Senior Director of Synagogue Leadership

Mission Critical

This position is the Senior Director of the Department of Synagogue Leadership, supervising staff who provide programmatic and consultancy services to USCJ member congregations throughout North America. The senior director will also lead a process for USCJ to determine how to structure our services to support our member synagogues.

Position Purpose

Helping synagogues thrive is the core of USCJ’s work. Our synagogues need to evaluate and strengthen every aspect of their work, becoming relational centers for prayer, education, caring, and community action. The Senior Director for the Department of Synagogue Leadership is:

● A leader on the current landscape and future direction of synagogues.

● The lead professional responsible for ensuring that our 560 member synagogues have awareness of and access to key USCJ programs and services

● Primary consultant and resource for congregational strategic planning

● Manager, trainer, and curriculum developer for Sulam leadership programs

● The team leader supervising six synagogue consultants as well as specialists, strategic planning consultants, and leadership training experts

● Department representative to the senior staff and USCJ Board;Liaison to the District Leadership Committee (DLC) and the Synagogue Leadership committee (SLC)

Duties and Responsibilities

A. Thought Leadership and Lead Professional

a. Envision the future of synagogues, understand the leadership and managerial needs of congregations and establish a department structure to support this vision

b. Create conversations around the future of synagogue life and leadership through presentations, articles, blogs, etc.

c. Support synagogue transformation, innovation, and needed leadership training by creating and curating resources in partnership with other department staff

d. Effectively engage our congregations by developing and implementing strategic solutions

e. Represent and serve as primary partner with key strategic partners (e.g. Joint Placement Commission, Rabbinical Assembly, JEA, Institute for Southern Jewish Life, etc.)

f. Work with USCJ Board and lay leaders. Oversee the DLC and DSL committees.

B. Department Team Leader

a. Supervise 6 Synagogue Consultants and other department specialists

b. Establish departmental goals and key performance indicators for both synagogue consultants and the leadership development team

c. Develop trainings for department staff and others in the organization to further their knowledge of synagogues and other relevant skills

d. Work closely with other Senior Staff, in the organization , especially the Sr. Director of Engagement Initiatives, Sr. Director of Teen Engagement and Sr. Director of Affiliations and Operations.

e. Prepare reports as needed for senior professional leadership, the Board and lay leadership

f. Run regular Synagogue Consultant and departmental meetings

g. Work with Development department to help secure funding for departmental programming and initiatives

C. Strategic Planning for Congregations

a. Serve as strategic planning consultant with 1-2 congregations per year in a full planning process

b. Engage with additional congregations in more limited planning

D. Leadership Programs

a. Direct leadership training seminars for presidents, officers, etc.

b. Create and update curricular materials and coach synagogue consultants to facilitate workshops

c. Create, update and refine congregational assessment tools

d. Serve as liaison to training partners (e.g. Keshet and Sacred Spaces) for cohort programs

Supervisory Responsibility: Supervises the 6 FT Synagogue Consultants, 2 Specialists, Leadership and Planning consultants, and PT Department Administrator.

Salary and Benefits: $140,000 plus benefits

Work Environment: New York office space available, can be a fully remote position

Physical Demands: NA

Position Type/Expected Hours of Work

● Full-time position

● Majority of working hours must overlap with Eastern Time Zone


● Travel required; including day visits to congregations and potential multiple-stop overnight trips, in addition to occasional conferences

Preferred Education and Experience

● Advanced degree in education, Jewish studies, social work, organizational development, Jewish communal service, and/or rabbinic ordination

● Extensive knowledge of synagogue leadership, management, governance and programming, as well as specific knowledge of the trends unique to Conservative- Masorti synagogues

● Experience facilitating strategic planning processes and leadership training programs

● Demonstrated experience in supervising multiple projects simultaneously, both as a lead consultant and supervisor of other consultants

● 10 years or more of increasing responsibility in management roles

● Proven ability to develop and support high-performing teams

● Experience managing and supporting organizational change

Additional Eligibility Qualifications

● Expertise in building and maintaining stakeholder relationships

● Knowledge of and sensitivity to the tenets of Conservative Judaism

● Commitment to excellent customer service

● Excellent written, presentation, facilitation and communication skills

● Excellent active listening skills

● Excellent organizational, project management and technological skills

● High emotional intelligence

● Capacity to analyze and connect needs with resources

● Ability to work independently and manage multiple deadlines

● Team player

● Problem solver

● Commitment to personal growth and ongoing training

● Competence in Microsoft word, Excel and Powerpoint

● Willing to learn client management database (CiviCRM) and other systems as required

How to Apply

Please access the Talent Profile to apply for this role (here). If leaders are interested in the role or have suggestions, they can contact our team directly at [email protected].