A Message from the President and Executive Director of The Jewish Foundation of Cincinnati

On behalf of the Jewish Foundation of Cincinnati, its Trustees and professional staff, we are pleased to present this year’s Annual Report – a summation of our efforts in 2021 to invest in the Cincinnati Jewish Community.

We began the year hopeful that the unusual challenges presented in 2020 by a global pandemic, uncertain economy and social unrest would soon be in the rearview mirror. As we have seen, these forces have been more enduring as COVID has proven difficult to stamp out, the economic recovery has been uneven and the rifts in our society are still in need of healing. At the same time, however, while our Jewish Community has not been immune from these struggles, we have also seen an extraordinary resilience in the individuals as well as the institutions that make our community such a strong one. In the past year, we have come together to raise money for COVID relief, bolster our agencies and congregations, and persevere in our collective journey as a growing and evolving Jewish Community.

2021 also marked the 200th Anniversary of Jewish Life in Cincinnati, and our Jewish Federation designed an inspiring celebration of the Jewish Cincinnati Bicentennial. Kicking off with Jewish Cemeteries of Greater Cincinnati’s rededication of the historic Chestnut Street Cemetery during the ish Festival, the Bicentennial will feature a full year’s worth of programming to commemorate the history and contributions of Jews in Cincinnati – a much needed celebration, indeed.

In this year’s Annual Report, you will find information about the Foundation’s Grantmaking, including a full listing of the grants made in 2021. We also feature three particular examples that reflect our focus on strengthening our current investments, while simultaneously partnering with visionary, creative leaders to expand and adapt the menu of opportunities available for people seeking more Jewish connection. We present this material along with the list of Demonstrable Outcomes our Trustees aligned on, which serve as reference points for the ongoing measurement and evaluation of the impact of our community investments.

Finally, we take the opportunity in this Report to express our sincere appreciation and gratitude to three Trustees rotating off the Foundation Board after ten years, and to welcome aboard three new Trustees who will pick up the mantle and help lead the Foundation in the years ahead. The volunteers on the Foundation board work tirelessly to ensure that precious community dollars are being stewarded properly. The three retiring Trustees – Bob Brant, Beth Guttman and Leslie Newman – have exemplified that trust, and their service to the community is an inspiration for all of us. The three new Foundation Trustees – Rachel Faust, Ronna Schneider and Adam Symson – bring their own strengths, talents and leadership skills, and we look forward to the contributions they will make as we make progress towards Cincinnati 2030.

It is an honor to serve in our roles at the Foundation, and we close with best wishes for a year of health for our entire community, along with lots of shared success and fulfillment.


John Stein, President
Brian Jaffee photo

Brian Jaffee, Executive Director