News & Features
Q & A with Cloe Hakakian
A tip from a community security group led to the arrest of a Reseda man who allegedly "called for the mass murder of Jews."
Doing good should be ingrained in our daily lives. That’s why, when the Skirball Cultural Center approached our Federation to be a part of its first-ever off-site exhibit Be the Change: A Jewishly Inspired Public Art Movement, we jumped at the opportunity. The exhibit features six monuments designed by artists representing six different service-based organizations. It aims to physically and conceptually elevate the tzedakah box (an item traditionally found in Jewish homes and gathering places where money is collected for charity) as a sculptural form that can bring about community change.
Rabbi Noah Farkas, President & CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, and I discuss what the last year and a half has been like for him as he transitioned into the leadership role for one of the largest Jewish Federation in North America.
As we commemorate Juneteenth, which marks the day federal troops arrived in Galveston, Texas in 1865 to take control of the state and ensure that all enslaved people were freed, we make space to honor the end of chattel slavery in the United States while honoring the struggles of enslaved peoples.
Last Thursday night, over 1,200 community members came together for our Real Estate & Construction (REC) Dinner to honor Founder, CEO, and President at TruAmerica Multifamily Robert “Bob” Hart. It was a spectacular, record-breaking evening during which we raised over $3 million for our Jewish community.
A new mural by Iranian-Jewish muralist Cloe Hakakian honoring the Jewish community was unveiled in Pico-Robertson on Sunday. The mural was presented by LA vs Hate, an initiative of the Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations, in partnership with our Federation and ADL Los Angeles. The mural unveiling was part of LA vs Hate’s Summer of Solidarity, a unifying city-wide program that allows us to reflect on the diversity of our Jewish community while also capturing the cultural, historical, and spiritual influences that embody Jewish Los Angeles.
The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles is proud of its partnership with the Jewish Public Affairs Committee of California (JPAC). This year, we brought a delegation of 50 outstanding leaders, our largest to date, to JPAC’s premier annual event, Capitol Summit.
Established in 2006, Jewish American Heritage Month (JAHM) commemorates more than 350 years of Jewish history in America. In the face of an alarming rise in antisemitic attacks and rhetoric, it is more vital than ever to embrace Jewish identity and culture.
To commemorate Women’s History Month, we are excited to share the stories of Iranian women in our L.A. Jewish community who have been affected by violence and discrimination in Iran over the last six months.
We just returned from an urgent trip to Israel where we joined a delegation of 30 Federation lay and professional leaders from over 20 communities organized by The Jewish Federations of North America. We went to show solidarity and to advocate for a resolution to the ongoing judicial reform crisis. We heard repeatedly that our presence was desired, and our voices needed.
As organizations working on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) prepare their initiatives for 2023, many in the Jewish world are asking a tough question: Does DEI do more harm than good, especially for Jews?
Our Federation convened the community for an evening of powerful discussion in response to the recent antisemitic hate crimes that have rattled our sense of safety and self-expression. At YULA Boys High School, we brought 400 community members together to meet with elected officials, law enforcement, and Jewish community leaders.
Nearly a dozen billboards carrying messages denouncing antisemitism have sprung up across Los Angeles County, with organizers hoping that their messages of love can counter the spread of hate speech.
Our Federation stands in solidarity with the people of Iran as they fight for basic human rights. In early December, we took part in Baraye Iran, an impactful community-wide display of support for those fighting to make the country open and inclusive.
Hosted by the ADL Los Angeles, The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, and AJC Los Angeles, join us for a candidate forum for Los Angeles Mayor on Wednesday, October 26, 2022.
Our Federation is committed to strengthening relationships with like-minded civic partners to address the city's greatest challenges. Recently, we invited some of those civic partners to our sukkah to honor the key virtues of Sukkot.
Watch as our President & CEO Rabbi Noah Farkas speaks to CNN about combatting antisemitism
I visited Israel with our Vice Chair, Orna Wolens. Together, we explored the biggest challenges confronting Israel and the partnerships Federation has forged to address those challenges head on.
