With the successful completion of its Capital Campaign, surpassing its goal at more than $9.5 million, on May 29 the Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia (the J) announced its new name: the Pozez Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia. The renaming follows a significant investment by couple Norman Pozez and Melinda Bieber, both leaders within The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington.
Pozez and Bieber said they were motivated to fuel the growth and engagement of the Northern Virginia Jewish community and support its continued vibrancy as an economic center for the region. In 2017, the Greater Washington Jewish Community Demographic Study found that more than 120,000 Jews (out of 300,000 Jews in Greater Washington) live in Northern Virginia. Moreover, the Jewish community nearly doubled in size over the past 15 years.
“The demographic study revealed not only that the Jewish population of Northern Virginia has grown significantly in the past decade, but that there is a clear need for our community to commit to strengthening Jewish life here,” said Pozez.
Following the study, Pozez chaired The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington Strategic Plan highlighting the importance of Northern Virginia in strengthening the overall fabric of Jewish life in Greater Washington (the JCC is a Federation partner agency).
“The success and future of our Greater Washington Jewish community at large depends on a connected, engaged Jewish population across Virginia, DC, and Maryland,” he said. “The J has worked for more than four decades to build strong ties within the broader local community, and makes it possible for those of all backgrounds — and across five Virginia counties — to connect with Jewish heritage and culture.”
The gift was intended to set an example for other donors as well. “The focus on strengthening Jewish life in Northern Virginia as a core priority of Federation has proven to me that my family’s gift to the J is a strategic investment, and one that I hope inspires others to follow suit,” Pozez added.
“We are heartened and grateful for the faith that Norm and his family have placed in the leadership and staff of our JCC,” said Executive Director Jeff Dannick. “We are looking forward to partnering with Norm, the leadership and staff of The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, as well as area synagogues, inspirational leaders, and our diverse and disbursed population to grow our vibrant and welcoming Jewish community.”
By Kol HaBirah Staff