Interview with founder of Capital Jewish Forum
>>Mon Jul 12, 2010
The “It” Spot for Jewish Professionals: The Capital Jewish Forum
Australian Jewish Leader Develops Venture at PresenTense Jerusalem Institute
July 8, 2010, JERUSALEM—
While serving as the Executive Officer for the B’nai B’rith Anti-Defamation Commission in Australia, Manny Waks observed that many of his young adult peers were disengaged from the organized Jewish community, which is centered around synagogues, day schools, and Israel advocacy.
Waks, now Vice President of the Jewish community in Canberra (Australia’s capital), decided to build a different Jewish communal model that would better appeal to young professionals like himself.
He founded the Capital Jewish Forum (CJF) in August 2009 to promote discussion and engagement with intellectuals, dignitaries and leaders on topics which are of relevance to Jewish academic, policy and business professionals. He is further developing his project this summer as a Summer Fellow at the PresenTense 2010 Global Institute in Jerusalem.
Launched by Mr. Mark Dreyfus MP at the Australian Parliament House, the CJF recently established its Board of Advisers, which is chaired by Assoc. Prof. Danny Ben-Moshe and includes among its members Mr. Dreyfus, Mr. Jeremy Jones AM, Mr. Bob Magid, Mr. Gad Ben-Ari, and Ambassador Martin Indyk.
The CJF, a non-partisan organization, provides a means of engagement through “a secure and inclusive environment for Jewish professionals whose personal perspectives are welcomed, indeed encouraged,” according to Waks.