Our Federation clears the path for parents of Jewish children and teens across Los Angeles to send their kids to Jewish day school. Check out some of the students whose education we support as they enjoy their first day of the new school year.
For camp counselor Yakiv Berin, it isn’t just another day at sleep-away camp. It’s a welcome distraction from the horrors of war he and his family fled in Ukraine.
Our Federation made the news thanks to the amazing advocacy work of our Civic Engagement team! Together they helped secure funds that will go directly to help aid Jewish summer camps, strengthen security at local Jewish institutions, and more.
The Jewish community of Los Angeles has grown in both size and diversity, the 2021 Study of Jewish LA found. Since the last comprehensive study of Jewish Angelenos in 1997, the number of Jewish households has increased by 25% to a total nearing 300,000.
Two Los Angeles leaders, Federation Chief Program Officer Becky Sobelman-Stern and Federation Board Member Daniel Gryczman, traveled from the Ethiopian cities of Addis Ababa and Gondar to Israel to witness the reunification of 3,000 Ethiopian Jews with family members who previously made aliyah and had already started to be absorbed into Israeli society.
Watch as members of Federation’s Rautenberg New Leaders Project, or NLP, traveled to our state’s capital alongside JPAC (the Jewish Public Affairs Committee of California) to advocate on critical issues to the Jewish community.
After two years of virtual Passovers, NuRoots is going back to basics for this year’s Collective Escape.
It’s powerful and important for us to build bridges with non-Jewish communities. This week, as we welcome Passover, our video focuses on working together towards positive change.
Our Federation is deeply committed to our Jewish family in Ukraine and has mobilized to help them. Federation leadership, including President and CEO Rabbi Noah Farkas and General Campaign Chair Lynn Bider, traveled to the Ukrainian border to support the humanitarian effort.
Our President & CEO Rabbi Noah Farkas and General Campaign Chair Lynn Bider joined our partners for a special briefing on their recent journey to Ukraine’s border in Poland. Together they shared firsthand accounts of the heartbreaking and inspiring stories they saw there and how funds we've raised are having a major impact helping refugees.
Even in Los Angeles, it's not difficult to identify with the pain of the Ukrainian people. For Jews, the Russian invasion is all too familiar and at the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, fundraising efforts to help refugees have already brought in over $1.5 million.
This week, I focused on how our Federation and our partners care for our entire Jewish community. Across town or around the world, if Jews need help, we are there.
At home and abroad, the Federation cares for those in need and lifts up Jews of all backgrounds and abilities. Check out what I’m up to this week — and take a look inside our partnerships here in L.A.
There are so many people in Southern California with loved ones in the conflict zone. Some, like Anastasia Shostak, have family in both Russia and Ukraine.
Several hours after Odessa awoke to explosions Thursday morning, Avraham Wolff, the city’s chief rabbi, got a call from a nearly 90-year-old Holocaust survivor. The man was so distressed he could barely speak.
Just six days into his new job as CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, Rabbi Noah Farkas had found some time to make his office his own: Along with 30 still-packed boxes of books, the Plano, Texas, native made room for a Dallas Cowboys mini-helmet, a baseball he caught at a Dodgers game and a rock decorated by one of his kids to read “Abba rocks 2015.”
In the last few years, Jason Dice has been to more than 180 synagogues across Los Angeles. Dice recently scoped out a congregation in Beverly Hills.
After last weekend’s hostage standoff at a synagogue in Texas, local and federal authorities held a news conference Friday morning in Los Angeles to address safety concerns for local synagogues.
The events this past weekend at Congregation Beth Israel in Colleyville, Texas are a sobering reminder that antisemitism continues to plague Jewish communities here in Los Angeles and around the world. I am so incredibly grateful for the vital work of law enforcement officials, first responders, and community organizations who ensured that Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker and the other hostages were able to return home safely.
Today I join the more than 130 employees who dedicate themselves to support a kind, protected, and flourishing Jewish community here in Los Angeles and Israel. Since I came on board two months ago, I’ve had nearly 90 individual conversations with staff, leaders, and stakeholders and attended more than 20 events. I’d like to share with you some of what I have learned.
