***The deadline for nominations is Oct. 31.***
After nearly a generation, the Wexner Heritage Program makes its return to Portland with nominations now open for the 2020 Portland cohort. As part of its 2020 Centennial Celebration, the Jewish Federation of Greater Portland is looking towards securing the future of Jewish life in Portland, partnering with the Wexner Foundation and local donors to bring Wexner back to Portland.
Heritage alumnus Mark Rosenbaum shares that “the WHF experience is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to immerse yourself in the development of Jewish thought, culture and detailed historical experience. The relationships you form, the opportunity to learn with a diverse group of peers with the finest instructors in the country is unparalleled.”
Alum Hank Kaplan’s reflects that “if all of Judaism were in a single book, the Wexner program…provides exposure to the full table of contents…It prepares Jews to be better leaders and prepares leaders to be better Jews.”
Wexner Heritage was established in 1985 when Leslie H. Wexner, Founder and CEO of LBrands, realized he felt ill-equipped with the relatively modest Jewish education he had received growing up to chair a major national Jewish organization. He believed leaders of any major enterprise should also “know their stuff”— in this case, Jewish history and tradition. Since its inception, more than 2,000 leaders have participated in the program.
Local leaders like Steve “Rosy” Rosenberg treasure what the program gave them. “The program provided me a new language to express my passion for Jewish life and its institutions, as well as Israel. It also added great meaning to everything I did in the community, providing the explanations I needed to support what I had been doing for years.”
The program consists of a two-year Jewish study experience with an additional focus on leadership. Each local Seminar group consists of 20 outstanding and diverse Jewish volunteer leaders. Serious Jewish learning unites these people who live in the same community but might otherwise never have worked together. The relationships created among members are the heart of the program.
To learn more about how you can participate or nominate, visit wexnerfoundation.org/programs/wexner-heritage-program or call WHF Director Rabba Yaffa Epstein at 614-939-6060.