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JF&CS welcomes Jill Belsky as new Board President for 2019-2021

Jewish Family & Children’s Service (JF&CS) is pleased to welcome Jill Belsky as its board president for the 2019 – 2021 term. Jill has served on the JF&CS board for 9 years, including positions as Treasurer and Chair of Agency Services. Over the past year, she has been instrumental in launching a JF&CS brand refresh that is scheduled for completion in summer of 2019. In this role, she’ll be working alongside the organization’s new CEO, Miriam Seidenfeld, who joined the staff in February of 2019.

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Starting conversations about the last thing we want to talk about

Rabbi Jessica Shafrin would like to start a conversation even if she knows that the topic of death isn’t one people are always eager to broach. That’s where the Conversation Project comes in. Over the past year, the Kol Rinah congregant has been hosting workshops around the community, including a recent one this month at Congregation Shaare Emeth, to get people thinking about the inevitable.

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Longtime JF&CS leader looks back on 30 years of service

Before L. Louis Albert and Jewish Family & Children’s Service opened a food pantry in 1991, he described it as a “pilot project to demonstrate the idea that it’s easy to provide direct assistance to Jewish families. We hope to maintain and expand the food pantry and make it permanent.”

As Albert, 67, prepares to leave the organization, he spoke with the Jewish Lightabout his almost 30-year tenure and what he thinks the future holds for himself and the organizations’ clients.

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JF&CS launches financial support during federal shutdown

Jewish Family & Children’s Service is working to make emergency funding available for members of the St. Louis Jewish community who have been affected by the federal shutdown.

“Due to the unexpected burden the government shutdown has placed on federal workers in the Jewish community, JF&CS will be working closely with the Jewish Federation to provide emergency assistance to those in need starting immediately,” JF&CS announced in a news release.

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Jewish Family & Children’s Service Welcomes New CEO Miriam Seidenfeld

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St. Louis, MO — Jewish Family & Children’s Service of St. Louis (JF&CS) is pleased to announce that its Board of Directors has appointed Miriam Seidenfeld as Chief Executive Officer effective February 04, 2019. After a rigorous national search, Miriam has been chosen to succeed L. Louis Albert in the role, which he has occupied for over 29 years. Mr. Albert will be stepping down as CEO but will continue to serve as a consultant for the agency over the coming months.

“This is an ideal time to welcome Miriam as our next CEO,” remarked Board President Stephen Green.  “Over the past 29 years the agency has grown and evolved immensely. In addition to our core counseling services, the agency added the Harvey Kornblum Jewish Food Pantry, which now feeds over 6,500 community members each month and the Child Abuse Prevention Program which reaches over 30,000 students each year.  The needs of our community are increasing and changing and our financial and operational resources are evolving.  We look forward to Miriam’s visionary leadership, experience and energy as she works with our qualified staff and other local agencies to identify the challenges and further increase the positive impact JF&CS has on the lives of those in need in our community.”

Ms. Seidenfeld has more than 25 years of experience working with children and families in non-profit settings, and 15 years of non-profit leadership experience. While Executive Director of Temple Israel in Minneapolis, the eighth largest Reform congregation in the U.S., she oversaw a $30M capital and endowment campaign, supervised a $20M building project, and led the development and implementation of an ambitious new strategic plan. Before her time with Temple Israel, she directed an innovative career development program for middle and high school youth living in the most underserved neighborhoods in New York City. Her skills in fundraising, strategic planning, management, and operations will guide JF&CS as it expands to meet the changing and growing needs of the community.

Ms. Seidenfeld has spent the majority of her career in Minneapolis and New York City, receiving her Bachelor of Science Degree in Human Relations from the University of Minnesota and her Master of Science in Social Work from Columbia University. She is looking forward to making St. Louis her home.

“I am thrilled to be part of the next chapter of Jewish Family & Children’s Service’s uplifting story. I am honored to have been selected to lead this prominent organization that has impacted the lives of so many people over its 150-year history. I am eager to meet and learn from all who are willing to share their knowledge and experiences of the St. Louis community – and to work together to continue providing compassionate support and innovative solutions to those facing life’s challenges.”

The Board of Directors at JF&CS welcomes Ms. Seidenfeld and looks forward to her tenure as CEO.

For generations, Jewish Family & Children’s Service has offered compassionate support and practical solutions to help people in our community navigate life’s challenges. JF&CS and its licensed, professional staff assist the elderly, protect children at risk, provide food and services for the needy, resolve family problems and enhance Jewish connections. We serve those in need regardless of age, race, religion, ethnicity, gender or sexual orientation.

Letters to the editor: Dec. 12, 2018

JF&CS launches pilot program of ‘Conversation Project’. The Jewish Light’s Nov. 28 article “Having Dinner, Talking Death”(part of Editor Ellen Futterman’s News & Schmooze column) informs readers about the Conversation Project, a national initiative encouraging individuals to speak with their loved ones about their goals for end-of-life care.

We are so pleased the Light is spreading the word about this critical issue, since the stigma surrounding these conversations leaves many families in the dark until it is too late.

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