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Jewish Journal

Jacob Berkman

  • Heralded Choice to Lead S.F. Federation Makes Quick Exit

    September 23, 2009 | 8:54 pm

    Those looking for signs of change in the Jewish community’s largest charitable network had hailed the hiring of Daniel Sokatch to run the Jewish federation in San Francisco. But after serving a little more than a year, Sokatch is departing to become the CEO of the New Israel Fund...

  • The Case of Sam Goldstein and the Swine Flu Vaccine

    May 27, 2009 | 3:55 pm

    What they didn’t tell Samuel Goldstein in 1976 about the swine flu vaccine killed him.

    Now his widow and son say that should be a lesson for anyone worried about the warnings of a swine flu pandemic.

    Although there is no vaccine yet for the current strain of swine flu, U.S....

  • Grim news from Mumbai hits home

    November 30, 2008 | 5:04 pm

    complete coverage on mumbai chabad attackNEW YORK (JTA)—Until confirmation finally came that the Chabad emissaries in Mumbai were among the more than 170 victims killed in this week’s terrorist attacks in India, Chabad Chasidim and emissaries the world over prayed for the best while fearing for the worst.

    By the morning of...

  • Philanthropy from Venus differs from philanthropy from Mars

    November 19, 2008 | 1:18 am

    Women give charity differently than men.

    They are a little more generous across the board and a little less egocentric in their giving. More often they believe that charity is a moral obligation. And they tend to be more inclined toward education, religion and health-related causes....

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  • Could economic slump—which means less giving— kill Jewish community innovation?

    October 10, 2008 | 12:39 am

    The past decade has seen a groundswell of innovative Jewish nonprofits -- from the birth of a Jewish pop culture magazine, Heeb, to the creation of a slew of trailblazing Jewish social service organizations, to an array of projects that allow Jews to express their Judaism through...
  • A coup for Hebrew U—Gates to accept award

    July 8, 2008 | 6:03 pm

    NEW YORK (JTA)—Usually a “mazel tov” would go to the person being honored, but this week the American Friends of the Hebrew University is accepting congratulations for convincing one of the world’s richest men to accept an award.

    Microsoft founder Bill Gates will receive the...

  • With economy faltering, nonprofits brace for recession

    April 3, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Americans continue to default on their mortgages in numbers not seen since the Great Depression. Banks continue to become more reticent about lending money. The stock market continues a herky-jerky tumble downhill.

    The finance industry is still roiling from last month's stunning...

  • Gap grows between Orthodox and others

    February 7, 2008 | 7:00 pm

    The growing ideological gap between the Orthodox and non-Orthodox threatens the long-term unity of the Jewish people, several communal leaders said at a forum to address the matter.

    At issue were the results of a survey conducted in November by the American Jewish Committee...

  • Lauder letter to Olmert urging Disapora role in Jerusalem negotiations stirs passions

    January 24, 2008 | 7:00 pm

    The president of the World Jewish Congress (WJC) has roiled the organization's branch in Israel by writing to Prime Minister Ehud Olmert with a plea to allow Diaspora Jews a voice in any decisions on Jerusalem's future.

    Ronald Lauder, in his Jan. 8 letter on WJC letterhead, wished...

  • Kenya crisis puts Jews on alert

    January 10, 2008 | 7:00 pm

    While the Jews of Kenya seem unscathed by the country's political crisis, Jewish nongovernmental agencies that work there and elsewhere in Africa are bracing for the long-term effects of the sudden outbreak of violence.

    Interethnic violence erupted Dec. 27 after the incumbent...

  • UJC reaches out to young innovators

    December 6, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    A self-described professional Jewish lesbian. A Web guru who calls himself the Orthodox Anarchist. A young, Oscar-winning producer.

    The United Jewish Communities (UJC) looked to this group and their disenfranchised peers for help at its annual General Assembly (GA) in Nashville in...

  • Falling dollar forces groups to adjust overseas spending

    November 15, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    While economists fret over how the falling U.S. dollar will affect global markets, Jewish charities that rely heavily on U.S. fundraising to support programs outside the United States are facing serious budget crunches.

    The dollar has been on a slow decline against the euro since...

  • Are Jewish groups missing the e-philanthropy boat?

    November 15, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    This is how easy online philanthropy can be: Yosef Eliezrie received a call one day from the Chabad emissary in Sderot seeking help for the citizens of the embattled Israeli town.

    Eliezrie, son of a Los Angeles-area Chabad rabbi, was lying in a hospital bed at Children's Hospital of...

  • Is Pot Kosher for Pesach?

    April 5, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Here's a fifth question for the seder: What makes this herb different from all others?

    The Green Leaf Party, a small Israeli political party that supports legalizing pot, announced March 27 that marijuana might not be kosher for Passover.

    The reason, they say, is that marijuana...

  • New study finds 1 million more Jews in U.S.

    March 1, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    A new study gives fairly concrete evidence that the American Jewish population could be more than 1 million people larger than believed -- but if so, it means efforts to engage them may have been less successful than the community realized.

    The United Jewish Communities' (UJC)...

  • Hillary Clinton touts tough Israel stand as ‘08 race begins

    February 8, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    In her first address to a Jewish group since announcing her candidacy for president, U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton tried to convince doubters that she'll stand by Israel in times of peril.

    Speaking Feb. 1 at a dinner for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee's (AIPAC) Northeast...

  • Baltimore grant could set day school trend

    November 30, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    Jewish day school officials are looking at a recent $15 million tuition-relief grant from the Baltimore-based Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation and The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore as a trend-setting move to alleviate one of the biggest challenges facing...
  • Israeli author Grossman exhorts Olmert to follow Rabin’s example

    November 9, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    He has long been known abroad as an Israeli novelist. But this weekend, David Grossman put fiction aside to become the voice of an Israel that is bruised, confused and yearning to see the horizon beyond the perennial war clouds.

    Grossman delivered the central address at Saturday...

  • ‘Top 400’ misses full picture of Jewish philanthropic giving

    November 2, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    Jewish groups annually look to The Chronicle of Philanthropy's list of top 400 fundraising organizations the way the business world looks to the Forbes Fortune 500 list -- to see how well Jewish philanthropy is doing.

    This year's list, called "Philanthropy 400," placed 24 Jewish...

  • It’s hard to find good day school leaders these days

    October 26, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    A dearth of leadership talent is affecting not only the likes of Yahoo! and Microsoft, it's also wreaking havoc on the Jewish day school system as schools find it increasingly difficult to recruit and retain qualified heads.

    Representatives from 11 Jewish educational organizations...

  • New commentary looks at Torah from woman’s point of view

    October 19, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    How many people know that when the Torah describes Abraham mourning the death of Sarah, it's the only time in the entire text that a man mourns a woman? Or that Adam and Eve were equal partners in crime? Or that women most likely were instrumental in constructing the Temple?

    Too few....

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