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Hannah Rosenthal to head Milwaukee Jewish Federation, No longer Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Antisemitism

press release


[Editor's note: The following is a press release form the Milwaukee Jeiwsh Federation released in July 2012.]

The Milwaukee Jewish Federation has appointed Hannah Rosenthal as its new CEO/President. The appointment follows an extensive national search conducted in collaboration with The Jewish Federations of North America Mandel Center for Leadership Excellence.

Rosenthal is currently serving as the Special Envoy to Monitor and Combat Anti-Semitism at the U.S. State Department, and will join the Federation this fall.

Sparked by the work and experience of her father, a rabbi and Holocaust survivor, and her own experience studying to become a rabbi, Rosenthal has led a life marked by a passion for social justice.

Before joining the State Department, Rosenthal was executive director of the Chicago Foundation for Women, where she led one of the largest women's funds in the world. Prior to that, she spent five years as the executive director of the Jewish Council for Public Affairs, where she worked on domestic and international policy for the organized Jewish community in North America.

Rosenthal also served as Midwest regional director of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services during the Clinton Administration. Rosenthal attended graduate school for rabbinical studies at Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem and Los Angeles, and holds a bachelor’s degree in religion from the University of Wisconsin.

“We were looking for somebody who would be a champion for the process that we’ve been going through as a community. We heard loud and clear that our organization should be, first and foremost, a fundraising organization and a convener. If we could have invented the perfect leader to lead the Federation now, it would be Hannah Rosenthal,” said Jerry Benjamin, chair of the Board at the Federation.

Dan Bader, who led the Federation’s CEO Search Committee, echoed Benjamin’s enthusiasm. “We hired Hannah Rosenthal because she understands the vision for where the Federation wants to go and has the leadership skills necessary to get us there,” he said. “She has tremendous talent and strong leadership experiences in many areas.”

“Hannah Rosenthal is an exceptional and inspired choice to help lead the Milwaukee Jewish Federation,” added Jerry Silverman, president and CEO of JFNA. “With her extensive background in fundraising, deep Jewish communal ties locally and nationally, and global experience, Hannah will help the community grow for generations to come.”

The JFNA Mandel Center for Leadership Excellence provides a full range of Federation executive talent acquisition and transition services. Since January 2010, the Mandel Center has successfully conducted searches for and placed 26 new Federation CEOs.


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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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