The Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia celebrated young leaders by honoring the three 2015 Young Leadership Award winners at its Board of Trustees meeting.
On Wednesday, Oct. 21, the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia celebrated dedicated young leaders by honoring the three 2015 Young Leadership Award winners at its Board of Trustees meeting.
The Young Leadership Awards honor adults ages 25 to 45 with an exemplary record of participation and performance in the Jewish Federation and Philadelphia’s Jewish communal affairs, leadership giving to the Jewish Federation’s annual campaign and demonstrated potential for significant future growth within the leadership ranks of the Jewish Federation and its partner agencies. This year’s winners, who will be recognized once again at the Jewish Federations of North America’s General Assembly, were no exception.
Jeffrey Bartos received the Jack Goldenberg Young Leadership Award. Bartos, a real estate professional and President of ESB Holdings LLC, credited Green Valley Country Club for introducing him to the Jewish Federation. He began his involvement in the Jewish Federation through Jewish Federation Real Estate (JFRE) and recently became the group’s Chair. In addition, Bartos is a member of the Jewish Federation’s Policy, Strategy and Funding Committee and a participant in the Yesod initiative.
Bartos’s connection to the Jewish Federation and the Jewish community was strengthened in April 2013 when he participated in the Jewish Federation’s Men’s Entrepreneurs Mission to Israel, which he called a “truly life-changing opportunity.” Bartos “quickly developed a deep love for Israel that grows stronger every year.” The trip was so meaningful that he traveled back to Israel eight months later with his wife and two daughters on a family mission. Bartos said: “I can say with 100% certainty that these strong emotions and deepened understanding of all of our shared Jewish history would not exist but for the experiences that I have had with our Jewish Federation here in Philadelphia and in Israel.”
Deborah Gordon Klehr received the Mrs. Isidore Kohn Young Leadership Award. Gordon Klehr, who is the Executive Director of the Education Law Center, is a member of the Jewish Federation’s Women’s Philanthropy and Center for Social Responsibility boards, as well as a member of the Jewish Federations of North America Young Leadership Cabinet. She also serves on the Boards of Directors of both Jewish Family and Children’s Service of Greater Philadelphia (JFCS) and Congregation Rodeph Shalom and is a member of the Forum of Executive Women. Gordon Klehr credited her community involvement to her parents, who “showed me through their actions what tikkun olam means and what it means to be a member of the community.”
“I’m involved in the community here because I feel in my core that it is my responsibility to pursue social justice while also ensuring Jewish continuity,” said Gordon Klehr. “Whether I’m learning how JFCS safety-net services help the most vulnerable members of our community here in Philadelphia, or whether I am visiting a JDC program supporting rescue, relief and renewal for Jews worldwide, I am motivated to be and aspire to be a supporter and a leader here at Jewish Federation.”
Danielle Weiss was honored with the Myer and Rosaline Feinstein Young Leadership Award. Weiss, an attorney at Haines & Associates, serves as Chair of the Jewish Federation’s Renaissance Group and recently became a member of the Jewish Federation’s Board of Trustees. She is an alumna of the Jewish Federation’s Leadership Development Program and participated in the sixth cohort of Israel360.
“Jewish Federation is more than a place to write a check at the end of the year,” said Weiss. “It’s not an organization that benefits just the Jewish poor. Every single one of us benefits in some way from the efforts of this organization. It touches and concerns every aspect of our Jewish lives for those of us who are in need and those of us who are not. Being a leader in this organization is more than just holding a title. It’s about what you do with the title you have and it’s even more about what you do when you don’t have a title.”