The Harry Kay Leadership Institute is back for its tenth cohort; cohort nine reflects

The Minneapolis Jewish Federation and the St. Paul Jewish Federation, in partnership with the Harry Kay Foundation, are pleased to announce that the Harry Kay Leadership Institute (HKLI) will return this fall, training its tenth cohort of leaders. 

Last November 40 young leaders completed the two-year program, becoming the latest in a network of nearly 300 alumni. HKLI, a thirty-year institution in the Twin Cities, trains leaders to navigate the challenges and opportunities affecting the Minneapolis and St. Paul Jewish people and organizations—thought each cohort learns that the program goes beyond leadership training.

“HKLI changed the way I see our Jewish community,” said Cohort 9 alumni Joel Paper. “My experience was incredible.”

The nomination process for Cohort 10 of HKLI is currently underway. Rabbis, Jewish communal leaders, and alumni have been contacted to tap nominees, who will receive their application in March. 

As Cohort 9 reflected on their experience, we asked them to share the most important things they learned on their leadership journey:

HKLI helped me recognize that I am a leader within our Jewish community, and the time to step up is now. Thinking of new ways to reach individuals who are less assimilated than we are is going to be our generation’s greatest challenge.
— Arielle Kaufmann
[HKLI taught me] The importance of doing and speaking up for what you believe is right, no matter the adversity or unpopularity.
— David Krco
I learned about taking chances—and being willing to fail.
— Joel Paper
I had never thought about how different the experience of a Hungarian Jew was after the Holocaust from that of an American Jew after the Holocaust. This was not something I learned about in Sunday school.
— Nicki Murphy
I didn’t realize there were so many different challenges that need energy, attention, and resources.
— Adam Fink
Participating in the Harry Kay Cohort reminded me the importance of expanding my network. Growing up in the Twin Cities it is easy to feel like you know everyone, and you know all the organizations in town. I am so grateful for the new people I met, the deeper relationships I established with old friends, and the introduction to so many agencies.
— Robyn Schein
There’s a bigger community out there than I realized. I of course knew the Jewish community extends beyond just the organizations that I am involved with, but it was eye-opening to see just how much else is out there.
— Joel Ribnick
Leadership is all about taking action and being a part of the solution with the issues and organizations in our community.
— Leo Zabezhinsky
I have a greater confidence to walk into a leadership role, knowing who I am and what I can contribute.
— Aaron Gelperin
Leadership comes in all shapes and sizes. There is a ton of opportunity to have an impact in our community today and that impact can have global reach
— Lindsay Kalin