May 1, 2023
By Nancy B. Greer
President & CEO
In March, a group of 175 Jewish community leaders from around North America, including Seattle’s Ronit Droker and Andrea Lott, traveled to Latvia and Hungary for the National Young Leadership Cabinet’s International Study Mission.
For Andrea and Ronit, participating in the mission was a powerful, memorable experience of what engaged, responsible leadership can accomplish. The journey illuminated the impact Cabinet has in developing the capacity of young leaders to make a difference for Jewish life.
Cabinet is a Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) leadership development program that your Federation sponsors in our region for promising volunteers ages 30 to 40. Applicants accepted into the program can look forward to a five-year curriculum, grounded in Jewish values, that gives participants the knowledge and skills they need to be effective leaders.
As Ronit shared afterward, “From the creation of a JCC in Budapest to the value of educating children at a new ORT school in Riga, our Federation’s support helps not only our community in Seattle but other Jewish communities around the world.”
“The opportunity to be with like-minded Jews from across North America was inspirational. Seeing and understanding our impact abroad, in communities where Jews were nearly completely wiped out only two generations ago and are rebuilding and thriving today was eye-opening and touching,” Andrea recalled.
In addition to mission opportunities, the Cabinet experience includes an in-person retreat each summer, virtual learning, mentorship, opportunities to lobby Congress on Capitol Hill on issues of national importance to the Jewish community, and access to an influential network of Cabinet alumni across North America, which now numbers 4,200 leaders. Cabinet provides opportunities for impactful service—like the mishloach manot baskets that the local group packed for Jewish Family Service’s clients for Purim in 2022.
Each person who takes part in Cabinet has a unique story to tell about the profound impact it makes on their lives, their Jewish journey, and their community. If you or someone you know is ready to make a difference for local and global Jewish life, consider joining this wonderful group of young leaders.
For Ronit, it’s all about strengthening Jewish life and building “resilience and pride for being Jewish and loving Israel.”
For Andrea, “It makes me proud to be a part of our local and global Jewish community and motivates me to do more to help others.”
Community members like you make impactful programs like Cabinet possible. Thank you!