By Beth A. Warner, Frances Bunzl Chief Philanthropy Officer
Growing up Jewish in Bangor, Maine was a tremendous life lesson in the power of community. The state’s Jewish population was/is tiny, and I was almost always the only Jewish kid in my class. But as a fourth-generation Jewish “Mainer”, my parents and grandparents instilled in me a strong Jewish identity and connection through active participation in our synagogue, JCC, and Jewish day and overnight camps.
When I moved to Atlanta in 2000, it was a relief to finally experience a large, thriving and diverse Jewish community. My daughters were able to go to MJCCA camps, attend the Davis Academy and Weber School, and become b’not mitzvah at Temple Emanu-El. Following my parents’ lead, I got involved too, volunteering at the synagogue and schools and weaving myself into the fabric of Atlanta’s Jewish life.
With so many ways to engage, I could see that Jewish Atlanta was built on a foundation of philanthropy and volunteerism – the result of the dedication and vision of the men and women who created this community. With gratitude to them, it is my privilege to be the lead professional for Federation’s 2022 Community Campaign in partnership with lay leaders Debbie Kuniansky, Joel Arogeti, and hundreds of volunteers, and it is my honor to ask you for your support.
We owe the philanthropic architects of modern Jewish Atlanta so much. They are the reason our metro area now boasts more than 40 synagogues, a world-class JCC, an impactful Jewish Family & Career Services, nurturing Jewish day schools, an inspiring Breman Jewish Heritage Museum, and a caring support network for older adults through Jewish HomeLife.
When hard times come, we’re built to respond. When people need financial help, food, counseling, or connection, we’re built to deliver. When Israel is threatened, we have the infrastructure to help. When the world needs repair, Jewish Atlanta is ready.
This is why our community pays tribute to the generous “can do” spirit of those who came before us, which drives each of us to do good every day. Your support for the Campaign is the very best way to ensure that their vision will continue.
Working together, we can keep Jewish Atlanta strong, forward-looking, and ready for the next generation. Please make your gift today.