2014 Accomplishments

Community Building and Engagement

  • Over 10,000 visitors to the Federation’s Bronfman Family JCC in 2014.
  • Total Financial Resource Development efforts successfully raised over $1.3 million in support of Federation, community and international programs and services.
  • Illusions & Elixirs – our largest single fundraising event ever –honored Joe Scher, bringing together over 125 people and raising over $250,000 (gross) for Jewish Family Service.
  • The Annual Jewish Festival was a great success with an estimated 4,000 attendees. 
  • Over $32,000 was granted to local organizations to support their programs/services, and encourage Jewish experiences and build community.
  • Programming at the Federation’s Bronfman Family Jewish Community Center continues to grow, including new and ongoing Senior, Adult, Children, and Teen classes offered on a regular basis, providing unique programming for all ages.
  • Jewish Women’s Network (JWN) was launched to expand and re-ignite our Women’s Division.  Now hosting monthly morning Coffee Hours and evening Cocktail Parties, the group is over 200 strong.
  • Men’s Division hosted a breakfast for 40 men with guest speaker, Gili Ovadia, head of the Israel Economic Mission to the West Coast.
  • Federation Flags hung on State Street over Labor Day Weekend in advance of the High Holy Days.
  • Local media coverage included print and broadcast coverage of special events such as Federation’s “Remember Our Boys” community-wide memorial service for three slain Israeli teens, and a special presentation about security and terrorism in Israel today.  A variety of print pieces covered everything from the Flags on State Street and Art at the JCC to community celebrations and charitable outreach efforts.  A new media partnership with TV Santa Barbara was established, and they are airing our “Your Gift Matters” video regularly throughout the year.
  • A new, enhanced website was launched to increase awareness, visibility and communication for the Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara.
  • With the talent and expertise of producer Claudia Lapin, we created the dynamic and touching three-and-a-half minute “Your Gift Matters” video.
  • “Zingt Zhe Kinder!”  A Yiddish Folk Music Legacy CD by Lorraine Gutenplan Silverberg Klein, produced by Mike Witt, was released.  All proceeds benefit the Jewish Federation.
  • Welcomed Rabbis, authors, security experts from Israel and more to the Bronfman Family JCC to provide ongoing engagement and educational opportunities.

National & International Engagement

  • In response to global emergencies, Federation raised nearly $40,000 in support of the Israel Emergency Campaign, and an additional $5,000 for emergency relief efforts in the Ukraine.
  • Immediate Past President, Lauren Katz, was nominated and accepted as a member of the National Women’s Philanthropy Board.
  • Eleven members of our Young Adult Division (YAD) attended the bi-annual Tribefest Conference in New Orleans.
  • Four leadership, two staff members, and one UCSB student represented Santa Barbara at the General Assembly in Maryland.  “Feed the Funk”, our YAD summer concert program, was featured as a “Fedovation” and presented by Andrew Schydlowsky.
  • Four Lion of Judah women joined together in New York for the International Lion of Judah Conference (ILOJC) where Lee Luria was honored with the national Kipnes-Wilson Friedland Award.
  • Federation leadership hosted a special reception for Birthright Israel raising funds to sponsor half a bus for post-college students in the summer of 2015. 
  • Established a new partnership relationship with Mitzpe Ramon in Southern Israel. This partnership will focus on sharing community resources and knowledge, learning side-by-side and establishing long-term relationships.
  • Through the underwriting of a generous donor, Federation partnered with Step Up For Israel, to bring an Israel Advocacy and Education program specifically designed for pre-teens, teens and young adults to learn about the key and critical issues facing Israel and the Jewish people.  The program is being implemented in collaboration with CBB and Hillel.

Jewish Family Service (JFS) – Counseling, Family & Volunteer Programs

  • Added a new permanent staff member to JFS to focus on Clinical Programs & Senior Services, as well as an additional LCSW contract clinician (Licensed Clinical Social Worker), an LPCC Intern (Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor) working on licensing hours, and an MFT/AT (Marriage & Family Therapy and Art Therapy) trainee from Phillips Graduate Institute, all supporting an expanding client base.
  • Restructured the Senior Visitation Program to increase the number of visitors & homebound senior visitees.
  • Increased active collaborations with other Santa Barbara Community agencies & programs.
  • Jewish Family Service hosted three educational programs providing continuing education credits for community professionals.
  • Contracted a new Insurance Biller which has increased our reimbursement rate over prior years.
  • Continued to engage local families through family-friendly programming, including the Family Purim Party, Fall Holiday Celebration, and the Chanukah Party which drew over 100 attendees.
  • Added new Family and JCC programming including a Prenatal and Postpartum Yoga class, Dance and Relaxation classes, and an Introductory Financial Planning Roundtable.
  • Received a grant to expand PJ Library to children up to age 8. We currently have over 190 children participating in this program, provided in partnership with the Harold Grinspoon Foundation.
  • Over 100 volunteers help to support Federation activities and programs, lead classes, visit homebound seniors, and give their time to strengthen our community.

