Last week at our gala, we revealed the ten Jewish women social entrepreneurs who make up the first cohort of The Collective. These rockstars are motivated by their Jewish values to find innovative ways of moving the needle on issues impacting women and girls in the United States, Israel, and worldwide. Learn more about each of these impactful women here!

Beatrice Kahn, President of the National Council of Jewish Women was honored  with the first Peggy Tishman z”l Leadership Award, given to a committed volunteer leader who is an advocate for gender justice and social innovation. An accomplished professional and passionate philanthropist, Beatrice has written and spoken widely about ending sex trafficking. Beatrice is a generous mentor, offering opportunities openhandedly, and advice liberally. She is inspired by her values to make an impact and create social change. Beatrice leads with her feet and her pocketbook; with her heart and her head. In her honor, JWFNY is providing a donation to an organization of her choice.

Stephanie Blumenkranz, Director of The Hadassah Foundation  received the inaugural Nancy Schwartz Sternoff z”l Leadership Award, given to a Jewish communal professional whose work exhibits excellence in the field of gender equity. Stephanie had a meaningful relationship with Nancy and looked to her as a mentor. Stephanie is fiercely committed to women’s empowerment, which is evident in both her professional and volunteer roles. Stephanie previously served as Associate Director at JWFNY. She is a board member of the Women’s City Club and a Global Circle Steering Committee member of American Jewish World Service. JWFNY is thrilled to offer Stephanie funding to use toward her professional development.
JWFNY Board Chair Debbie Cosgrove and Jessica Abo

The power of Jewish values, seen through a gender lens, to drive change was highlighted again to close the evening program. JWFNY Board Chair Debbie Cosgrove led a “fireside chat” with award-winning journalist and author Jessica Abo in a conversation, at times emotional and at others amusing, exploring how formative experiences and family history can shape a young girl and create a purposeful life pursuing social good, justice and empowerment. Jessica described how her own ancestry story gave her a deep appreciation early on of human adversity and struggle, and the power of family and community to create circles of compassion and support that to this day fuel her work in activism and philanthropy.

We thank everyone who attended and supported our Gala, and we look forward to seeing you at our upcoming Annual Meeting on May 29th from 5:00-6:30pm. The event is free and open to the public. The invitation/RSVP info are below. We hope to see you there!