Building Relationships

A key role JCRC plays is building relationships with other ethnic, religious, and racial communities. It is through important connections, that we partner on programs to encourage, advocate and mobilize. We also reach out and interact with legislators at all levels of government.

Intergroup relationships

The Multicultural Women’s Group

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Multicultural Women’s Group during Summer 2021 at a backyard gathering

The Multicultural Women’s Group meets several times a year. It is a safe space for people to learn about each other’s backgrounds and lives. There are always smiles and lots of food.

“Several organizations are proud to work with the Jewish community but it is imperative to keep in mind that relationship building is a never-ending process. These relationships are avenues for members of different communities to connect and truly learn about each other, which overrides and undercuts any and all prejudices.”

“The Multicultural Women’s Group is a best practice model where people from other backgrounds make friends and show respect to each other.”

-Yan Liu, Founder of Bridges from Borders.

(see Engage in Racial Justice button above)

Racial Justice Sub-Committee:

The Racial Justice Sub-Committee chaired by Corey Auerbach and staffed by Rachel Beerman grew out of the recommendations from Racial Justice Working Group (February 2021).

Another recommendation was engaging in Jewish Federation of North America’s Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion program. Jewish Buffalo is one of the inaugural cohorts in the JEDI program which began in May 2021. This year- long intensive program focuses on education as a means to engage and ultimately empower the Jewish community on racial equity in our Jewish and larger community. JEDI will be rolling out a curriculum for cohort communities to use. For more information, click here.

Members: Corey Auerbach, Chair; Deborah Goldman, JCRC Chair; Rabbi Ori Bergman, Marc Brown, Adam Fogel, Brenda Freedman, Hannah Gabelnick, Amy Heumann, Risé Kulick, Rene Petties Jones, Harvey Sanders, Samantha White, Shelly Yellen, BJF President and ex-officio.

Mara Koven-Gelman, Executive Director, Rachel Beerman, Racial Justice Coordinator, Rabbi Alex Lazarus-Klein, Rabbinic Consultant, Rob Goldberg, CEO Buffalo Jewish Federation

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Members of the Racial Justice Sub-Committee visit Buffalo’s Black Achievers Museum

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JCRC is committed to the Jewish value of “B’Tselem Elokim” – all people are created in G-d’s image. We ensure respect for all individuals. We lovingly interact with people of other faiths in Greater Buffalo. We do this by: visiting other houses of worship, partnership with Network of Religious Communities, interfaith trips to Israel and annual Interfaith Passover Seders.

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2021 Interfaith Seder – notice the then Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul is on the bottom row, one in from the right

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2017 Interfaith Clergy Trip to Israel


JCRC is dedicated to building relationships with legislators as we advocate for a just, civil, and caring society. Our work with legislators takes several forms:

  • 2021 Mayoral and Erie County Sheriff Candidates Forum
  • Face to face meetings with NYS Assembly members Jon Rivera (D-149, Buffalo, Hamburg and Lackawanna), NYS Assembly Member Karen McMahon (D-146, Amherst, Pendleton, and City of Buffalo South District Council Member Christopher Scanlon.
  • Virtual Events: “Understanding 2022 NYS Social Justice Bills” webinar
  • Scheduled first-ever Legislative Breakfast February 2022. The goal of the breakfast is to deeper relationships with our legislators and sharing our Buffalo Jewish community priorities. Members of the JCRC and Buffalo Jewish Federation leadership will be invited to attend.

Ways to contact your legislator and share your issues of concern: Find your legislator here.

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JCRC director Mara Koven-Gelman, JCRC chair Deborah Goldman, BJF governor Amelida Weinmann, BJF CEO Rob Goldberg meet with Buffalo City Council Member Niagara District David Rivera

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Larry Rubin, Deborah Goldman, Mara Koven-Gelman meet with City of Buffalo Council Member University District Rasheed Wyatt

“Fight for the things you care about, but do it in a way that will lead others to join you.”

– Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg

Jewish Holy Days 2024 – 2028

Click on the calendar to view larger.

This list of Jewish Holy Days is designed to help in the planning and scheduling of events (e.g. graduations, examinations, registration, assemblies, athletic events, open houses, and conferences) in order to minimize conflicts that involve the absence of Jewish students and personnel. Please note that the High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are the among the holiest and most observed holidays in the Jewish faith. All Jewish holidays begin at sunset the day before the dates listed. Please contact for any questions or explanations.

Click here for an entire multi-faith calendar.

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Diversity Council

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Diversity and Inclusion Committee

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