This month we are spotlighting several individuals who are participating in LiNK’s current Intro to Judaism class. Today, we are delighted to feature Todd Geise, Director of Marketing for Jewish Family Services of Western New York (JFS).
Todd holds a master’s degree in adult education and a bachelor’s degree in French language and literature, both from Buffalo State College. Originally from a small village in the Finger Lakes Region, he moved to Buffalo at the age of 17 to attend college and considers Buffalo to be his home and hometown. His career has involved both for- and non-profit positions in marketing, sales, and fundraising, and he has had the opportunity to experience different cultures through professional travel to more than 20 countries. He speaks fluent French with a strong proficiency in Spanish. Todd is an avid amateur gardener and bird watcher, follower of politics, reader of fantasy literature, and resides in the University District of Buffalo with his partner of 28 years and their small brood of Chihuahuas: Oliver, Max, Mina, and Miss Lu.
“As a marketer, I firmly believe that you must understand the history and nature of the organization and product or service that is offered,” he shared. “Otherwise, how could you possibly communicate its mission, vision, and values?” Todd was raised with no religion or deep cultural heritage, but has found a home of sorts at JFS. When offered the opportunity to take the Intro to Judaism course, it was an easy decision for him. “Not only would I expand my knowledge about the agency I work for, but I would also be able to learn about Judaism as a religion and culture,” he said.
Two class sessions within the Intro program stand out to Todd. The first was a discussion about God and the various ways Judaism allows for self-reflection and personal approach to how God is incorporated into one’s life. The second was a discussion about Tanakh that provided a guide for its reading and study, and which, in Todd’s view, is a more sensible approach compared to how it is traditionally presented. “As a result of these two sessions,” Todd reflects, “a plan is slowly forming in my mind and in my heart.”
For more information on the new Intro to Judaism class beginning February 2nd, or any other Adult Learning through LiNK click HERE , register at BIT.LY/LINKADULTSPRING2022 or if you’d like to speak with Susan Schwartz, email her here.