Shabbat Shalom

Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Esther Did Not Sit Idly By

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, March 6, 2015

The buzz this past week has been about Prime Minister Netanyahu’s speech in Congress.  Admittedly, there is a divide both within and from outside the Jewish community as to whether the Prime Minister should have given the speech at all.  There is debate about the right way to eliminate the Iranian nuclear threat.  One thing […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Donating for All the Right Reasons

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, February 13, 2015

In last week’s New York Times Magazine, “The Ethicist” had a question posed to him.  The question raised was, “During a pledge drive for a public-radio station, an on-air personality made an accusation I’d never heard:  that regular listeners who never contributed were behaving unethically.”  Is it unethical? The Ethicist responded that it was not […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Building Relationships, and Being a Mensch in Hollywood

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, February 6, 2015

Debbie Winn Horvitz, the CEO of the Jewish Association on Aging, spoke at a meeting of the Federation Beneficiary Agency Executives.  Debbie mentioned that at a recent session of the Wechsler Leadership Development Institute (Federation’s Young Adult leadership development program), one of the attendees was very taken by an aspect of the work of the […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

The Foundation of our Foundation

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, January 30, 2015

A tremendous Fundfest took place this past week. Despite some tough weather, hundreds came to the Federation offices to get on the phones to reach out and connect with other fellow community members to ask for their support of our 2015 Campaign.  Fundfest has propelled our campaign to $6 Million and added many new donors to our […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Funding Great Things

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, January 23, 2015

The Centennial Fund for a Jewish Future, our Federation’s initiative to secure permanent endowment dollars to fund Jewish identity building programming, has had exceptional progress since its inception just five years ago.  To date, approximately $24 Million in commitments have been secured and with much of those commitments already being paid by generous donors, we […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Je Suis Juif

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, January 16, 2015

I had intended to write today about a visit during my family’s December vacation in Atlanta at the Ebenezer Baptist Church.  I wanted to tie that into this Martin Luther King, Jr. weekend when we recall King’s struggle for civil rights in this country.  However, recent events have unfortunately redirected my message. Nearly three years […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

A Powerful Collective

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, December 19, 2014

Over the past few years, the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh has sent several missions to Cuba.  We witnessed a small yet vibrant Jewish community and saw the work our dollars make possible with our own eyes.  As part of those missions, we visited the American Intersection.  As you know, the United States has not […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

What a Week!

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, December 12, 2014

Sunday night was the graduation of this year’s cohort of Diller Teen Fellows.  This group of 20, who have been together with a group of teens from our Partnership2Gether Region of Karmiel and Misgav as part of a leadership development program, will travel to Israel in a few weeks.  Their originally scheduled trip this summer had […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Our Jewish Future is Inevitable – Make it Bright!

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, December 5, 2014

I write today about our Jewish future and about two ways our Federation is looking and preparing for that destination. Monday was the first Pittsburgh Jewish Community Scorecard Roundtable.  Approximately 65 volunteer and professional leaders in our community came together to review some of the findings in our first round of collecting data as part […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

What a Men's Philanthropy Event! And Pittsburgh Jews in the National Spotlight – again!

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, November 21, 2014

Last night, we held an incredibly successful, first ever, Men’s Night Out event.  A crowd beyond our expectations came out to hear ESPN star Herm Edwards.  The evening was fun and inspirational as we talked openly and directly about the needs of our Jewish community and the ways that these men can make a difference. […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

The GA – Our Impact in Action

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, November 14, 2014

In my message last week, I mentioned that I was going to be at the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America.  The GA made international news with a panel discussion with two Jewish Supreme Court Justices, a session with Marlee Matlin “speaking” about inclusion for individuals with special needs, a live video […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Sharing Pittsburgh with the Broader Jewish Community at the GA – Something to Be Proud Of!

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, November 7, 2014

Sunday is the beginning of the three-day Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly.  Volunteer and professional leaders from all 153 Jewish Federations and 300 Network communities from throughout North America, along with representatives of both national and international Jewish agencies, will be on site to learn, network and be inspired. We are really proud […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Outreach – Connecting to those who've left their native land

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, October 31, 2014

I am writing on Thursday night having just left Buffalo Blues in Shadyside.  Our Shalom Pittsburgh(the Federation’s outreach programming arm for 22-45 year olds) effort holds lots of bar nights for our young adults.  I have been to many.  This week, four of our community efforts to reach out and engage Jewish young adults joined forces […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Remembering Mollie

By Jeff Finkelstein / Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Sunday, I carried the coffin and helped fill the grave of my last remaining grandparent.  My father’s mother died at the age of 98 on Simchat Torah.  She was the youngest and the last living of 11 children born in Rumania.  She lived those early years without running water or electricity.  She emigrated to this country, […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Home Away from Home

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, October 3, 2014

Earlier this week, our Federation staff divided up and went to three of our local agencies:  Riverview Towers, the Jewish Association on Aging and the Squirrel Hill Community Food Pantry of Jewish Family and Children’s Service.  At each site, we volunteered our time to assist clients.  This was all part of our effort to kick […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

What an Impact!

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, September 19, 2014

At the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Annual Meeting on Wednesday night, we announced our financial achievements for the year. Our Campaign goal of $13.5 million, the highest ever for our community, was attained. Our Foundation, now with over $200 million under management, added over $18 million. Our work to raise Educational Improvement Tax Credit […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

A Sweet and Prosperous Time of Year

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, September 12, 2014

On Sunday, Shalom Pittsburgh will hold its Fourth Annual Apples & Honey Festival, in Schenley Park. Literally hundreds show up every year for this great program. If you have a young family or grandchildren in town, you don’t want to miss this. If you know of a young Jewish family that would like a Jewish program that […]

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Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh

Kol Yisrael Arevim Zeh Lazeh

By Jeff Finkelstein / Friday, September 5, 2014

A fabulous JCC with state-of-the-art exercise equipment, seniors playing mahj, a preschool with adorable children, and a memorial to the Holocaust. A day school with Hebrew words and Judaica covering the walls. A gorgeous facility for seniors, with shared kitchen facilities in every unit. I could be describing our Pittsburgh Jewish community’s renowned institutions. In […]

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