Anonymous Spreadsheet Shines Light On Jewish Professionals’ Salaries


Professionals at Jewish organizations are adding their titles and salaries to
a spreadsheet being circulated online by activists “working to remove
gender bias from hiring.”

More than 500 people have added their salaries and other job details to
the spreadsheet, which was created on Nov. 15 and picked up speed
starting Monday.

The project is run by Rabbi Rebecca Sirbu and Sara Shapiro-Plevan,
who last year co-wrote an article for noting
that woman are under-represented among the top earners in Jewish
organizations. Their Gender Equity in Hiring in the Jewish Community
Project is, according to its Facebook page, “working to remove gender
bias from hiring processes in Jewish organizational life in order to help
women rise to positions of leadership.” Rabbi Sirbu and Shapiro-Plevan could not immediately be reached for comment.

They and others have advocated for greater transparency about pay
scales and for closing discrepancies between nonprofit executives and those lower down on the organizational chain of command.

Entries in the spreadsheet span a range of titles, including “Chief Executive Officer,” “Vice President, International Org.,” “Program Manager,” “Rabbi” and “Jewish Day School Educator,” among others.

With columns for participants to include data on job titles, years in the field and at the organization, hours worked per week, bonuses and benefits, organization size and budget, and gender, the spreadsheet offers an expansive look at salaries in the Jewish organizational field; it is a field which, in recent years, has come under scrutiny for a lack of transparency about pay scales and for major discrepancies between executives and those lower down on the organizational chain of command.

The spreadsheet also comes amid a trend of industry-specific spreadsheets asking people to share salary information. Similar spreadsheets have appeared in recent weeks for journalists and for employees at the office coworking space company, WeWork.

Like other spreadsheets of its kind, this one attracted far more entries from women than men. There were approximately 344 entries by women and about 96 entries by men, excluding those who did not work full-time, at the time of publication.

The highest salary on the list for Jewish professionals was $312,000 for a female VP of development at an organization based in New York City with a budget of $40 million and a staff of 140. The second highest salary was $260,000 for a male senior rabbi at a synagogue in the Midwest with a budget of over $5 million.

Among those earning the lowest salaries for full time work were a female public relations coordinator with four years of experience earning $29,000 at an organization with a budget of $4 million in Toledo, Ohio; an assistant teacher, also female, at a Jewish day school with a budget of $36 million earning $34,000; and a development associate, also female, at an organization with a staff of 150 in a “large metro area” earning $38,000.

Based on a basic analysis of the data provided in the spreadsheet, the average entry in the spreadsheet for a man posted a salary of $95,150.52. The average salary for an entry by a woman was $85,052.09. Those averages excluded entries in which the employee’s gender was not noted, in which the employee worked fewer than 30 hours, and for employees outside of the United States.

The entries, which are anonymous, have not been verified by The Jewish Week. 

Ed’s note: This piece was updated on Nov. 27 with the updated spreadsheet numbers.