Building a Jewish Presence Through Social Media
Quick and effective communication may run afoul of traditional Jewish culture for the “The People of the Book.” Consuming information in 140 characters requires true customization of message. Branding a nonprofit in a digital world is a highly effective endeavor, and a new feat for organizations nearly or exceeding a century in age! This panel’s discussion will focus on three key issues:( 1) Targeted Update Messages; (2) Bridging technological gaps between community leaders/communicators and social media experts; and (3) Community Engagement.
Bob Watts recently retired from a career with the U.S. Department of State as a Foreign Service Officer. He worked on economic, science, technology, IT and intellectual property issues in the U.S. and in Portugal, Brazil, Canada, Peru, and Central Asia. In his last assignment, he headed the Division responsible for visioning, building and maintaining State's internal social media platforms. He continues as a consultant in that office, developing new media training for diplomats. He is @eDipAtState on Twitter, with about 3800 followers.
Bob brought his State social media experience to advising several Jewish organizations on raising their understanding of how to better connect with their communities through new media. He is working with the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs at the international, regional and local level on building their social media presence and enhancing use of online training and rich media, and is on the board of the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia.
Bob holds a BA from New College of Florida, which he is helping to expand their international studies program. He also holds a Masters in Economics from Stanford University, and a Master of International Affairs degree from Columbia. He lives in the DC burbs and is a temporarily single dad to Sally, 16 and Zach, 13, while his wife Linda, still on active duty in the Foreign Service, is serving in Dushanbe, Tajikistan.
I work on public affairs, civic engagement and social media projects all day long and dream about them all night.
Jennifer-Joy Bronk is the executive director of The Hebrew Free Loan Association of Houston. Having working within non-profits for nearly a decade, Jennifer was selected to serve as HFLA Houston’s first executive director since its formation in 1932. Upon employment, Jennifer has diligently worked to increase the visibility and presence of HFLA Houston by collaborating with local business owners, entrepreneurs and community leaders to inspire Jewish Houstonians to reach out to HFLA when they have nowhere else to turn. She utilizes all forms of marketing, including traditional and social media, to reach out to both affiliated and non-affiliated Jews. She organizes monthly Jewish business networking breakfasts across the city and hosts annual seminars promoting HFLA loan programs.
Jennifer’s first formative legal employment was in Seoul, South Korea where she worked for a Korean law firm serving the country’s largest chebol clients. She was repeatedly requested to handle numerous government, military and corporate transactions across the globe. She then moved into a position with the Foreign Service Association where she served as Legal Advisor.
Since relocating to Houston in 2006, Jennifer has volunteered countless hours at Jewish Family Service as well as Hadassah, AIPAC, NCJW and her temple. As a volunteer attorney, Jennifer has donated over 4,000 hours for Jewish Family Service of Houston, handling business formation and development for the creation and operation of Celebration Company, an unincorporated company which employs developmentally disabled adults.
Jennifer graduated magna cum laude from high school at the age of 14 and earned her undergraduate degree on full scholarship in economics and political science with dual honors. She served as a foreign exchange student after the breakup of the Soviet Union in Russia and Ukraine as well as Capitol Hill’s youngest intern at the time. She then attended Syracuse University College of Law on scholarship and served as the president of the Jewish Law Student Association. Jennifer earned recognition for her research and studies in economics & law as well as aviation, including being awarded certification in both areas with her Juris Doctorate. She was an integral player in revitalizing the Syracuse airport by bringing in new airlines through promotion of the airport and its political representatives.
Jennifer is married with two beautiful daughters.
William Daroff was named by the Forward Newspaper as being among the fifty most influential Jews in America. As the Vice President for Public Policy and Director of the Washington Office of The Jewish Federations of North America, he is a leading advocate for the American Jewish community’s agenda in the nation’s capitol.
As the chief lobbyist and principle spokesperson on public policy and international affairs for the 157 Jewish federations and over 300 independent communities represented by JFNA, Daroff ensures that the voice of Jewish federations is a prominent force on Capitol Hill and in the Executive Branch.
Daroff guides the Jewish community’s advocacy efforts on the federation movement’s key domestic policy issues, principally on health and human services, such as Medicare and Medicaid, long-term care, and policies affecting older Americans, as well as homeland security programs and strengthening the capacity of the not-for-profit sector.
In addition to his focus on domestic policy, Daroff is a key player in foreign policy circles – advising policy-makers and elected officials on Jewish communal concerns, principally those related to the US-Israel relationship, the Middle East conflict, vulnerable Jewish communities across the world, and the fight to combat states that promote terror. He is also a leader in the worldwide fight to combat the assault on Israel’s legitimacy, acting as a key steward of the Federation Movement’s $6 million “Israel Action Network” initiative, and serving on both the steering committee of the Prime Minister of Israel’s global task force and the Conference of Presidents of Major American Organization’s working group.
Daroff is also a social networking pioneer and evangelist. Daroff has twice been named by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency - JTA - as being among the top five most influential Jewish Twitterers in the world. Follow him at @Daroff
Daroff received his Bachelor Degree (summa cum laude) in Political Science & History, Masters Degree in Political Science, and Juris Doctorate from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland. He currently lives in suburban Washington, DC, with his wife, Heidi Krizer Daroff, and their two children. The couple met in Krakow, Poland, while studying at Jagiellonian University, from which they both received certificates in the history of Eastern European Jewry and the Holocaust.