Over 15 months, from spring '22 through summer '23, this highly selective leadership program for passionate Jewish individuals will provide huge opportunities to grow skills through a mix of curated curriculum, hands-on experiential learning, mentorship, high-access professional networking, and an immersive trip to Israel. Participants will graduate with a deep understanding of how to lead systemic change in Jewish L.A. through philanthropy, nonprofit board service, and community partnerships.
NLP provides opportunities and training to elevate the next class of outstanding Jewish civic leaders, empowering participants to hone leadership skills and gain a deep understanding of L.A. Kicking off with a retreat in March '22, NLP continues with an advocacy trip to Sacramento and monthly sessions throughout the year where participants meet and learn from elected, civic, and community leaders and build relationships with peers.
Each year, we select eligible high school seniors to comprise and sustain a talent pool of Jewish young leaders for our community in perpetuity. The Brawerman Fellowship provides an annual $10,000 college scholarship — a total of $40,000 over four years — and participation in a larger program that builds leadership skills and further strengthens Fellows’ connection to Jewish life through retreats, a trip to Israel, and other overseas opportunities.
We stood strong and answered the call and now we are asking you to do the same.
Our Federation cares deeply about making the holidays special for every child ― especially those whose families may not be able to afford it. That’s why we activated our entire community and launched our 16th annual Festival of Lights Toy & Book Drive that provides new toys and books to kids of all ages.
On Sunday December 5th, our NuRoots Initiative for Young Adults partnered with the Jewish Food Society to celebrate the joys and significance of Jewish culture and Jewish food. Together with our special guest speakers, they shared stories about their favorite Hanukkah foods and the importance of preserving and revitalizing Jewish foods.
On Friday December 3rd in Grand Park, we convened elected officials including Mayor Eric Garcetti, our incoming President & CEO Rabbi Noah Farkas, and our civic partners from diverse racial and ethnic backgrounds for a powerful event that raised awareness about antisemitism and all forms of hate.
Our Federation continuously identifies and addresses our community’s greatest challenges and opportunities — locally and globally. Below are just a few recent examples of the powerful impact your support makes possible.
A supper club that includes a series of culinary experiences around L.A., that provides a space for the next generation of young Jewish leaders to connect, learn, and inspire.
Our Real Estate and Construction Network came together at The Beverly Hilton to hear from some of L.A.’s finest chefs, Eric Greenspan, Ari Rosenson, Jon Shook, and Sherry Yard.
Our President & CEO Jay Sanderson meets with other global leaders to address the needs of populations living in poverty
This year's Tour de Summer Camps was a huge success! We want to share our gratitude to the over 500 participants who came together to raise $1 million so every kid in our community has the opportunity to enjoy a transformative Jewish summer camp experience. We hope to see you next year.
It was wonderful to be back together as a community to reconnect, network, and hear from Timur Tecimer, CEO and owner of Overton Moore Properties, last Thursday morning at our Federation’s recently redeveloped BAR Center at the Beach.
We are proud to share this week’s Jewish Journal cover story that details the incredible journey of our President & CEO Jay Sanderson and the impact that our Jewish Federation has had on our entire Jewish community under his leadership.
This coming Sunday night, I will stand before almost 500 community lay and professional leaders, my family, and dear friends. They are coming from across this city, across the country, and Israel. This is an event to celebrate my leadership over the past 12 years. It will be a humbling experience.
On the heels of the High Holidays and Sukkot, and as we approach another Shabbat, I feel proud and grateful. When our community faced yet another antisemitic threat — this time in our schools — our Federation mobilized our partners and concerned local parents.
With gratitude, great respect, and some bittersweet emotions, we invite you to the upcoming Celebration of Leadership Honoring Jay Sanderson as he prepares to leave his post as President & CEO of our Federation at the end of this year. Join us to revel in his strong leadership, partnership, thoughtfulness, and vision that have guided our community for the past 12 years.
Tonight is the eve of Yom Kippur. I can already hear that beautiful melody of Kol Nidre — the same melody and the same words that my parents, grandparents, great-grandparents, and their ancestors experienced over the many past generations. As I enjoy those thoughts, there is one thought that transcends them all — Yom Kippur is the culmination of the Ten Days of Teshuvah. Teshuvah is often taken to mean repentance, but it also means “return.” That one thought starts with a question — “return” to what?
