By Nancy B. Greer
President & CEO
Just four years ago, your Federation—with the partnership of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF)—initiated the LIFE & LEGACY® program to help participating Jewish organizations build endowments for the future and nurture a culture of legacy giving in our region.
It was an ambitious undertaking, requiring an enormous commitment to building relationships, educating organizational leaders, managing program details, and steering everyone participating through inevitable bumps along the way.
Today, that undertaking has brought forth an abundance of good for our community—the 13 participating agencies and synagogues in the LIFE & LEGACY cohort are taking tangible steps to ensure a healthy future, over $12 million in legacy gifts have been pledged, and best of all, the organizations are helping each other succeed, with the full understanding that the success of each one benefits the whole community.
Without a doubt, this progress has been achieved so quickly and so well because of one person—Rachel Rosenman, your Federation’s LIFE & LEGACY Program Manager. To the cheers of all of us at Federation and her peers in the LIFE & LEGACY world across North America, this week the HGF bestowed on Rachel the prestigious Gail Littman Leadership Award, recognizing her for outstanding work turning LIFE & LEGACY in the Puget Sound region from an aspiration to a durable foundation for a stronger Jewish future. The award was presented to Rachel on Monday at the annual LIFE & LEGACY conference, held virtually this year by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and Jewish Federations of North America.
Rachel brings a rare combination of gifts to this important work—a passion for nurturing relationships that are at the heart of community, a talent for bringing people together for a common purpose, and practical skills in managing the details of a complex program.
To call Rachel a people person would be an understatement. For everyone involved in LIFE & LEGACY, Rachel treats them with respect, guides them tactfully through inevitable program hiccups, and is equal parts consultant, cheerleader, confidante, and friend—always with her sparkling smile and always with a passion for service.
The LIFE & LEGACY achievements of Rachel and the 13 participating cohort agencies will return lasting dividends—not only in growing endowment resources that will be increasingly important in the years ahead, but in shepherding habits of communal learning and collaboration that are vital for community life.
Jewish Puget Sound is fortunate to have someone of Rachel’s caliber planting seeds that will bear fruit as a more resilient, more vibrant community holding much promise for the future of Jewish life.
And while Rachel has done an outstanding job working across the community with the LIFE & LEGACY cohort, a big thank-you goes out to all of the legacy donors in our community who have brought this program to life. Because it is you who has made this program a reality and will nurture Jewish Puget Sound into the future.
Mazal tov and yasher koach, Rachel! We are so proud of you!