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Celebrating JITC’s 15th Anniversary!

LinkedIn told me that today is my 15 year anniversary for starting JITC. This picture was taken right before I launched Jew in the City, so I’d have a new headshot.

Apparently I started JITC almost exactly 6 years after I survived the Sbarro’s bombing which I barely think about.

My husband and I just figured out that my grandfather (in the US) died hours after I survived the bombing. I asked my father if he knows if my grandfather lost consciousness before he died. Perhaps he was working out a deal from Above to make sure I got out of that restaurant in time.

I think because the terror attack was so quickly followed by his death (and a funeral that I didn’t make it home in time for) and 9/11 exactly a month later, where my husband was the one who had to reach me to let me know he had survived, that I never fully processed the attack.

Looking back on these 15 years since starting JITC, through times fearing fundraising, to moments of doubt, not knowing if this crazy idea to change how the world views Orthodox Jews would ever work, to raising seed money, learning how to run board meetings, growing a staff and finally, finally, bringing this message to Hollywood execs – I will say some very expected things and hopefully some profound ones:

  • Take risks
  • Bet on yourself
  • Remember that no one else who did something revolutionary knew she would be able to succeed until she did so
  • Our sages teach “In a place where there is no man, strive to be one.” You don’t have to be the perfect guy for the job. It is in the act of committing to fill the need that a huge piece is accomplished.
  • Remember that life is fragile, precarious, and that you were put here for a mission that no one else can accomplish, so get to work!
  • And your mission need not be loud and public, despite the way the larger world always lauds the most public things. In fact, according to Jewish thought, while public roles are a necessary evil, because God is hidden, hidden acts of greatness are the most precious.

In honor of our 15 year anniversary, we will feature some or our most popular content on the home page every week for the next 15 weeks. See how we’ve grown, matured and also stuck to the dream that launched our vision in 2007.

And since it’s Change Maker month, and I got over my fear of fundraising, I humbly ask you to change the world with us by changing the perception of religious Jews to those outside the community and those inside who had negative experiences.

If you found this content meaningful and want to help further our mission through our Keter, Makom, and Tikun branches, please consider becoming a Change Maker today.

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