As we enter the month of Elul, a time on the Jewish calendar for reflection and accountability, it is incumbent on us to reaffirm our organizational values and restate our commitment to a JDC workplace, and wider Jewish community, defined by equity, safety, respect, diversity, and inclusion.
We therefore repeat our unequivocal condemnation of recent public attacks on Sarah Eisenman, JDC’s Assistant Executive Vice President and Executive Director of JDC Entwine, a valued and accomplished senior woman professional at JDC for more than 18 years. We also uphold our obligation to ensure a safe environment for JDC staff, and those who apply for positions at our organization.
We are taking steps now, including an internal review by an ad-hoc Committee of the Board that will study the circumstances of the incident and the organization’s response, to ensure such inappropriate actions, which have no place at JDC, are not repeated. We will build off the work we’ve done in recent years developing and deploying robust policies and trainings protecting our professionals from harassment and other unacceptable behaviors by Board Members, colleagues, and others. These measures promote an organizational culture that fosters excellence, mutual respect, and the critical role of women’s leadership. This work is ongoing and is especially meaningful given the proud history of women’s leadership at JDC in the past and today.
At the heart of our global work for the last 106 years is our commitment to the inherent value we place on every human life. We learn from our tradition we are created b’tzelem elohim, in the Divine image. It is therefore our duty, responsibility, and legacy to uphold that ideal and carry forward our work assuring the dignity and welfare of all those in the JDC family.