Remembering Arie Gluck, Jewish Camp Visionary

Inside Leadership

Remembering Arie Gluck, Jewish Camp Visionary

Arie Gluck, the longtime director of URJ Camp Harlam in Kunkletown, PA, died this past week at the age 86.

Arie was a legend, and although he was long retired when I started working at the URJ, he was very much present - not only because of his storied past as an Israeli Olympian who fought in Israel's war of independence but because of what he built. Yes, he built a gorgeous summer camp, but, more importantly, he built a magical place where campers and the young staff who led them celebrated Judaism, Israel, and the great outdoors. Arie was a bit like Joshua and Caleb: He could see through the challenges and see the beauty and importance of giving young people these incredible opportunities.

Arie was one of the early architects of Jewish camping. Studies today document what he knew instinctively: that Jewish summer camp is one of the best ways to build strong, healthy, and joyous individuals who see Judaism as the foundation of success. As the URJ expands the number of camps and other efforts to engage more young people, Arie's legacy will continue to burn brightly.

Read more tributes to Arie:

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Miriam T. Chilton is the Union for Reform Judaism's vice president of youth; she previoulsy served as director of strategy, operations, and finance, for URJ Youth, Camp and Israel Programs. Miriam holds a master of arts in business administration and a master of science in information systems from Boston University, as well as a bachelor of arts in political science from Ithaca College. When she's not out in the field trying to engage more young people, Miriam is an active member of Temple Ner Tamid in Bloomfield, N.J.

Miriam T. Chilton

Published: 6/29/2016

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