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A message to our readers
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A message to our readers

Annual messages often begin with the observation that it is hard to believe another year has already come and gone. This year, though, it is surely not the case: It’s been a long, complicated, conflicted year with continued partisan rancor and fundamental disagreements about local, national, and international issues — as well as about the media and even about the definition of facts.

As a result, we welcome the end of this year and look ahead to 5778 with hope that it will bring our community and our country peace, progress, and prosperity — and constructive communications. We redouble our commitment at NJJN to help that happen.

NJJN remains keenly aware of our mandate to present the issues, and a range of ideas and opinions, as fairly as possible amidst a toxic environment of political and ideological rancor. Our goal remains to present different voices and to stimulate (and, sometimes, host) constructive discussion with respect for others’ opinions, even in the face of deep disagreement. We hope our efforts to inform and to challenge, and, perhaps, inspire our readers to reflect and act on today’s pressing issues have had some success.

We also look back with gratitude for our relationships with you, our readers, and our communal partners, business partners, and the team that makes up our board and staff. 

A number of projects of The Jewish Week Media Group, our publisher, help further our mission of community-building and we deeply appreciate the support many of you have shown — by your attendance and your generosity — for these efforts, which include:

The Conversation, an open, off-the-record retreat for opinion leaders, volunteers, professionals, and others involved in Jewish life, just completed its 14th annual retreat. More than 700 people have participated in the program, which seeks to connect creative Jews from around the country and encourage them to engage in dialogue and to network together. 

Write On For Israel will soon begin educating its 16th cohort of high school juniors embarking on an intensive two-year program of classes, discussions, and travel to Israel to learn about utilizing journalism and other communications to build stronger support for and understanding of Israel before they get to campus.

Fresh Ink for Teens continues to serve as a vibrant online magazine written by and for teens, helping to train and encourage emerging young Jewish writers.

The Jewish Week Investigative Journalism Fund provides in-depth reporting on key issues in Jewish and world affairs —  the kind of enterprise journalism that goes well beyond the time and resources usually available to a local news organization.

Finally, our Jewish Week Community Forums bring together newsmakers and opinion leaders in timely and open conversation with the community. We’re proud to have hosted author Yossi Klein Halevi and columnist Bret Stephens, and we are planning additional forums for Greater MetroWest in the coming year.

Many of these programs would not happen without your support (provided to NJJN and The Jewish Week through our charitable fund at FJC.org). We hope you’ll continue to contribute as we seek to sustain and strengthen these programs.

Another way to support NJJN is through the upcoming Jewish Week gala on Nov. 28 (at the Pierre Hotel; details on our website). Every two years we gather to thank our readers, supporters, partners, and friends, and to honor those who have made a special contribution to our community and to journalism. This year we have three prominent honorees — Peter Wang, our board chair and immediate past president will receive The Jewish Week Leadership Award; Jeffrey Goldberg, editor-in-chief of The Atlantic, will receive our Excellence in Journalism award; and Abigail Pogrebin, author and community leader, will receive our Community Leader Award.

May the coming year bring us ever closer to our goal of informing and strengthening our community while providing a platform where we can talk, learn, share, and respectfully disagree. 

We wish you and your families a year of good health, happiness, and peace. Thanks to each of you for your interest and commitment. 

Shanah Tovah,

Stuart Himmelfarb
President, Board of Directors

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