July 3, 2012, New York -- Last month, the North American Federation of Temple Youth installed new North American Board members for the 2012-2013 term during Mechina, a five-day leadership training event and general board meeting at URJ Kutz Camp: NFTY's Campus for Reform Jewish Teens. The election was held at the NFTY General Board meeting, Veida, in Utica, MS last Feburary, where each candidate spoke in front of the general board comprised of representatives of all 19 NFTY Regions.
Newly elected board members must be incoming college freshmen and are expected to be excellent role models. As peer advocates, they represent NFTY and its values at regional and North American events. Board members must help plan and facilitate a five-day long workshop to teach and prepare regional board members how to be effective leaders in their own communities. Following this workshop, the North American Board Members become full-time staff at the Kutz Campus, where they will teach high-school-aged campers from across the continent.
NFTY North American Board Members will also partner with staff and lay leaders working on the Union for Reform Judaism's Campaign for Youth Engagement, a focused, strategic effort to leverage the full strength and talent of every corner of the Reform Movement to engage and retain the majority of Reform Jewish youth by the year 2020.
The newly installed North American NFTY Board includes:
Evan Traylor, NFTY President, who will study political science and Jewish studies at the University of Kansas.
Jordan Rodnizki , NFTY Programming Vice President, who will study theatre arts and English at the University of Pennsylvania.
Joy Nemerson , NFTY Social Action Vice President, who will study Chinese and politics at American University.
Jacob Georginow, NFTY Religious and Cultural Vice President, who will study political science, Hebrew and leadership at the University of Central Florida.
Marlee Ribnick , NFTY Membership and Communications Vice President, who will study Journalism and music at the University of Missouri in the fall.
"Teens are not only our future, they are very much the present of Reform Judaism," said NFTY Director Subie Banaszynski. "Each year we transition from one group of teen leaders to the next, each building on the work of those who have come before."
"I am truly honored and humbled to have been installed as the 64th President of NFTY," said NFTY President Evan Traylor. "The potential of NFTY as a Reform Jewish youth movement is enormous and I am very excited to build on the momentum that the previous NFTY North American Board has already created."
About North American Federation of Temple Youth (NFTY)
For over seventy years, the North American Federation of Temple Youth (NFTY) has offered thousands of young people the opportunity to explore and live Reform Judaism. Today, more than 750 Reform congregations throughout North America sponsor Temple Youth Groups, bringing the NFTY experience to more than 10,000 high school-age young people in grades 9 thru 12. NFTY is an affiliate of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ.)
About the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ)
The Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) is a dynamic network of congregations, institutions, lay leaders, clergy and professionals across North America that impacts the lives of millions of individuals every day. Our progressive, inclusive approach unites thousands of years of Jewish tradition and values with modern Jewish experience to strengthen Judaism today and for future generations. Through programs, information and networking opportunities provided by the URJ, our nearly 900 member congregations enhance their capacity to build and expand community, deepen Jewish learning, energize worship, pursue social justice and develop inspired leadership.