Twenty civic leaders representing city, county, state and federal government participated in The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles’ annual Rosh Hashanah gathering titled “Hear Our Voices: Reflections and Visions for the New Year A Rosh Hashanah Celebration With Civic Leaders” on Monday, Aug. 30.
We are thrilled to announce the next leader of The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles. After an extensive search, the Board of the Federation has voted and approved Rabbi Noah Farkas to be the next President & CEO. Rabbi Farkas’ official term will begin on January 1st, 2022, but he will begin working at the Federation in November. The Federation’s current President & CEO Jay Sanderson will continue to serve in that role through December 31st, 2021.
We are thrilled that The Jewish Federation’s 9th annual Tour de Summer Camps will be taking place in person on Sunday, October 31st! It’s always an amazing day, and this year’s event is going to be one we’ll always remember as we gather as a community once again. Take advantage of the $35 early bird registration fee and sign up now!
This important and timely event provided tools and facts about antisemitism — or as Ben described it, “anti-Jewish racism” — that can be used to have productive dialogue on social media. Ben reminded us that we are not alone in our fight against the hatred of the Jewish people, we do not need to keep our heads down, an d that the best way to fight hate is with great pride.
Since I returned from my short but impactful leadership and solidarity trip to Israel, I have heard the fears and concerns of many community members (from across Greater Los Angeles and of all ages and denominations with varying political points of view). The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles has been the bedrock of Jewish L.A. for over a hundred years, and we remain committed to being that bedrock for the next hundred years.
The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) is the largest public school system in California and the 2nd largest public school district in the United States. In September, the Los Angeles Teachers Union is expected to vote on a resolution urging the U.S. government to cut all aid to Israel. The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles strongly opposes this resolution.
Take your seat at our virtual table for a conversation with James Beard Award-winning chef Michael Twitty and Emerging Philanthropists Co-Chair Bryan Wasser to hear about how food is becoming more of a celebration of diversity and a comfort mechanism in Judaism and for the masses.
Our Federation's President & CEO Jay Sanderson visited the town of Ashkelon, where 500 rockets landed in just one day during the recent war. Our partners at the local Israel Trauma Coalition resiliency center are receiving hundreds of calls to help affected residents, especially children, now living in terror.
Shalom. Our Federation’s President & CEO Jay Sanderson, along with other Federation leaders from North America, are in Israel to see what‘s happening on the ground, how our Israeli partners have been impacted, and learn how we can all proactively build a safer, more inclusive, and fair future for all. Here Jay shares the personal reason behind why he has dedicated his life to protecting Israel.
I am writing to you from my seat on an El Al flight headed to Israel. After the frightening antisemitic acts of last week and after over 4,400 rockets rained over Israel, I am proud to be joining a small group of national leaders on a Jewish Federations of North America Leadership and Solidarity Mission.
We are deeply concerned about the dramatic rise in antisemitism and direct attacks on Jews worldwide. We condemn last night’s attack on Jews by a pro-Palestinian mob in a restaurant in West Hollywood. Our Community Security Initiative (CSI) is working directly with local law enforcement to make sure that the perpetrators are prosecuted to the full extent of the law.
The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles, in partnership with FACE, will hold a webinar on dispelling the Asian model myth minority stereotype, understanding and dismantling biases toward Asian-Americans, and examining how to best invest in social capital to enhance quality of life and relationships between our communities.
The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles is deeply committed to a strong and safe State of Israel. As our brothers and sisters again face an overwhelming onslaught of rocket fire from the South and rioting within Israel’s borders, we are working with our partners including the Israel Trauma Coalition (ITC) to provide timely and much-needed support, especially to the most vulnerable including frail elderly, families, and young children.
Zoom In for an exclusive and unmatched close up look at Israel's northern border with Lebanon and Syria. Our Jeep and drone experience will offer views and perspective you cannot get anywhere else - or any other way. The geopolitical complexities and global implications of the complex situation with Israel-Syria-Lebanon makes this a must-view experience!
