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SHI-NA Named One of North America’s Most Innovative Jewish Nonprofits

Seventh annual “Slingshot” guidebook names 50 most innovative Jewish nonprofits in America

Shalom Hartman Institute of North America has been named one of the nation’s 50 most innovative Jewish nonprofits in Slingshot ’11-‘12, a resource guide for Jewish innovation.
Shalom Hartman Institute of North America (SHI-NA) was selected for its unique approach to research and educational program development. Hartman scholars wrestle with central issues in Jewish life, and then, in an approach that distinguishes Hartman from its think-tank peers, SHI faculty take the fruit of these discussions and ensure that its key concepts are delivered into the hands of the North American Jewish community members who assist the Institute in convening relevant conversations – rabbis, educators, professionals, and lay leaders.

Click on the image above to read the complete assessment of the Hartman program.
Slingshot is used by philanthropists, volunteers, not-for-profit executives, and program participants to identify path-finding and trailblazing organizations grappling with concerns in Jewish life such as identity, community, and tradition. Shalom Hartman Institute of North America was chosen for the first time by a panel of 36 foundation professionals from across North America.


In order to be listed in Slingshot, organizations are selected from among hundreds of nominees. Finalists are chosen based on their strength in four areas: innovation, impact, leadership, and organizational efficiency.

The Shalom Hartman Institute is a center of transformative thinking and teaching that addresses the major challenges facing the Jewish people, in the goal of elevating the quality of Jewish life in Israel and around the world. The Shalom Hartman Institute of North America sustains and strengthens the vision, commitment, and knowledge of leaders who shape the future of Jewish life in North America.
"We are honored to be chosen by Slingshot as one of North America’s most innovative Jewish nonprofits," said Yehuda Kurtzer, President of Shalom Hartman Institute of North America. "Shalom Hartman Institute of North America (SHI-NA) blends characteristics of a start-up with those of a long-standing organization. While we stand on the shoulders of the profoundly significant work of the Shalom Hartman Institute, SHI-NA is a young venture that partners with change agents to promote transformation and address the evolving needs of the American Jewish community–a mission which we believe Slingshot pioneered and for which it advocates. While the Hartman Institute has been a creative force in Jewish life for some time, our activities in North America represent a significant shift. We look to the Slingshot vehicle, widely known for its ability to spotlight innovative and significant projects in the North American Jewish community, to make the new SHI-NA venture better known to partner agencies and philanthropists."
According to Will Schneider, Executive Director of Slingshot, “Slingshot celebrates the relative peace and prosperity that Jews enjoy in the United States and Canada while highlighting those organizations that work to ensure that Jewish life isn’t left behind as the world moves forward. Slingshot ’11-’12 is an inspirational look at a Jewish community that is adapting to changing needs in Jewish life. We had more applications than ever this year, with a wider variety of missions. In order to be selected by our evaluators, innovations and their impact had to resonate more than ever.”
Five years ago, a group of next-generation philanthropists launched the Slingshot Fund, a collective giving mechanism to support innovative Jewish life. In just five cycles, 55 members of the Slingshot Fund have contributed more than $1.8 million to innovative Jewish not-for-profits.
Jonathan Raiffe, chairman of Slingshot, said, “The Slingshot guide makes a statement to the Jewish community and beyond that next gen funders embrace change, innovation, and evaluation when meeting the needs of our community. Slingshot promotes organizations that hold themselves accountable to all their stakeholders and up to the same scrutiny as for-profit organizations, while pushing the boundaries of how to solve the most pressing issues. Slingshot is about making a statement as to what we believe are the greatest needs and what organizations are doing the best job to fulfill those needs. Organizations that receive grants from Slingshot clearly identify an unmet need and offer proven models and solutions that can have a far-reaching impact.”

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