New Governing Structure Adopted by ARJE Board

Following the ARJE’s year-long process of reflection and conversation about the needs of our organization as we look to the future, the Board has adopted a new leadership structure designed to support our mission and increase our efficiency and effectiveness.

The new structure combines the elements of the governing board and the operational teams into one streamlined system of committees that, together with increased input from staff, will guide and execute the work of the ARJE going forward.

“Our previous structure was the right thing for its time, and it served us extremely well for many years,” said ARJE President Dr. Kathy Schwartz, RJE. “The changing needs of our members, including the amount of time they have to conduct the work of the organization, requires a new way of operating together as we look to the work we want to do going forward.”

The reflective and visioning work, as well as the work of determining the details of restructuring, were undertaken with the advice and counsel of ARJE’s outside consultant, Jill Goldenberg.

Some of the changes adopted require changes to the ARJE constitution. These changes will be put before membership in April. In addition, the Board anticipates that it will take approximately two years to make a full transition from the existing structure to the new one.

“The new structure recombines our committees and refocuses our work,” said First Vice-President Marisa Kaiser, RJE. “Existing committee work will continue as we institute the new structure. After mid-April the location of the work within the new structure will become clearer as we undertake the work of transition.”

Some key elements of the new structure include:

  • Establishing four constitutionally mandated committees that oversee the key work required of the Board, in keeping with the way typical non-profit boards operate. These committees are Development, Finance, Governance, and Support & Evaluation.
  • Establishing three additional committees to oversee membership and to support the three elements of our mission: to serve as the voice of Reform Jewish Education; to advance the professional of the Jewish educator; and to inspire excellence in Jewish education.
  • Creating a new group, Va’ad, to replace the current Executive Committee. Made up of ARJE elected officers and other Trustees as appointed by the President with the concurrence of the Board, the Va’ad will operate in an advisory capacity. In addition, a Past Presidents’ Council will also serve in an advisory role.

A full description of each of these Board committees is available here for download.