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Canon and Icons: In Search of a Jewish Communal Service Profession

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Publication Date: January 2005

Publisher(s): Jewish Communal Service Association of North America

Author(s): Gerald Bubis

Series: Journal of Jewish Communal Service, 81:1-2

Special Collection: Berman Jewish Policy Archive

Topic: Culture and religion (Religion and religious groups)
Social conditions (History)

Keywords: Leadership; Jewish Organizations; Institutional Memory

Type: Report


The field of Jewish communal service suffers amnesia on a large scale. We have almost no icons who are appreciated, looked up to, and/or remembered from decade to decade. No comprehensive history of the field even exists. Few classes in Jewish communal service history are even taught. It would be hard to think of another field of service that has done so little to honor its own past and those who helped shape the services and institutions of today, which we take for granted.