Gain insights and inspiration from a diplomatic “insider” at UJFT’s Annual campaign kickoff celebration

by | Sep 4, 2016 | What’s Happening

Dennis Ross
Tuesday, September 20, 5:45-6:45 pm
Sandler Center for the Performing Arts
Free and open to all members of the Jewish community, RSVP information below

The opportunity to hear firsthand what the result of the presidential election may mean for Jews in Tidewater, in Israel, and in communities around the world presents itself—for free, from an internationally renowned, bi-partisan veteran diplomat at the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater’s Annual Campaign Kickoff. Among other highlights, the event features a special briefing with Ambassador Dennis Ross who has been a confidant and advisor to five U.S. presidents, a prize-winning author, and a “peace process junkie” who spent the past 30 years trying to resolve the Israeli Palestinian issue.

Ross’ analysis and insights at Campaign Kickoff will be tailored specifically for the Jewish community during a catered cocktail and hors d’oeuvres reception held on stage at the Sandler Center for Performing Arts, prior to his appearance there before a general audience at the Israel Today/ Virginia Beach Forum.

“Ambassador Ross has spent much of his career working with both Republican and Democratic administrations on matters affecting Israel and the Middle East peace process,” says Laura Geringer Gross, chair of this year’s Annual Federation Campaign. “I look forward to hearing [him] discuss his long time service in the field, and with the peace process.”

In addition to Ross’ conversation, Campaign leaders including Gross will speak briefly. They’ll share details of some of the most pressing challenges facing Jews today, and outline the Federation’s plans to address those issues through support for the Annual Campaign.

“Campaign Kickoff is held during or near the beginning of the Jewish New Year, a period of true introspection, commitment to cause, and positive growth,” says UJFT president Jay Klebanoff.

This year, event organizers changed the presenter, the format, and the venue— from the stage at Reba and Sam Sandler Family Campus to the stage at Virginia Beach’s Sandler Center for Performing Arts, 201 Market St.

“No matter where it’s held, or who the featured guest may be,” community leader Karen Jaffe says, “showing up to this event and others is important. Attendance and participation are key ingredients in ensuring challenges are met, and fellow Jews are not forgotten—because the problems never go away.”

“Coming to the Kickoff is one of the best ways to learn about the impact you make when you give to the Federation,” Jaffe says, “and you can get involved right away. Come to Kickoff for a fresh start to our Jewish New Year.”

RSVP for the Annual Campaign Kickoff by Sept. 15—the first 100 people to RSVP will receive complimentary tickets to hear Ambassador Ross’ Forum presentation. (Regularly $40)

For more information, visit; to RSVP, email or call 757-965-6115.

Laine M. Rutherford