This year’s annual policy conference by the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) featured plenty of heavy-hitting policy makers, like Barack Obama and Benjamin Netanyahu. Making sense of the political landscape they face, however, may be just as important. That’s where Dr. Steven Windmueller, a Professor at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), came in.
Windmueller, the Rabbi Alfred Gottschalk Emeritus Professor of Jewish Communal Service at the College-Institute’s Jack H. Skirball Campus in Los Angeles, is a keen observer of American Jewish affairs and politics. He shared his insights on March 5 as a conference participant in a panel discussion entitled, “Red State, Blue State: The Changing Face of American Politics.” Topics included how major demographic shifts, the digital and social media revolutions, and youth involvement made the last election cycles different from previous ones and how the upcoming presidential and congressional races will continue to challenge long-standing assumptions.
AIPAC’s Police Conference was held in Washington, D.C. from March 4 to 6 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. With thousands of participants from all 50 states, it was the largest gathering of the pro-Israel movement.
Windmueller holds a doctorate in International Relations from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a former Dean of HUC-JIR’s Los Angeles Campus and former Director of what is now its School of Jewish Nonprofit Management. His writings can be found at his blog, The Wind Report, www.thewindreport.com. In addition, his election blogs are also posted with the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles.
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 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