NEW YORK (Oct. 31)
Julius Berman has been elected president of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, succeeding William Lee Frost, who has served as JTA president since 1985.
The announcement was made by Martin Fox, chairman of the JTA nominating committee, at the annual meeting of JTA’s board of directors. JTA is the international agency that functions as the central news gathering and disseminating organization of world Jewry.
Berman, of Forest Hills, N.Y., is an attorney and partner in the New York law firm of Kaye, Scholer, Fierman, Hays and Handler, and is executive vice president and chief legal officer of Olympia and York (USA).
He attended Yeshiva University and New York University School of Law, and received his rabbinic ordination from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University.
A longtime director, officer and member of the JTA executive committee, Berman is a past chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations, honorary president of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America and past president of the National Jewish Commission on Law and Public Affairs, or COLPA.
Berman is a member of the U.S. Commission on the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad, co-chairman of the Joint Committee for the Preservation of Jewish Heritage in the Soviet Union, chairman of the Kashrut Commission of the O.U., and chairman of the Task Force on Missionaries and Cults of the New York Jewish Community Relations Council.
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He is also a member of many communal boards, including the executive committee and board of trustees of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, and the boards of UJA-Federation of Greater New York, the Jewish National Fund and the Memorial Foundation for Jewish Culture.
Other officers elected were Frost, JTA board chairman; Martin Fox of Newark, N.J., vice chairman of the board; Robert Arnow of New York, chairman of the executive committee; Bennett Aaron of Philadelphia, Raymond Epstein of Chicago, Nat Kameny of Bergenfield, N.J., Ben Zion Leuchter of Vineland, N.J., Melvin Swig of San Francisco, Bernice Tannenbaum of New York and Marshall Weinberg of New York, vice presidents; Phillip Ritzenberg of New York, secretary; Henry Everett of New York, treasurer; William Landau and Eleazar Lipsky, both of New York, past presidents; and Mark Seal, a native of Montreal, executive vice president.
In comments to the JTA board of directors after his election, Berman described JTA as an agency that faithfully, objectively and professionally covers the entire Jewish community and is owned by no one element within the community.
At the same time, he said, JTA has withstood the polarization and divisiveness that have increasingly come to dominate Jewish communal affairs.
Berman praised the outgoing president and committed himself to continue the tradition of excellence at JTA, which he said was the trademark of Frost’s tenure as JTA president.