Judy AI am often asked about my role as Temple president - why I volunteered, what has my experience been like, etc. What I always come back to when thinking about these questions is that this has truly been the privilege of a lifetime. To know that you, our congregants, have trusted me - a Des Moines transplant - with the responsibility of a congregation that is over a century old, a building that is almost 90 years old and traditions that date back to the beginning of time, has been awesome. I sincerely mean that!

I hope that your trust in me has given you a feeling of security. Decisions made throughout my tenure have always been with the very best of intentions, Our finances are stable, Our renovation is complete. Our rabbi has a contract. Our staff can successfully run this institution with very direction. Our communications have been rebranded. Our relationship with organizations that lease space are solid.

There is work left undone. Our new chapel is not yet finished, but the design is complete. Our bathrooms and hallway upstairs have not been touched. It is my hope that we find the funds to finish them in the near future. This progress reminds me of the teachings of Pirke Avot - "It is not your responsibility to finish the work of perfecting the world, but you are not free to desist from it either." We are all responsible for continuing the work to secure the future of our beloved Temple. Every bit helps!

I would be remiss not to thank my Board of Trustees. These volunteers are the heart and soul of this sacred community. I tear up at every worship service when I hear the music of our very talented musicians. I get goose bumps when I join in worship in our beautiful sanctuary with folks I have known for more than 20 years. I will miss my coffee meetings with the Rabbi and thank him for agreeing to make changes that are not always easy.

Thank you for trusting in me to make the best decision on behalf of Temple B’nai Jeshurun these past two years. I assure you I am leaving you in the more than capable hands of Alan Adato. I hope you will be as gracious to him as you have been to me these past two years.

Judy Shkolnick