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Apply to Take Your Leadership to the NEXUS Level

January 21, 2022

NEXUS 2022 is an eight-session program designed to develop rising Jewish leaders in their 20s and 30s who seek to build community, explore their Jewish values and philanthropy, and gain exclusive access to Federation’s network of established community builders and resources. NEXUS participants are empowered in their efforts to better engage the Jewish community in Greater Washington.

We are seeking young, aspiring Jewish leaders who express philanthropic passion, unbridled curiosity, and dedication to developing leadership skills and deepening their involvement in the Jewish community. Whether you are looking to break into Jewish communal leadership or want to elevate your leadership experience to the next level, this program is for you.

Program Cost

$90 ($18 contributes to the Giving Circle.
See session #7 for more details.)

Application Deadline

Friday, January 21, 2022

Session Dates and Descriptions

Program are on Tuesdays from 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM unless otherwise noted.

Pre-Session | Thursday, February 24 | 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Meet & Greet Happy Hour
Welcome to the NEXUS Class of 2022!  We will mingle and get to know one another before taking the bold step to becoming empowered leaders and deepening your involvement in the Jewish community.

Session 1 | March 1
This Is NEXUS 2022
This session will be divided into two parts. First, we will review the curriculum, e-binder, and general housekeeping. Discussion prompts will explore the big questions: What is a leader? What is philanthropy? And beyond. We will break into discussion groups and reconvene for a final recap and discussion.

Session 2 | March 15
A Federation Deep Dive  
Federation’s mission is to inspire, build, and sustain vibrant Jewish life in a changing world by mobilizing our community in common purpose, intentional innovation, and effective action. This work is impossible without our lay leaders, partner organizations, and ever-growing Next Gen community. Together we will deep dive into Federation’s work and all the partner organizations that we support, plus the inspiring world of Federation lay leadership. We will hear from key active members from Federation’s leadership community who will inspire NEXUS participants with stories of their Federation journey.

Session 3 | Sunday, April 3 | 12:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Sara & Samuel J. Lessans Good Deeds Day
Building on the previous week’s introduction to all the inspiring work we do with our partner organizations, we will put this into action by coming together for a day of service supporting our community as a NEXUS cohort.

Session 4 | April 12
Relationship Building 101
During this session, we will be joined by GatherDC to dive into the importance of relationship-based engagement and the practice of “meeting people where they are.” In this session, we will explore the power of centering our work and leadership around people and community building first. We will also discuss the importance of making space for exploratory conversations to deepen relational trust, and to better understand the individuals within and outside the Jewish community.

Session 5 | April 26
Inclusivity & Diversity: Be the Voice, Empower the Voice
Grounded in the Jewish value that all human beings are created “b’tzelem elohim” (in God’s image), Federation is using our resources, platform, and influence to build a culture of inclusion and equity in Greater Washington. Building on our guiding principle of belonging, we will have an expert-led discussion on diversity, stereotypes, and inclusion in the workplace and beyond. We will recognize the role we have as leaders to strengthen and empower our diverse, beautiful, and vibrant community. We will address the current hurdles in today’s environment and work together to address how to be inclusive leaders. We will work as individuals and as a cohort to embrace authenticity, encourage diverse voices, create a sense of belonging, and empower ourselves and others as advocates and allies to those around us.

Session 6 | May 10
Tzedakah and Your Philanthropic Duty
Community service and philanthropy are the cornerstone of what it means to be a leader within the Jewish community. Guided by Federation’s mission, we will explore our philanthropic duty and values as leaders. We will break into groups and play a game of “Allocations,” in which each team will be given the challenging responsibility of appropriately allocating funds to programs and communities in need. This session will open the door to emerging leaders; empowering them to take that first step with the knowledge that they can be philanthropic leaders in their communities no matter the stage of their personal or professional lives.

Session 7 | May 24
NEXUS Giving Circle
We will be putting everything we learned in the Allocations Game into practice. We will be working with JFNA’s Amplifier to come together and participate in a NEXUS Giving Circle where we will pool our charitable contributions and go through an intentional process inspired by Jewish values to decide how to allocate our funds. Through discussions and small breakouts, we will come to a unanimous decision and give a collective donation on behalf of the NEXUS cohort to one of Federation’s partner organizations.

Session 8 | Friday, June 10
Shabbat Potluck Graduation
Congratulations to the NEXUS Class of 2022 who are now educated and empowered leaders, armed with the tools needed to have a voice and make change in their own lives and the Jewish community at large. Together we will break bread, celebrate our successes, and set intentions for the year ahead!

For more information, please contact Erika Kauder at [email protected].


January 21, 2022

To view all community events, visit