February 2, 2024

By Solly Kane
President & CEO


There are many business articles and books out there that preach that “leadership is a team sport.” It’s possible that this idea actually got its start in this week’s Torah portion, Yitro. 

In the portion, Jethro (Yitro in Hebrew), Moses’ father-in-law, witnesses Moses trying to administer justice in every dispute among the people. Jethro cautions Moses in Exodus 18:18: “You will surely wear yourself out and these people as well. For the task is too heavy for you. You cannot do it alone.”

Over the last two months, since I stepped into my role at the Federation, I have spent a lot of time hearing wisdom and advice from many people in our community. I am grateful to have communal partners, a great team of professionals at the Federation, and strong lay leaders, who all recognize that none of us can do it alone.

I’m particularly grateful to my predecessor Nancy Greer for her advice and counsel over the last two months as we have overlapped at the Federation at this moment of transition. During Nancy’s time at the Federation—first as CFO, then COO, and then for the last six years as CEO—she has worked tirelessly for our community. Under Nancy’s leadership, we have trained leaders through the Courageous Leadership Initiative, relaunched the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC), and come together as a community for two major emergency campaigns, first for Ukraine, and most recently for Israel after October 7. 

Nancy has led with humility, humor, and kindness through difficult and good times, and is beloved by the Federation professional team and many across our community.

This weekend, Nancy will be honored at our annual Connections gathering with the prestigious Althea Stroum Woman of Distinction Award, which recognizes outstanding dedication and service to the Jewish community. 

Just like Jethro, Nancy has also recognized throughout her tenure that leadership cannot happen alone, and has embodied that idea as she has fostered relationships across the communal landscape, built a strong professional team, and worked hand-in-hand with our lay leadership. It is clear that our community is better off having had Nancy’s leadership, and I am honored to build on the legacy that she has built at the Federation.

I hope you will join me at Connections this weekend to thank Nancy one more time and wish her well in her retirement!

Shabbat shalom,