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March 01, 2012 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2012-03-01

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

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messaging that successfully
reached their parents. Federations
across the county are facing the
same challenges. What's so exciting
about Detroit is that we're innovat-
ing a way to solve them."
Rosenzweig and other NEXTGen
leaders have made it clear the new
division is not simply rebranding
the old message. Rather, they're
fundamentally changing the way
they do business. Instead of being
largely focused on raising dollars,
they are now equally focused on
the task of building a relevant com-
munity.
To achieve this, NEXTGen Detroit
will leverage a combination of out-
reach efforts, events and messaging
that help redefine the mission of
Federation in terms that resonate
with this new audience. Social
media and other Web-based tech-
nologies will play a key role in keep-
ing the group connected but so, too,
will face-to-face interaction.
"This group is highly engaged,
whether it be to help our local com-
munity, support the revitalization of
Detroit or just celebrate and social-
ize with peers:' says Marty Maddin,
current YAD President-elect who
will become the first president of
NEXTGen Detroit in June.
"The main thing is this group
wants to see the result of their
efforts. They care deeply about a
number of issues in the community,
and they are willing to work hard for
change. Our job is to provide a con-
duit to the needs, and to make sure
the efforts remain focused. And to
make sure we have some fun, too:"

Building On Successes
The initiative already has had
numerous successes in earlier
incarnations. CommunityNEXT, for
example, has drawn national atten-
tion for the remarkable growth in its
audience and attendance at numer-
ous events. Lathe Vodka, a joint
CommunityNEXT/YAD event last
November, drew close to 800 young
Jews, many new to Federation.
"This is a critical time for us,"
Kaufman says. "If we don't attract
and engage successfully, there won't
be anyone here to care for the needs
of the community in the future. But
through the remarkable work of our
young leaders, we're now headed
in the opposite direction, toward
growth, renewal and a future where
every young Jewish person here has
a meaningful place to call home:'



Ted Cohen, Federation's senior

director of marketing, contributed

to this report.

Akiva Spotlight

Israel advocate and
successful alumnus
to befeted at dinner.

A

kiva Hebrew Day School
will present its annual Keter
Shem Toy Award to Detroit
News Editorial Page Editor Nolan
Finley for being an avid supporter
of Israel and the rights of the Jewish
people. Adam Gardin, who heads a res-
idential home renovation and building
company, will be honored as Alumnus
of the Year.
The Southfield-
based school will
host its 48th anni-
versary banquet on
Sunday, March 18, at
the Hyatt Regency,
600 Town Center
Drive, Dearborn.
"Nolan Finley has
Nolan Finley
been a consistent
advocate for the
State of Israel, and
Akiva wanted to
recognize his efforts
and commitment
to a cause that we
as a school and a
community hold
so important:' said
Sidney Katz, Akiva executive director.
Finley directs the expression of
the Detroit News editorial position
on national and local issues. He also
writes a Sunday column. Previously,
Finley was the newspaper's deputy
managing editor, directing the news-
room. He joined the newspaper in
1976 while a student at Wayne State
University.
Gardin, a 1999 Akiva gradu-
ate, is founder of GarCon Building
Group, based in Toronto. Homestars.
com recently named the Oak Park
native "Best General Contractor" in
Toronto. He serves on the board of his
synagogue, Shomrai Shabbos Chevra
Mishnayos, as well as of Netivot
Hatorah, the day school attended by
his three sons. He and his wife, Naomi,
live in Toronto.
"I had great memories of my time at
the school:' Gardin said. "Many of my
teachers instilled a love of Torah, Israel
and a sense of communal responsibil-
ity and values in me, which guide me
today."
The banquet begins at 5 p.m. with
hors d'oeuvres/dinner. The program
starts at 6 p.m. A patron afterglow is
at 7:30 p.m. The banquet cost is $180
per person. Patron packages are avail-
able. Purchase tickets until March 9
by calling the Akiva office: (248) 386-
1625. 0

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