Melissa Greenberg will be joining the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia as its new chief development officer starting July 25.
Melissa Greenberg is no stranger to development positions with large organizations.
On her impressive resume is her position as director of development at the Kimmel Center, where she ran the $265 million campaign to build the center; her role as chief of staff to the president of Temple University, where she helped raise nearly $400 million for its Access to Excellence campaign; and serving as the director of development and sponsorship for then-Gov. Ed Rendell, where she helped get donations and gifts toward what became Welcome America and Millennium Philadelphia, among other initiatives.
Most recently, she served as vice president of development for the Free Library of Philadelphia Foundation, where she helped implement a $190 million campaign that went toward initiatives such as renovating facilities, adding new technology and programming, and expanding exhibitions.
Now, she is looking forward to working with her Jewish roots.
Greenberg will be joining the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia as its new chief development officer starting July 25.
A University of Pennsylvania graduate, Greenberg studied philosophy with minors in art history and French, first imagining she would work in a museum setting.
She soon found her love for working in development and philanthropy.
“I thought being involved in development was central to making things happen,” she said. “Development is the business side of all the wonderful things that philanthropy does, and I’m really drawn to the business aspect of it but also the very human aspect of it.”
With Jewish Federation, she will be able to continue the organization’s legacy but also work with the people who have made it happen.
“I hope to really build on the incredible history of Jewish Federation and the community here in Philadelphia and continue to strengthen and grow that community for the future,” she said. “I think it comes from a respect [for] all the work that goes on and is done there every day, and the thousands and thousands of people that [Jewish] Federation touches in so many ways. [The Jewish Federation is] helping those people that are involved there now to be more deeply connected and those that are not connected right now for whatever reason to understand how we can build and strengthen the community.”
A lifelong Philadelphian, Greenberg is a member of Adath Israel. She’s moved around a bit, she laughed, recalling having her Bat Mitzvah at Congregation Adath Jeshurun and confirmation at Congregation Beth Or. But no matter where she was in the city or surrounding areas, she’s always been connected to her Judaism.
That connection is one she feels with Jewish Federation and one she hopes others will feel if they haven’t already, especially because the Jewish Federation reaches so many — not just in Philadelphia.
“What I also really love about it is it’s deeply local but also so global,” Greenberg said, “and that while we are strengthening the Jewish community in Philadelphia, we’re also con-nected to Jews around the world, and I think that is extremely powerful and particularly relevant in these times.”
Greenberg hasn’t started yet, but she’s already focusing on how to strengthen the community and bring people together through the work she will do.
“I see the chief development officer’s role as twofold,” she said. “First, it’s really galvanizing [Jewish] Federation as the center for Jewish philanthropy in Philadelphia, supporting the incredible group of lay leaders and volunteers who are so committed and really working close with the professional staff so they have all the resources they need to be successful.”
In the meantime, she is looking forward to getting started and being involved with the Jewish Federation community.
But first she’ll need to find her office, she laughed.
“I really can’t wait to meet the team I’m going to be working with because I know there’s so many great people that make up the staff that are deeply committed to all this work.”
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