Six years ago, when I first began my professional journey at the JCC, Felicia Gordon was the very first person to greet me. The day after Labor Day, when our teachers return after each summer, I approached the JCC intimidated and overwhelmed with the many feelings associated with beginning a new job. I did not know anyone here. In many ways, I did not yet know what the JCC was. Before I even made it into the building, Felicia was there waiting to say hi. She welcomed me on the sidewalk with a big hug and said, “Welcome. We’re so glad to have you here.” It meant the world to me. Her smile and hug calmed my nerves. In this and so many other ways, Felicia represents the best of what the JCC and our school stands for.
Felicia has always cared for and supported my professional growth, and this year I have been happy to be able to return the favor and partner with her in a new way. And so it is with a happy heart that I share exciting news.
Felicia will be moving on to a new professional opportunity this July. After spending eight successful years in her role as Associate Director, she will be moving into an admissions role at an ongoing NYC private school. I am thrilled for the professional opportunity and personal growth that this move will bring for Felicia. I know she will thrive and flourish in her new role, just as she has for the past eight years here. Felicia will continue to work in her full capacity through the middle of the summer.
Our search for an Associate Director began this morning and will be an exhaustive search. We are looking for an educator who displays a belief in the power of community, a passion for progressive education, and a commitment to living and learning Jewish values. I truly believe that this can be a moment of positive growth and change for our school.
A school is a social institution, built on the relationships among its many members. Felicia has welcomed many of you into our community just as she did for me. Greeting our families with her each morning and afternoon this year has been an absolute privilege of mine. I could not have asked for nor imagined a better partner this year. Two unmistakable qualities that Felicia has brought to our school are her warmth and her productivity. Her remarkable ability to balance both has helped us grow into the excellent school that we are today.
I know that one day this summer Felicia will approach her new school and there will be someone there waiting for her with a smile and a hug, welcoming her and calming any new-job anxiety. While I cannot of course physically be that person, I will be mentally embracing her and wishing her the best of luck. Felicia has meant so much to me personally and to our school as a whole during her eight years here; I cannot wait to see the positive impact she will have on her new school.