Dr. Gary P. Zola Invited to Participate in the National Conference on Citizenship in Washington

Monday, September 1, 2008

He will join panel of policy experts that will draft citizenship agenda for next President

CINCINNATI, OH — Dr. Gary P. Zola, Executive Director of the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives and Associate Professor of the American Jewish Experience at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, has been invited by the National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC) to join a panel of national policy experts to develop an agenda for the next President on citizen participation. The group will convene on Monday, September 22nd in Washington following the organization's Annual Conference, "Beyond the Vote." The meeting will take place at the National Archives and Records Administration. 

Dr. Zola—who served as national chair of the Commission for Commemorating the 350 Years of American Jewish History, organized to help our nation mark the 350th anniversary of Jewish communal life in North America (1654-2004)—was also recently named to the Advisory Committee of the national Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission. 

Founded in 1946 to sustain the spirit of cooperation that bound citizens together during World War II, the NCoC was given three Congressional mandates:

  1. To hold an annual national conference on citizenship on or about "Citizenship Day," September 17
  2. To assist in the development of more dynamic procedures for making citizenship more effective, including the promotion and encouragement of local, State, and regional citizenship conferences
  3. To indicate the ways and means by which various organizations may contribute concretely to the development of a more active, alert, enlightened, conscientious, and progressive citizenry in our country.

NCoC's annual conference on civic participation is attended by several hundred foundation executives, corporate executives, policy-makers and non-profits concerned with the quality of national and community service, American history and civics education and engagement in the political process, NCoC's core areas of interest. This year's keynote speaker will be Justice Sandra Day O'Connor. In addition to her remarks, NCoC will release its Civic Health Index, widely considered to be the preeminent measure of civic health in America, hear from Facebook co-founder Sean Parker and other experts on the true impact of the Internet on civic engagement, and from the leaders of four organizations engaging Americans of all ages in citizen service. "It is truly an honor to have been asked to be a part of this esteemed panel," said Zola. "Civic participation and volunteerism built this great nation. As we look towards the next administration and the challenges we will face as a nation, we must recognize that public policy will impact our lives, and examine ways to impact public policy through increased civic participation among all citizens." 

MEDIA: For more information, please contact Joyce Kamen at 513.543.8109. 

The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, founded in 1947 by its namesake on the Cincinnati, Ohio, campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, is committed to preserving a documentary heritage of the religious, organizational, economic, cultural, personal, social and family life of American Jewry. The Marcus Center contains over 15,000 linear feet of archives, manuscripts, nearprint materials, photographs, audio and videotapes, microfilm, and genealogical materials. 

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