Lay Leadership and Professional Staff Development

Jewish Experiential Leadership Institute (JELI)

The Jewish Experiential Leadership Institute (JELI), a leadership and professional development program designed for JCC professionals, was co-launched by the JCC Association and the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) in March 2012. This fellowship program is the result of collaborative efforts among the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education of The Jewish Theological Seminary and JCC Association’s Department of Professional Development and Mandel Center for Jewish Education.

The JELI program is designed as an in-service program for middle- and senior-management professionals in Jewish Community Centers throughout North America. The initial cohort of 20 fellows will learn to apply Jewish frameworks—including values, ethics, texts, and traditions—to setting their organizations’ vision, executing day-to-day management, and developing their own leadership identities. JELI’s primary goal is to enhance the personal growth, Jewish leadership abilities, and professional skill sets of talented emerging leaders working in settings that nurture Jewish experiential education programs.

Applications are now open for the JELI Fellows Class of 2014-2015. To learn about the application process, visit

JELI Fellows 2012-2013

  • Allan Bogan – Harry & Rose Samson JCC, Milwaukee, WI
  • Robin Brous – JCC of Central New Jersey, Scotch Plains, NJ
  • Randy Comensky – Evelyn Rubenstein JCC, Houston, TX
  • Rebecca Coolong – Springfield JCC, Springfield, MA
  • Lili Kalish-Gersch – Washington DC JCC, Washington, DC
  • Shirly Goldstein – JCC of Greater Vancouver, Vancouver, BC
  • Alyssa Golob – JCC of the Greater St. Paul Area, St. Paul, MN
  • Ari Golub – Mandel JCC of Cleveland, Beachwood, OH
  • Melanie Gruenwald – Robert E. Loup JCC, Denver, CO
  • Anne Liss Johnson – JCC of Stamford, Stamford, CT
  • Marshall Kurland – Sid Jacobson JCC, East Hills, NY
  • Michele Levine – JCC of the East Bay, Berkeley, CA
  • Eve Lunt – Barbara and Ray Alpert JCC, Long Beach, CA
  • Betzy Lynch – Memphis JCC, Memphis, TN
  • Elana MacGilpin – Mandell JCC, West Hartford, CT
  • Jill Madsen – Sabes JCC, St. Louis Park, MN
  • Leslie Meyers – 92nd Street Y, New York, NY
  • Miller, Jodi – Marcus JCC of Atlanta, Dunwoody, GA
  • Will Winer – JCCs of Greater Boston, Newton, MA

To learn more about JELI please contact Joy Brand-Richardson, Director of Training and Professional Leadership at

Help tell the 100-year history of the JCC Movement & JWB Jewish Chaplains Council. Share your story