JUF's "Women's Division" has a new name: "Women's Philanthropy."
"We have grown to feel more empowered, to have a bigger presence," said Hilary Greenberg, president of JUF's Women's Board. "We really feel the name reflects women's new position and place-- at the forefront.
"Women are now in three of the top leadership positions in JUF," she noted, referring to JUF 2021 General Campaign Chair Kim Shwachman, JUF Board Chair Pam Friend Szokol, and JUF Overall Planning and Allocations Committee Chair Wendy Abrams, who also is a former National Women's Philanthropy Chair of the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA).
Part of the impetus of the local name change was to bring it into alignment with JFNA's nomenclature at the national level.
When JFNA started using the term 'Women's Philanthropy,' Greenberg said, the new name "changed the culture, and helped raise funds nationally. Confidence grew--strength grew-- with the new name."
The change also aligns with the women's departments of federations across the country. "Many communities have switched the name of their women's cohort to Women's Philanthropy, or established it with that name at the outset," said Abrams. A past president and campaign vice president of JUF's Women's Board, she is now an honorary director.
A survey of other cities' Federations found, Greenberg said, that "some 90 percent of other Federations across the country call their women's departments 'Women's Philanthropy.'"
"The name 'Women's Division' has served us very well," Greenberg said, "but 'philanthropy' means 'love of humankind.'"
She added that one more factor that influenced the timing of the change: "Coming out of COVID is the right time for fresh beginnings," Greenberg said.
Overall, the new name "better describes what we do, and who we are," Abrams concluded. "It's a better way to present ourselves, and a better explanation of what our purpose is."