Saturday, February 8
7:30 PM – 10:00 PM
Movie Screening, and Program
Co-sponsored by JCRC of Greater Washington DC and World Jewish Congress
Movie Screening of Who Will Write Our History
In November 1940, days after the Nazis sealed 450,000 Jews in the Warsaw Ghetto, a secret band of journalists, scholars and community leaders decided to fight back. Led by historian Emanuel Ringelblum and known by the code name Oyneg Shabes, this clandestine group vowed to defeat Nazi lies and propaganda not with guns or fists but with pen and paper. Now, for the first time, their story is told as a feature documentary. Written, produced, and directed by Roberta Grossman and executive produced by Nancy Spielberg, Who Will Write Our History mixes the writings of the Oyneg Shabes archive with new interviews, rarely seen footage and stunning dramatizations to transport us inside the Ghetto and the lives of these courageous resistance fighters. They defied their murderous enemy with the ultimate weapon – the truth – and risked everything so that their archive would survive the war, even if they did not. Today, with the advent of social media, we are all our own journalists. What is our role and responsibility in ensuring we document the truth of what is happening in our communities and on issues we care about?
Moderator: Ron Halber, JCRC of Greater Washington, D.C. Speakers: Karen Paikin Barall, Hadassah, Washington D.C.; Roberta Grossman, Who Will Write Our History, Courtney C. Radsch, Committee to Protect Journalists
Sunday, February 9
Monday, February 10
8:30 AM – 10:00 AM
Sponsored by the Shalom Hartman Institute
Leaders in the JCPA network strive to build consensus around the pursuit of justice and shared goals locally and nationally. But American society has become so politically polarized – and Jewish American communities have followed – making this work extremely difficult. How can staff and lay leaders lead courageously in this moment? By analyzing the current context and looking at a case study, we will explore ways to be strong advocates, take risks wisely, and support those who face backlash. The session will be grounded in Jewish language, values, and material from the Shalom Hartman Institute’s Civic Engagement initiative and Courageous Leadership white paper.
Speakers: Rabbi Justus Baird, Shalom Hartman Institute of North America; Jennifer Raskas, Shalom Hartman Institute of North America
10:00 AM – 10:35 AM
Israel and Peace in an Age of Polarization: Getting Beyond Zero Sum
Sponsored by the Shalom Hartman Institute
If Israel was once a great unifying force in the American Jewish community, it seems today to be increasingly a source of division. As politics in America becomes ever more polarized, the discussion over Israel and the pursuit of peace becomes yet another partisan issue pulling communities apart. Is it possible for Israel to be a bipartisan issue moving forward? What does peace activism look like when the prospect of peace seems so far away? And what is the future of U.S.-Israel relations when both communities are so divided.
Speaker: Dr. Tal Becker, Shalom Hartmann Institute, Israeli Legal Expert, Peace Negotiator
10:35 AM – 10:45 AM
JCPA Program Excellent Award Presentation
Recipient: JCRC of St. Louis for “Jewish Coalition for New Americans (JCNA) Day Camp”
11:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Workshop Sessions (5)
Speaking About Israel in Progressive Circles
While considerable attention is paid to researching, analyzing, and opining about the Israel conversation in progressive circles, precious little time is spent actually engaging constructively with the left on Israel. What works and doesn’t work? What do we need to do to reach the right audiences with the right messages? What strategies and best practices have been effective?
Speakers: Ethan Felson, JFNA/JCPA Israel Action Network, Geri Palast, JFNA/JCPA Israel Action Network
Restoring Civility – the JCRC Role
Today no Jewish institution is immune from the growing polarization and incivility that affects both the broader society and Jewish community. This workshop will utilize case studies to provide specific skills to enhance JCRC’s role in minimizing, managing and mitigating polarization.
Speaker: Rabbi Doug Kahn, Broad Tent Consulting
Campus Climate: Israel, Antisemitism and the Challenges they Pose
How are members of the college ecosystem handling the crucial issues of antisemitism and anti-Zionism? In this session, you will hear from a student, a professor, an administrator, and a Hillel professional about their approaches to these topics, as well as how different universities are handling them. Learn the importance of taking a cross-disciplinary approach to managing these campus issues.
Speakers: Dr. Moses Davis, Johns Hopkins University; David Greenberg, Rutgers University; Jason Horowitz, Hillel International
Changing Communities: Black-Jewish Relations in a Time of Growing Antisemitism and Racism
Over the past year, there have been rising tensions–with tragic consequences–between local African and Caribbean American communities and their Jewish neighbors in New York and New Jersey. These incidents highlight the need for the Jewish community relations field to reexamine our work in building a shared society and effectively combating antisemitism. Demographic changes and gentrification throughout America and globally are generating intergroup tensions and resentment. Such resentment, combined with decades of unresolved racial and religious conflict, have produced a pronounced uptick in hate, violence and antisemitic acts. We can no longer rely on fond memories of civil rights era collaboration to maintain peaceful relations. What do our intergroup alliances really look like? What are the best ways of both building good will and opposing bigotry in today’s world? What are Some of the evolving best practices in meeting these challenges?
