Rabbi David Ellenson to Speak at Israel President Shimon Peres's First Annual Presidential Conference, Facing Tomorrow

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Facing Tomorrow, President Shimon Peres' first annual conference, will look closely at the trends and developments that are mapping the future, and serve as an incubator for some selected proactive responses. Participants will be charged with examining, confronting, and responding to three intertwining futures: the global tomorrow, the Jewish tomorrow, and the Israeli tomorrow. Each "tomorrow" – Jewish, Israeli, and world – will be examined through a set of three critical lenses: The leadership necessary to navigate the challenges ahead, the value systems that are meant to guide our conduct, and the creativity required to keep pace with a rapidly changing and digitally interconnected world. 

Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D., President of the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, will speak on the relevancy of the Jewish legacy to the world's future on a panel on Wednesday morning, May 14th. 

Facing Tomorrow will be a synergistic gathering of major world leaders, Jews and non-Jews, thinkers and doers, poets and physicists, rabbis and entrepreneurs, including the next generation of leadership – young men and women of exceptional promise and originality. President Peres is deeply committed to the success ofFacing Tomorrow and will be personally engaged in the conference throughout its proceedings. 

In addition to plenary meetings, working groups, and a host of keynote speakers, fifty panels will span a broad spectrum of topics. Most panels, plenary meetings and keynote addresses will be simulcast on the World Wide Web. Facing Tomorrow will also be a laboratory for practical initiatives intended to nurture the thriving of Israel, of the Jewish people, of humanity. 

In announcing this conference, which will take place May 13-15, 2008 in Jerusalem, President Peres said, "In all my years, I have been party to many dreams. The ones that became reality had one thing in common: they were all blessed with the proper mix of imagination, will, and compassion. I am quite sure that all three of these very human qualities will be abundantly evident at this conference, and will afford it the intellectual fertility, curiosity, and enthusiasm any meaningful consideration of tomorrow requires." 

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's first institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu