From the Shalom Austin CEO: Reflecting on the Past and Envisioning the Future
A year ago, I began my tenure as CEO of Shalom Austin. I feel truly blessed to be in this role and serve our great community. As we approach Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, it is the appropriate time to reflect, celebrate our successes and envision what we can do together moving forward.
Despite the challenges that we face in an increasingly polarized world and the unfortunate rise in anti-Semitism, hate and bigotry, I am thankful for the leadership of our community members, Jewish professionals and clergy. I continue to be amazed by the strength and diversity of our community and the positive impact we are making on the greater Austin community.
When I arrived in 2013, there was great excitement about the future of the Dell Jewish Community Campus and the opening of the Generations Campaign. I am excited to announce that we achieved our first benchmark goal of $12.5 million toward the Generations Campaign! The remaining dollars raised will now be matched by the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation until we reach our final goal of $25 million.
As we move forward, we are doubling our efforts to raise the necessary funds to revitalize, modernize, and expand our campus by building on the best of the past, focusing on the present, and preparing for the future.
Why is it imperative to make this investment today? The answer is that the Jewish community has doubled over the past several years and growing at an exponential rate in tandem with the Austin population. It becomes essential that Shalom Austin, the hub of the Austin Jewish community, meet these expanding needs of our current and future members.
Our campus has served us well for the past 17 years, and now is the time to meet the challenge of the future. That requires services for children, teens, adults, and seniors, all part of our vital and vibrant community. In order to meet the needs of this growing and diverse population we need to upgrade our campus with new and improved services and facilities.
I am thrilled that our Generations campaign has reached our first goal. Now we must climb higher up the mountain and achieve the $25 million necessary to make the Shalom Austin campus a model for future generations, and we can only do this with your help. Thanks to the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation match, your contribution makes even more impact.
As we approach 5778, may we celebrate our successes, embrace our challenges and build the Jewish community that we strive to provide for ourselves and for future generations.
Wishing each of you a Shanah Tovah u’metukah, a happy, healthy and sweet new year.