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David Wax Elected to Four-Year Term as JCC Association’s Board Chair

David Wax Elected to Four-Year Term as JCC Association’s Board Chair
18 others join the board for a two-year term

JCC Association of North America’s board of directors proudly elected David Wax of San Diego, California, as the 25th chairman of the organization at its May 2022 meeting. Wax’s family connection to the JCC Movement spans four generations, including his father and his uncle, who were instrumental in fundraising efforts to build the city’s original JCC on 54th Street—a legacy landmark for San Diego’s Jewish community.

In the years since, the JCC, now the Lawrence Family JCC on the Jacobs Family Campus (LFJCC), has been a constant in Wax’s life. Wax attended its early childhood education (ECE) program; spent summers at Camp Jaycee; was a fixture on the traveling basketball team, first as a player and later an assistant coach; and had his first stint on the JCC’s board as a 20-something, before serving as the agency’s board president decades later. His own children attended the J’s day camp and ECE, and today his grandson is enrolled in the LFJCC ECE.

Wax was elected to JCC Association’s board in 2004 and as a director, has served in various capacities. He and his family are longtime supporters of JCC Association and have consistently committed their time and financial resources to support various signature programs and the organization’s general operations.

Bringing strength and continuity to the leadership of the JCC Movement, Wax succeeds outgoing chair Gary E. Jacobs, a fellow San Diegan, who served in the role from 2018 to 2022 and whose strong partnership with President and CEO Doron Krakow launched a strategic shift in which JCC Association began to focus on augmenting and advancing its philanthropic endeavors for both the agency and the movement. “David brings extraordinary experience and wisdom drawn from years of work both locally and on the continental level. I know I have much to learn from him and am confident that ours will be a remarkable partnership as we build upon the achievements of Gary’s successful tenure.” said Krakow. “Together, we continue to raise the bar on our movement’s commitment to greater Jewish community and more vibrant Jewish life.”

Wax will be instrumental in this summer’s 40th anniversary of JCC Maccabi®, a signature program of JCC Association that is relaunching after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic. Hosted this year by the Lawrence Family JCC, the Games’ return to San Diego reflects the importance of West Coast leadership within the JCC Movement. Wax is a longtime supporter of JCC Maccabi and a major sponsor of the upcoming 2022 events. His tenure also will coincide with the 75th anniversary of the state of Israel in 2023, which JCC Association’s Center for Israel Engagement will celebrate with numerous events and activities.

Based on his extensive local and continental board experience and business acumen, Wax intends to “strengthen, enhance, and transform” the organization by focusing on diverse philanthropic investment opportunities for the JCC Movement; elevating the relationships with and among JCCs; building meaningful connections with other organizations; and expanding the ambassadorial role of JCC Association board members. As he noted in remarks to the board at its meeting last month, “I’m excited about working with [the board], getting to know [them], collaborating and putting [their] respective talents and expertise to work. As leaders, [they] join with me at the most challenging yet exciting moments in our movement’s history. Together we will build more vibrant Jewish life, with intentional and measurable outcomes.”

In addition to Wax’s election as chair, a total of 18 individuals, a diverse array of Jewish leaders from within and beyond the JCC Movement, were elected to two-year terms as directors-at-large.

New members include:

  • Sandy Cardin, Queenstown, MD
  • Heather Small Gilbert, Davie, FL
  • William Goodman, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Bobby Hammel, Allentown, PA
  • Jonathan Hoffer, Phoenix, AZ
  • Elise Jordan, Memphis, TN
  • Marisa Mandrea, Chicago, IL
  • Jeremy Samuels, Houston, TX
  • Jessica Sillins, New Paltz, NY

These leaders who previously served the movement have been elected to return to JCC Association’s board:

  • Carol Weintraub Fogel, West Bloomfield, MI
  • Paul Gillis, Denver, CO
  • Rabbi Bonnie Koppell, Phoenix, AZ
  • David Peltz, Toronto, ON
  • Annette G. Saxon, Baltimore, MD
  • Susan B. Strait, Milwaukee, WI

Three JCC CEOs will also join the board:

  • Addie Goodman, JCC Chicago, IL
  • Jonathan Lev, Boulder JCC, CO
  • Leonard Petlakh, Kings Bay YM-YWHA, Brooklyn, NY

Each, through their commitment and willingness to serve as leaders, demonstrates an abiding belief in the JCC Movement as North America’s greatest platform for Jewish life and Jewish community—today, tomorrow, and long into the future.


About JCC Association of North America

JCC Association of North America leads and connects the JCC Movement, advancing and enriching North American Jewish life. With 1.5 million weekly in-person and online visitors to more than 170 Jewish Community Centers and Jewish Community Camps (JCCs), including half a million friends and neighbors from beyond the Jewish community, the JCC Movement is the continent’s largest platform for both Jewish engagement and Jewish community relations. As the convening organization of this dynamic network, JCC Association partners with JCCs to bring together the collective power and knowledge of the entire JCC Movement, including 10,000 full-time and 18,000 part-time professionals, exclusive of seasonal professionals. By supporting them, together we enhance and strengthen Jewish life throughout North America. Learn more at or on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

Please note that JCC Association of North America should not be referred to as JCCA or the JCC Association but initially as JCC Association of North America and as JCC Association, or JCCNA in subsequent references.

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