Moderator: Nancy Kaufman, NKK Strategic Consulting Speakers, Rabbi Robert Kaplan, JCRC-NY; Carly Pildis, Activist; Rabbi Shais Rishon, Kehilat Ir Chadash
Social Innovation, Inclusivity and Coexistence in Israel
Israel is one of the most dynamic and heterogenous societies in the world. It faces a myriad of challenges in managing its diversity and its relationship with its Palestinian neighbors in the West Bank. How are the Israeli government and civic organizations contending with these challenges? What are successes it can build on and where have we seen innovation? How can American Jews help? Join experts from Israel and the US in this highly interactive session.
Moderator: Stephanie Hausner, JFNA/JCPA Israel Action NetworkSpeakers: Revital Duek, Tsofen; Kevin Rachlin, Alliance for Middle East Peace (ALLMEP); Ambassador Yehuda Yaakov, Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs
12:00 PM – 1:00 PM
JCPA Board of Director Meeting (committee members only)
1:15 PM – 2:15 PM
Workshop Sessions Repeated (5)
2:30 PM – 3:15 PM
Current Events in Israel: Unpacking the Headlines
Join policy and academic experts as they discuss recent events in Israel: A deadlocked political process bringing Israel to an unprecedented third election in one year, calls for West Bank annexation, security threats from the north and south, a still yet to be released Trump administration peace plan and, most recently, elevated tensions with Tehran following the death of Quds Force Commander Qassem Suleimani.
Moderator: Dr. Efraim Chalamish, NYU School of Law Panelists: Dr. Michael Koplow, Israel Policy Forum; Dr. Kenneth W. Stein, Emory University; Dr. Tamara Cofman Wittes, Brookings Institution
3:20 PM – 4:05 PM
Rebuilding the Black-Jewish Alliance to Fight For a Better Country
Hear from one of today’s courageous leaders, Representative Brenda Lawrence (D-MI), founder of the newly-created, bipartisan Congressional Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations. The Caucus aims to bring together politicians from both communities and both sides of the aisle to learn from each other and advocate for joint concerns. At this session, participants will learn about Representative Lawrence’s vision for rebuilding trust, relationships, and alliances to fight for justice and against antisemitism. She will also discuss ways to support and amplify this initiative locally.
Speakers: Representative Brenda Lawrence, D-MI/Congressional Caucus on Black-Jewish Relations; Rabbi Asher Lopatin, Jewish Community Relations Council/AJC, Detroit
4:10 PM – 5:00 PM
4:30 PM – 6:00 PM
- JCRC Chairs Initiative Meeting
- JCPA/JCRC Professional Meeting
- JCPA Board Roadmap Task Force Meeting
- National Jewish Criminal Justice Network Meeting
- Frank Fellows Cohort Meeting
Dinner on Own
8:00 – 10:00 PM
Delegate Assembly and Resolutions
Tuesday, February 11
8:30 AM – 9:15 AM
The Power of Faith Voices
Interfaith coalitions have an important role to play in the American policy landscape. At the national level, JCPA partners with Washington based faith organizations in common cause on priority issues including immigration, social safety net, criminal justice reform and fighting racism, and more. In this session, attendees will hear from faith leaders on current legislative and advocacy priorities.
Moderator: Sister Simone Campbell, NETWORK – Advocates for Justice, Inspired by Catholic Sisters Speakers: Katie Adams, United Church of Christ; Rev. Aundreia Alexander, Esq., National Council of Churches; Amelia Kegan, Friends Committee on National Legislation; Martin Shupack, Church World Service
9:15 AM – 10:00 AM
Elevating Jewish Values on Poverty and Human Needs
Under the community relations umbrella, Jewish organizations come together to elevate the Jewish voice on policy concerns that reflect our values of justice and fairness. Hear from Jewish organizations advocating for the most vulnerable, on issues such as poverty, federal budget, and food insecurity, and reproductive care and disability rights.
Moderator: Corey Shapiro, JCPA Policy Committee Vice Chair Speakers: Darcy Hirsh, Jewish Federations of North America/Network of Jewish Human Service Agencies; Dorian Karp, Jewish Women International; Liza Lieberman, MAZON: A Jewish Response to Hunger; Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, Respectability; Mizrahi Family Charitable Fund
10:00 AM – 11:45 AM
Antisemitism: Building a Roadmap – Part 2
The community relations field is rich with experience and expertise on how best to fight antisemitism. This panel will highlight innovative efforts from JCRCs and national agencies to counter hate and antisemitism. Participants will engage in an interactive discussion on developing a roadmap for the field to fight the latest iterations of the world’s oldest hatred.
Speakers: Rob Goldberg, Jewish Federations of North America; Michael Lieberman, Anti-Defamation League; Mike Salamon, Anti-Defamation League
JCRC Delegation Hill Visits (Optional)