Allan Finkelstein came to JCC Association more than two decades ago, and he gave us a vision, an unshakeable belief that JCCs — together, as a Movement — play a critical role in shaping Jewish identity.
He couldn’t have been more right.
Allan has always insisted on service and excellence. During his tenure, JCC Association has come to offer a wider scope of signature programs and tools to its member JCCs, enabling them to evolve into modern centers of wellness in mind, body and spirit.
He has held that the Jewish-part of the JCC is its essence, to be embraced enthusiastically. And that the future of the movement is based on more than just identity, but engagement.
Always the mentor, Allan has helped hundreds of young professionals find their way, guiding, supporting and counseling staff on their journey.
Allan’s heart and soul have been nurtured in the JCC. He grew up attending the Emanuel Cohen Center in Minneapolis, the precursor of the JCC, and a JCC overnight camp, where he met his wife Bonnie. He served the Jewish communities in Buffalo, NY, Columbus, OH, and Los Angeles, CA. He has connected JCCs throughout North America.
His love of JCCs is clear. He leaves us prouder and stronger, looking ahead for ways to work with a new generation. We will miss him when he retires next month, and becomes president emeritus of JCC Association, but his impact on this organization and the mission of the movement will be felt for generations to come.
Thank you, Allan.