October 31, 2022
Dear Pardes Community Members and Friends,
Rabbi Mike Uram, who has led Pardes North America for nearly two years, is leaving Pardes to take a new job as the Chief Jewish Education Officers of Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) where he will serve as rabbi and educator-in-residence, increasing Jewish content in all the various areas of JFNA’s work. Part of what made this job so attractive to Mike is that it will allow him to teach groups of people in ongoing ways, serving as the rabbi to a number of different JFNA constituent groups. This kind of rabbinical work that is embedded in communities is something Mike missed after leaving Penn Hillel.
The building of Pardes North America really began with a vision developed by many of us on the Pardes team, with the initial seed gift from the AVI CHAI Foundation. Not only was money raised, but Pardes North America hired new staff, expanded its programming and engaged alumni and stakeholders to build new momentum. Rabbi Mike Uram joined the team in January of 2021 and really helped take PNA into its next phase: building powerful partnerships, expanding the staff and faculty, and leveraging the power of Mahloket Matters to communities throughout America. Mike also developed the mission and theory of change that now inform the work of PNA and positions Pardes for building the next phase of its work in North America, as detailed in our new Strategic Plan.
Mike will stay on with Pardes until the end of November to oversee a smooth transition of all of his current job responsibilities and will continue to be a friend and supporter of Pardes from his new position at JFNA. Meanwhile, we will be ensuring the continuity of our work in North America during this interim period, and will be engaged in a search for new professional leadership.
I am so grateful to Mike for his generative leadership and for taking our work in North America to a new level. We wish Mike continued hatzlachah and many brachot in his new role.
Rabbi Leon Morris
President of Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies