9 June 2020
An open letter from Graham Carpenter and Hannah Stephenson
Dear senior LJY-Netzer Bogrim and young adult members of Liberal Judaism,
We hope you are all OK and finding the ways that work for you to get through these tough times. We are sure that many of you have been personally affected and are thinking about a dramatically different future than the one you envisioned. We know that exams, universities, jobs, career prospects, camps, everything, has been and will continue to be impacted by the pandemic, by social distancing and the growing economic fallout.
We are writing to advocate that you apply to join the Board of National Officers of Liberal Judaism. The Board of National Officers (or BoNO for short) is the governing body of our central movement based at the Montagu Centre. We are the trustees of Liberal Judaism and have overall responsibility for making the movement run as an organisation.
We are aware that you might feel that the Board is conceptually very far away from you. It might seem like a very formal, professional body, and that you as ‘young people’ are way down the pecking order in the movement. Well, we are here to argue against that, and say that there is now a big opportunity to join this table.
There are a number of open positions up for election at Liberal Judaism’s AGM on the 7 July. We are hoping to recruit people to assist us in fundraising, community organising and development, social media and legal. You must be a member of a Liberal Community to apply. You can read more in this document.
With everything that is going on in our society right now, including the challenges that face you, our movement and the charity sector as a whole, the addition of young and passionate voices to the board of Liberal Judaism would be valuable, useful, representative and important.
There is a time commitment – roughly 10 meetings a year for a minimum term of three years, with a reasonable amount of correspondence via email and other channels in between – but you will get to play an invaluable role in some big strategic processes.
There are obvious benefits to Liberal Judaism from having you join the Board, such as the representation of an important demographic within the wider movement, and the technological skills and ideas that your generation naturally brings. And there are some other less obvious, but equally valuable, benefits around life cycle, education, creative thinking and expressing modern Jewish identity.
It is not selfish to think about what you will get out of being a Board member. It looks great on a CV, is a deeply respected form of volunteering and will provide you with valuable experience and learning about good governance, budgeting, decision making and strategy. Running a charity has many similarities to running a business.
The deadline for applications is June 15, and applications must be sent to Rabbi Charley Baginsky. She can be reached on email@example.com.
If you are reading this thinking “maybe I can do this…” we encourage you to apply as it is a fantastic opportunity. If you have any questions, please reach out to us. We would be delighted to speak to you.