Dr. Kerry M. Olitzky is an associate at Mersky, Jaffe & Associates (MJA), a consulting group that specializes in fundraising and executive search solutions. At MJA, he focuses on new membership models, creating income centers for nonprofits, as well as start-ups. He also helps in strategic planning for boomers and for recovery centers and programs. Dr. Olitzky is the former long time executive director of Big Tent Judaism (previously the Jewish Outreach Institute), a national independent organization dedicated to bringing Judaism to interfaith families and the unaffiliated. He served as visiting professor at the Abraham Geiger Kolleg in Berlin, Germany and has been a Fellow at the City University Graduate Center in its Jewish Studies Program.
Dr. Olitzky has been named as one of "The 50 Most Influential Rabbis in America" by Newsweek. Formerly, he served as vice president of the Wexner Heritage Foundation, the premier adult Jewish learning and Jewish leadership program in North America. Previously, he was national Dean of Adult Jewish Learning and Living of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion where he served on the faculty and administration for 15 years following his tenure as rabbi at Congregation Beth Israel in West Hartford, CT. A leader in the development of innovative Jewish education, particularly for adults, he has shaped training programs for clergy of all faiths, especially in the area of pastoral care and counseling in the Jewish community. He has done pioneering work in the area of Jewish Twelve Step spirituality, as well as Jewish Gerontology. He is the author of over 75 books and hundreds of articles in a variety of fields, including four books on addiction and recovery, all published by Jewish Lights. His opinion pieces are published in leading publications throughout North America and in Israel. Among his most recent publications are: a new translation and commentary on the book of Job with Leonard Kravitz (Wipf and Stock), an inclusive haggadah called Welcome to the Seder(Behrman House) and children’s books: Where’s the Potty of this Ark(Kar-Ben) and The Littlest Candle: A Hanukkah Story(Kalaniot).
Dr. Olitzky is publishing his children's book titled: A Whale of a Tale: A Sabbath Summer Solstice Story with Relevant Publishers LLC in June 2022 for ebook; August for print. A Whale of a Tale helps children discover the challenges of calculating the Shabbat with a circular summer sun that never sets. This is an excellent story for inquisitive minds and those who live in far northern or southern hemispheres.
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