The Jw Q&a

11/16/2015 - 19:00 | | The JW Q&A

Daryl Messinger made a little history recently in Orlando, the site of the Union for Reform Judaism’s biennial. A resident of Palo Alto, Calif., and an active board member of several organizations, Messinger was installed as URJ chair, becoming the first woman to hold that post. And she chanted Torah for the first time — in front of 5,000 worshippers at Shabbat morning services. Following the movement’s biennial, Messinger answered a few questions via email.

11/09/2015 - 19:00 | | The JW Q&A

Orni Petruschka, a high-tech entrepreneur and Israeli chairman of the Abraham Fund Initiatives, which promotes coexistence among Israel’s Jewish and Arab citizens, is one of three founders of Blue White Future. It is a nonpartisan political movement designed to create a Palestinian state alongside Israel. His two cofounders are Ami Ayalon, a former director of the Israel Security Agency, and Gilead Sher, a former Israeli peace negotiator. The Jewish Week caught up with him recently. This is an edited transcript.

11/03/2015 - 19:00 | | The JW Q&A

Rabbi Marcelo Bronstein announced recently that he will be stepping down from his full-time position at Congregation B’nai Jeshurun as of June 2017. While he will continue to serve part-time at BJ for three years after that, he plans to work as a mindfulness teacher, based mostly in Costa Rica. He’ll return to New York monthly and for the High Holidays. 

10/26/2015 - 20:00 | | Staff Writer | The JW Q&A

The leaders of Jewish community centers from 30 countries will meet in Jerusalem Nov. 3-6 for the 9th World Conference of Jewish Community Centers. With more than 1,000 JCCs around the world, the conference, convened by JCC Global, is billed as the largest international Jewish network. The Jewish Week interviewed Smadar Bar-Akiva, JCC Global executive director, by email; this is an edited transcript.

10/06/2015 - 20:00 | | Culture Editor | The JW Q&A

Last week, Princeton scholar Marina Rustow was named a recipient of a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship, more popularly known as a MacArthur “genius” award. The $625,000 prize is a no-strings-attached award, recognizing individuals who are “pushing the boundaries of their fields, improving our world in imaginative, unexpected ways,” as the foundation’s president, Julia Stasch, explains. The Jewish studies specialist is one of 24 writers, artists, scholars and musicians selected.

09/08/2015 - 20:00 | | Editor and Publisher | The JW Q&A

Adam Szubin, 42, the top U.S. Treasury Department official to monitor Iran’s sanctions compliance, was in New Jersey this week, traveling with Sen. Corey Booker (D-N.J.) and speaking to Jewish groups. Szubin is the product of an Orthodox home and day school education in Bergen County, N.J., and was a founder in 2002 of the DC Minyan, a traditional congregation with an egalitarian flavor. A graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, he has been with Treasury since 2004, and helped develop and coordinate policies on terrorist financing, money laundering, sanctions programs, rogue regimes, proliferation of weapons of mass destruction and intelligence analysis. This spring President Obama chose him as under secretary of terrorism and financial intelligence, informally described as “the sanctions czar.” He spoke to The Jewish Week by phone several times this week, apologetically cutting short a late-night conversation to meet his chavruta (study partner) for their regular Torah study time.