modernity?

Presenters
MW

Mira Wasserman

Mira Wasserman is on the faculty of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, where she teaches Talmud. For her, the Talmud is both a great work of literature and a resource for thinking about contemporary ethics, and she seeks to open Talmud up for students and seekers of all ages... Read More →


Monday February 16, 2015 11:30am - 12:45pm EST
Elm