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Ted Farber and Federation
My Point of View--Jan 06, 2001
© Rabbi Jack Moline

Each year, I write at least one column encouraging you to contribute to the Jewish Federation and to offer your time on Super Sunday or other days to be a gabbai tzedakah, facilitator of giving. There is always good reason to do so – more so this year as a show of solidarity with the State of Israel – but I ask you to respond as a personal tribute to Ted Farber as well.

Ted has been the Executive Vice-President of our Federation for seventeen years, and just announced that he has decided to pursue other challenges. He is at the top of his game, as evidenced by the organization he has cultivated in our community, and he deserves every tantalizing opportunity which may have come his way.

Consider just a few of the attributes of our Federation which rest with Ted’s leadership: – A serious examination of funding priorities has taken place on a continual basis. As needs have shifted, so have allocations. – The partnership between synagogues and Federation has been recognized and nurtured. – A staff is in place which reflects a remarkable breadth and depth of Jewish values and philanthropic acumen. – The lay leadership that has been cultivated universally lifts the quality of a person’s commitment over the quantity of a person’s contributions. – Ted answers his own telephone – a statement of unparalleled accessibility.

And there is the additional benefit that he is a heck of a nice guy.

No measure of appreciation would mean more to him than to affirm the goals of seventeen years of service. Make a generous pledge to the annual campaign of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, and then add to it in honor of Ted Farber’s years of dedication. Invest a few hours of time in the work of Federation, and then add an hour or two more in honor of Ted Farber’s accomplishments. (Super Sunday is February 4.)

One more aspect of support is worth mentioning. Ted never complained about the terms of his employment. However, he did advocate strenuously for more appropriate compensation and benefits for his staff. Any non-profit is understandably skittish about the amount of labor and administrative costs, and all the more so when the organization is charged with the collection and distribution of tzedakah. The best and the brightest of Federation workers are prey for other non-profits, which can offer them meaningful work at more favorable compensation. Support our community in supporting our communal workers.

We are the better for Ted Farber’s leadership. And even though he will remain in Washington, he will be missed in that leadership role.

ds of their people. It is a pretty fair bet that few, if any, of them have the ear of the management of SCI.

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