Watch as luminary Noa Tishby and our Federation’s President & CEO Jay Sanderson engage in a fresh, 360-degree discussion about Israel and paint an accessible and dynamic portrait of a tiny country of outsized relevance.
Powered by our Federation’s NuRoots young adult initiative in partnership with Repair the World [werepair.org], our Vaccine Appointment Network is matching tech-savvy community members with eligible Angelenos who need assistance in securing a vaccine appointment. After we receive your request, we’ll connect you with a volunteer who will reach out to you by phone to walk you through the registration process.
Beginning on the evening of Wednesday, April 7th, and ending on the evening of Thursday, April 8th, Jewish communities throughout the world will commemorate Yom HaShoah — Holocaust Remembrance Day. It is a holy day — one in which we remember the approximately six million Jews who were murdered during the Holocaust. It is our sacred duty to remember the victims of the Holocaust.
Our most prominent Los Angeles city leaders wish you a healthy and joyous Passover with thoughts on the meaning of the holiday and hopeful messages for our Jewish future.
Our Federation cares for the mental health and well-being of all our community members. The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an alarming increase in mental health issues among our beloved young adults. Along with our dedicated partners, we are working hard to identify and address this issue.
We are joined by Israeli Master Chef Meir Adoni for an exclusive cooking workshop. Chef Adoni will bring us into his kitchen to learn first hand his take on Mediterranean cuisine. To make this program even more special, Chef Adoni is joined by Eran Weintraub, CEO of Latet Israel, a Federation partner organization working to fight hunger and food insecurity in Israel.
This year's Chai/Emerald/Zahav, Ruby & Lion of Judah Event takes us to Israel — virtually — for a once-in-a-life time visit inside the home of Rivka Saker, one of the foremost collectors and and a top-10 influencer in the Israeli art scene. While leading us through her stunning private collection that rivals the country's major art museums, Rivka will share her Jewish story and provide Jewish insight into Israeli art and culture
Join our Community Engagement Initiative, in partnership with Los Angeles Urban League and the Pat Brown Institute for Public Affairs, for a thoughtful discussion on the first 100 days of the new administration and the perspectives of the Black and Jewish communities in Los Angeles.
We are fast approaching an anniversary we all have to acknowledge but we aren't anxious to celebrate. We are reaching the one-year anniversary of this historic pandemic.
Inclusivity is paramount to our Federation and February is Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month (JDAIM). We are proud to feature our work with our partners at The Friendship Circle.
The Federation's Health Professionals Network for a conversation with Dr. David Swerdlow, Global COVID Vaccine Medical Lead at Pfizer, and moderated by Sarica Klein, PharmD.
We are here — especially in times of crisis — as we always have been throughout our 110 year history. We are committed, more than ever, to our mission of ensuring a secure and vibrant Jewish future.
Friends, neighbors, sisters, mot hers, daughters, granddaughters, nieces, mentors, and mentees gathered for the multigenerational International Lion of Judah Conference.
Thank you for your strong support in 2020 for the health, welfare, security and sustainability of our beloved Jewish community. Together, we were able to make a powerful impact during this historic pandemic.
As we prepare for Shabbat after the tragic violence, senseless loss of life, and assault on our democracy on the steps of our nation’s Capitol Building, we reflect on a prayer we recite during Shabbat services.
Our Federation’s President & CEO Jay Sanderson recently joined President of Tribe Media/Jewish Journal David Suissa on his podcast to discuss the future of our local and global Jewish community.
As a year unlike any other comes to a close, we want to share this Jewish Journal article with you that highlights our Federation’s tireless and essential work on behalf of the Jewish community.
One in five people in Los Angeles — including Jewish young adults — doesn’t have enough to eat and we’re teaming up with Swipe Out Hunger to respond to these needs. Gift cards are immediately available to redeem at grocery stores and through meal delivery services. Additional resources a re available for longer-term situations and non-Jewish community members.
The Federation, along with their partners at IKAR, organized and connected a vast network of synagogues and rabbis throughout the city to create a one-of-a-kind event. It brought together Jews across Los Angeles to observe one of our most cherished traditions.