Portraits of Survival & Upstanders

  • This year was highlighted with a celebration of the 10th Anniversary of Portraits of Survival, honoring our local Survivors, UCSB Chancellor Henry Yang and Mara Vishniac Kohn. Over 180 guests joined together at the Federation’s Bronfman Family JCC.  The anniversary event included a commemoration program for Kristallnacht and marked the opening of a very unique art exhibit featuring the works of local Holocaust survivors. 
  • Over 1,000 students representing schools from as far away as San Diego, as well as police officers, civic groups, local colleges, and various community leaders participated in the Portraits of Survival/Upstanders Program with docent-led tours.  Increased outreach efforts are bringing in new groups and reestablishing relationships with community groups who have not visited in some time. 
  • “Six Million Coins”, sponsored by Mount Sinai Memorial Parks & Mortuaries, brought the community together through the Federation to collect coins to provide programming and resources for our local survivors, raising awareness for these needs.  Working together with the local synagogues, Camp Haverim, and others, over 120,000 coins were collected locally to support Federation services for Holocaust survivors.
  • Important revisions and additions were successfully installed in the Portraits exhibit room and will permanently remain in place.  These include a revised and corrected map of Europe, as well as memorial plaques for those participants in the exhibit who have passed away. 
  • The continued collaboration with the UCSB Department of Film and Media Studies resulted in further student filming of survivors, as well as the editing of existing material, which yielded a number of new short films to be used in conjunction with the Portraits/Upstanders Program.
  • Staff continues to assist local survivors with restitution programs, helping to determine their eligibility for monies owed to them from foreign governments for what they endured during the Holocaust.  With new programs being announced, the timing of this effort is crucial.  JFS has begun to engage with community organizations in Los Angeles, as well as local attorneys who have offered to assist with this important endeavor.

Women’s Division

  • Women’s Division hosted two major fundraising events.  The Lion of Judah and Pomegranate High Tea was attended by nearly 40 women with guest speaker and reporter, Linda Scherzer.  The Women’s Philanthropy Luncheon, honoring Adele Rosen as our 2014 Women of Valor, was attended by over 125 women, with guest speaker and TED Talks executive, Ronda Carnegie.
  • Women’s Division held a special campaign, Friends for Futbol, and raised over $6,000 to help with the assimilation of the Iquitos, a small Peruvian Jewish community, which has collectively made aliyah to Israel.
  • Women’s Division introduced Lunafest to the community.  Attended by over 100 people, Lunafest is a film event featuring global, award-winning “shorts” made by, for and about women.
  • Partnering with Jewish Family Service, Women’s Division spearheaded two collection drives. Delicious Passover shopping bags were filled with kosher treats for our local seniors and “Baskets of Love” were enormous gift baskets filled with snacks, jams, teas, cuddly socks, hats, scarves, books, and more for homebound and needy seniors for the December holidays.
  • JWN chartered a bus full of excited women on their first all-day excursion to the Skirball Cultural Center. President Uri Hersher greeted the group, and the docent led tour of the Visions and Values Exhibit was outstanding.

Young Adult Division

  • Young adults baked challahs at “Baking a Difference”, with one to take home and one to donate to a senior of the Santa Barbara Village.
  • Shabbat Across America was celebrated with a pot-luck Shabbat at the Federation and three additional Shabbat Pot Lucks were held throughout the year.
  • For Mishlo’ach Manot, YAD assembled Purim baskets with children’s cards made by second grade Hebrew school students from CBB, fruit donated from Food from the Heart, as well as other delicious goodies.  The Baskets were distributed by volunteers to seniors of Santa Barbara Village.
  • Purim, Passover, Sukkot and Lag B’Omer were all marked by special events.
  • “Feed the Funk” hit a new high this year with attendance doubled over the prior year, with great press coverage featuring this community-wide event.
  • The annual Sushi Saki Sumo Sukkah Party was held in the Federation’s sukkah.
  • The annual Vodka Latke was held at the Art Foundry, which was a huge success with over 120 attendees.

Art at the JCC

  • The Abstract Art Collective Exhibit broke records for most attended and most art sold with Art @ the JCC.
  • SB Art Association, SB Printmakers and the Abstract Art Association presented juried shows in 2014, through the Art @ the JCC program, along with the special Holocaust Survivor Art Show.
  • Over 600 people attended Art @the JCC Opening Receptions.

Building Improvements

  • Federation secured two key grants, and together with local support, completely remodeled the Community Kosher Kitchen.
  • A new Outdoor Children’s Play Area was installed, including a soft floor surface and climbing equipment.


Santa Barbara Village

  • Santa Barbara Village (SBV), founded in 2010 in collaboration with United Way Santa Barbara, the Center for Successful Aging, and the Area Agency for Aging, has been operating under the fiscal sponsorship of Jewish Federation since its inception.
  • SBV, which provides services and resources to help seniors live independently, is now teaming up with Community Partners, their new fiscal sponsor.
  • Jewish Federation is very proud of our work with SBV and the tremendous impact they continue to make in helping local seniors engage with each other and the broader community, while continuing to age with dignity and security. Federation will continue to collaborate with SBV on a number of activities and programs, including the popular monthly “Matinee at the J” and the Schmooze Room nutritional lunch program. SBV will continue to work from the Federation’s Bronfman Family JCC until their relocation to a permanent new home