A: To find the member of the URJ Congregational Network team who is specifically assigned to work with your congregation, click on Congregational Contacts in the quick links on the right side of the URJ.org home page.
A: The search process for rabbis is coordinated by the Placement Director of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR) and the search process for
cantors is coordinated by the Placement Director of the American Conference of Cantors (ACC). You can initiate a search or find out information about the
search by contacting the placement directors directly:
If you wish, you can also begin the process and discuss your specific search with your URJ Network's Rabbinic Director. The Rabbinic Director can answer
questions and provide guidance and will ultimately connect you with the appropriate placement director:
There are three paths available within the URJ to discuss issues that you may have about clergy contracts.
One is to contact Norman Leopold, the URJ's General Counsel or Carl Silverman (contact the Knowledge Network for their direct contact information at URJ1800@urj.org or 1.855.URJ.1800). Norman and Carl have a group of knowledgeable lay leaders who are familiar with
clergy contracts and who are available to consult on a number of contract issues. While most, if not all, are attorneys, they do not provide legal advice.
The second path is to contact the Rabbinic Director in your District (see Q2 above).
The third is to pose your question to other congregational presidents on PRESCONF - the URJ president listserv (see Q11 below).
Contact your Congregational Network primary contact. You should provide information about your board and congregation and discuss both your general needs and the specific goals that you have
for a board workshop. Your Congregation Network primary contact will then find an appropriate trained facilitator that would be available and best suited
for your situation.
Because there are several different types of issues related to support for the Reform Movement, the person with whom you should speak depends on the type
of question that you have. The URJ has professional staff in the MUM department who can address most questions and, there is a large cohort of lay leaders
serving in District and North American MUM leadership positions who can provide assistance and information as well. Shelley Hubert is the URJ professional Director of Membership. She can be reached at: 212.650.4172.
The Knowledge Network responds to questions about congregational life and Reform Judaism. The Knowledge Network staff can also connect you with resources
and people who can more fully respond to specific inquiries. Connect with the Knowledge Network by emailing your questions to URJ1800@urj.org or by calling 1.855.URJ.1800 (1.855.875.1800).
The congregations section of URJ.org links to areas of congregational life that are frequently addressed. Each topic has a direct link to additional resources specific to that topic
(e.g., the finance page includes many topics such as annual commitment, budgets, fundraising, as well as webinars on various finance topics).
When a new president assumes office, it is important that the contact information about that transition is updated with the URJ so important and timely
information specific to congregational presidents is getting to the right people. This can easily be done by
updating your congregational leadership lists. Should you have any question or trouble doing this, please contact data management at
email@example.com or Robin Riback at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A:The Scheidt Seminar is the North American Training Institute for Congregational Presidents and Presidents-Elect. It is held over a weekend each April (2013 dates are: April
25-28) in Atlanta, GA where participants have the opportunity to meet other presidents, share ideas and the senior leadership of the URJ including URJ
President Rick Jacobs and URJ Chair Steven Sacks. For more information, please send an email to: ScheidtSeminar@urj.org
Presconf is a listserv provided by the URJ for all congregational presidents. It has proven to be a very useful discussion forum for presidents and a place
where questions can be posed and issues discussed with others from congregations throughout North America. Presidents-elect can also participate beginning
6 months prior to the start of their term and Immediate Past Presidents can remain on Presconf.
To enroll in Presconf, send the following information to Shelley Schweitzer, the URJ Director, Congregational Networks, at email@example.com:
The URJ Conference of Presidents (COP) is a body within the URJ comprised of all presidents of URJ Congregations. It serves to represent congregational
presidents to senior professional and lay leadership within the URJ including the URJ Board and Oversight Committee. In addition, the Conference of
Presidents helps represent URJ leadership to congregational leaders.
The URJ COP is managed by a 16-person Steering Committee. The initial Steering Committee is comprised of 12 members who were appointed by the URJ District
Chairs, three from each District and four members appointed by the URJ Chair. The members of the Steering Committee were selected to represent the
geographic, size and attribute diversity of our congregations. Beginning in 2013, there will be elections for members of the Steering Committee in each
The URJ COP holds regular webinars for all presidents with Rabbi Jacobs and members of the URJ senior leadership, and other webinars as necessary. The URJ
COP also conducts surveys of presidents so that it can accurately and properly represent the "opinion" and "view" of presidents to leadership.
The current roster of the Steering Committee is at the end of this document. You can contact the Steering Committee or Michael Laufer, Chair of the URJ
Conference of Presidents at firstname.lastname@example.org.
UNION FOR REFORM JUDAISM CONFERENCE OF PRESIDENTS
STEERING COMMITTEE - INITIAL TERM 2011 -2013 (AS OF 12-14-12)
David P. Kasakove, IPP Congregation Beth Elohim (640) Brooklyn, NY
Ron Galbraith, President Congregation Micah (465) Brentwood, TN
Agie Seife, President Temple Israel of Catskill (80) Catskill, NY
Stephen Enda, IPP Temple Shalom (800) Dallas, TX
Donald Simon, IPP Rodef Shalom Congregation (1100) Pittsburgh, PA
Paul Vanek, President Agudas Israel Congregation (174) Hendersonville, NC
URJ Board/Executive Committee
Ron Simon, IPP Congregation Beth Israel (1160) San Diego, CA
Michael Laufer, Steering Committee Chair, IPP Temple Shaaray Tefila (1525) New York, NY
Judi Amsel, President Congregation Brith Sholem (47) Ogden, UT
Shirley Gordon, Past President The Cape Cod Synagogue (325) Hyannis, MA
Stuart Rayvid, IPP Temple B'nai Or (580) Morristown, NJ
Chuck Magerman, IPP Temple Har Zion (550) Thornhill, ON
Charlie Rothschild, Past President Congregation Beth Am (1500) Los Altos Hills, CA
Susan Burack, President Temple Jacob (15) Hancock, MI
Largest Congregation Task Force
Marc Whitesfield, President Temple Israel (3,400) West Bloomfield, M
Nancy Solomon, Past President Congregation Rodeph Sholom New York, NY