Ruth Messinger

Content type
Women's Equality Day Composite Photo

Three Thought Leaders Reflect on Women’s Equality Day in 2017

Bella Book

This Women’s Equality Day, we asked three Jewish feminist thought leaders to reflect on this moment in history, to help us better understand where we are, where we need to go, and how we can pick up the mantle, again, from the suffragists and Bella Abzug, and keep marching.

Topics: Feminism
Ruth Messinger with her Young Children

Ruth Messinger: Inspiring Generations of Activism

Emily Cataneo

We at JWA are huge fans of Messinger, and at a time when we're mulling over what we can learn from Jewish women's activism to change the world, we found particular inspiration in a talk that Messinger, her daughter, and her granddaughter gave at a Human Rights Shabbat at Temple Hillel B’nai Torah in Boston, Mass. in the wake of the 2016 presidential election.

Death of Carolyn Goodman, not just a Jewish mother

August 17, 2007

“I'm not looking for revenge, but I am looking for justice." - Carolyn Goodman

Disaster Relief After Tornado in Moore, Oklahoma, May 23, 2013

The Passover Challenge: Discovering What We Take for Granted

Olivia Link

Even though the snow has persisted through and beyond the winter season, I am glad to acknowledge that spring is finally here! But before my junior year of high school comes to a close, I still have to cross some bridges before I can sail into summertime mode. Along with my upcoming AP exam, finals, and SAT test, I will shortly face the ultimate Jewish challenge: Passover.

For those who follow the Passover tradition where all grains are cut from the daily diet for eight days, then you certainly know that blissful feeling during break-fast when you take a big bite into that challah and think “wow, I will never take bread for granted again.”

Topics: Food, Passover

Ruth Messinger

The public often has different expectations of women than of men. They are not sure that women should be working, particularly in a business they think of as dirty.

"In the Land of Blood and Honey" Movie Poster, 2011

"In the Land of Blood and Honey" premieres at Holocaust Memorial Museum

Kate Bigam

Angelina Jolie (not a Jewess but a definite do-gooder) visited the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum last week to premiere In the Land of Blood and Honey, a film she wrote, directed, and co-produced.

Topics: Activism, Holocaust, Film

Unit 3, Lesson 5 - Civil Rights and Social Justice Today

Consider what contemporary civil rights and social justice issues matter to us today, and how Jews and African Americans determine their priorities and responsibilities to effect social change.

Philanthropy in the United States

In the United States, Jewish women’s philanthropy generally occurred through three main types of organizations: autonomous women’s organizations, women’s organizations that included some men, and women’s auxiliaries of male-dominated groups. In recent decades, changes in Jewish philanthropy and in gender roles have influenced contemporary styles of Jewish women’s philanthropy.

Ruth Messinger

Following successive careers as a New York City politician president and director of a major Jewish organization, Ruth Messinger has become nothing less than an icon of American Jewish progressive leadership. She became Manhattan borough president in 1990. After losing the 1997 mayor’s election to Rudolph Giuliani, she became the president and CEO of the American Jewish World Service, a position she held from 1998 to 2017.

Marjorie Wyler

Marjorie Wyler was a Jewish Theological Seminary professor for over half a century and was involved in numerous public service and Jewish organizations. Furthermore, her involvement in religious broadcasting, coupled with decades of public relations work, made her an advocate for the ethics of social justice inherent in Judaism.

Listen to Ruth Messinger!

Jordan Namerow

As our country's most politically charged month draws to a close, we're wrapping up November with a podcast of a (former) political leader who never ceases to inspire: the incomparable Ruth Messinger. A former New York City politician and now president of American Jewish World Service, Messinger, featured in JWA's online exhibit Jewish Women and the Feminist Revolution, has much to say about social justice and the challenges of being a woman in politics.

Topics: Feminism


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