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CJF to Open Office in Israel

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The Board of Directors of the Council of Jewish Federations has approved the reopening of the CJF office in Israel to enhance the relationship between North American Jewish federations and Israel and to fulfill specific service functions for its member federations.

“Communication and interaction between North American federation leaders and Israeli leaders has increased dramatically in the past few years,” CJF president Martin Citrin, of Detroit said. “We have come to realize that Israelis in almost all segments of society are, for the most part, uninformed and unaware regarding the North American Jewish federation movement, including its agenda, services, philosophy, community organization and problem-solving approaches. This has impaired the effectiveness of dialogue and cooperation between the two communities. We expect that the reopening of the CJF Israel office will usher in a rich new era of Israel-Diaspora relations.”

During the May meeting of the CJF Board, consensus emerged as to the fact that the growing agenda of federations made the restoration of the CJF Israel office crtical at this time. Council maintained an Israel office from 1968 until 1972, and its restoration was among the recommendations of the 1979 CJF Review. The new office will open in the fall as a three-year pilot project.

Carmi Schwartz, CJF executive vice president, announced that Martin Kraar, executive vice president of the Jewish Federation of St. Louis will serve as director general of the Israel office.

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