President and CEO of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh Brian Schreiber has been tapped to help leadership at the JCC Association of North America as it begins to strategize and strategically plan for the future of the JCC movement as a whole.
Schreiber will serve as special adviser to JCC Association president and CEO Doron Krakow starting in November. In his role at the JCC Association, he will act as a “resource and connector” between the national association and individual JCCs and will offer advice based on his nearly 20 years of experience as a sitting executive at the Pittsburgh JCC.
During his 90-day sabbatical, a team of professional and lay leaders will take over day-to-day operations of the community center in Squirrel Hill.
For Krakow, the JCC Association is at a “meaningful juncture,” as they are beginning to form action plans to best evolve alongside the Jewish community and continue to serve as one of the most significant points of contact for Jewish life.
“We have an increasingly clear understanding of the vision [for the future of the movement], but being able to take a vision and bring it to life through implementation is going to require a lot of thought and careful planning,” Krakow said. “We’ll be using this time that Brian will be working here to evolve specific plans for how to make ourselves into a better version of ourselves.”
Over the next few months, Schreiber and Krakow will work together to plan the agenda and make sure he is prepared and properly equipped once he arrives in Manhattan. At the same time, Schreiber and JCC leadership will be working to prepare for his absence.
The board, which includes 27 people, has been very supportive of the endeavor, both because it would help Schreiber professionally and the mission of the JCC as a whole.
“Brian will provide service and guidance to the JCC field and bring the work of the continental JCC Association closer to Pittsburgh,” Jimmy Ruttenberg, chair of the board, said in a press release. “The Pittsburgh JCC benefits by being part of a strong national movement that serves as a central resource for our field.”
Before coming to the JCC, Schreiber served for six years as director of the annual funding campaign for the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, and prior to that at The Associated: Jewish Community Federation of Baltimore.
During his time at the JCC, Schreiber has grown agency endowment funds from $1 million in 1999 to more than $19 million and has doubled revenue over the past 17 consecutive years, according to a press release from the JCC Association.
This opportunity provides a welcome chance to step back — this will be the first time in his nearly 20-year JCC career that he will not be involved in the day-to-day operations of the organization, he said — and think about “the vision and the strategy and the purpose” of the JCC.
At the start of his tenure at the JCC, Schreiber said he was on the other side of this situation and watched as the organization received help from an experienced outside professional who offered an extra “hand, advice, counsel and expertise.”
Now that Krakow has reached out for “additional expertise and support,” Schreiber said he feels humbled, nervous and excited all at once.
“I believe that Doron [Krakow] has a great deal of vision,” he said. “The strength of [the JCC Association] will come back to help Pittsburgh in the short and the long term.” PJC