Big News: An Office + A New Staff Position


Dear Kolot,

Exciting changes are afoot at Kolot Chayeinu!

This month, our administrative staff move to Kolot's first-ever office. For the first time in our almost 20-year-history, our administrative staff will be working together, not in isolation in their homes. Also for the first time ever, all of Kolot's administrative and congregational records and materials will be in one place. This move will help to better coordinate our vital back-end operations.

A huge thanks to Administrative Director Diane Kirschner, Data and Accounts Manager Efrat Baler-Moses and Kolot Board Treasurer Eric Sloan all of whom are coordinating this move and milestone for our community.

But the move to an office is just one of the changes upon which Kolot is embarking. This week, Kolot will also begin advertising a new job opening for a full-time Managing Director. The Managing Director will be responsible for all the secular operations of the congregation and will be our first-ever full-time administrative/operations staff member. This is a major leap for Kolot, reflecting a new skill set of talents for which we have not previously sought staff, and one that the Board feels is crucial to our continued success and effective operations.

Why the leap and why now?

Unlike many congregations struggling to retain members, Kolot continues to attract new people and grow. Just a few years ago, Kolot was barely half the size we are today and in the last couple of years, the pace of this growth has accelerated. This is great news --- it tells us that the warm, welcoming, diverse, independent community we have built has a wide appeal.

At the same time, Kolot's leadership has wrestled to keep up with the increase in program, services, and management oversight that our growth demands. We took a leap in 2009 and hired our first part-time Administrative Director, which enabled us to support our growth and to begin to professionalize our operations. We are indebted to Diane Kirschner for the hard work, skill and talent that she has brought to that post -since April 2009.

Kolot now finds itself at another transition point, one that requires us to further enhance our administrative staffing so that Board members and clergy can hand over to staff responsibility for virtually all day-to-day operations in a way that better supports our ongoing activities and aspirations. With Cantor Segal's ordination, Kolot now has two clergy leaders who provide more spiritual leadership, pastoral care, life cycle ceremonies support, religious education, and guidance to our growing membership. Our Children's Learning Program continues to flourish and expand, providing more learning opportunities for the youngest members of our congregation and requiring a larger school staff. And we have added to our custodial staff to cover increasing activity at Kolot in all the physical spaces in which we operate.

To respond to the challenges and opportunities of growth, we need a full-time staff leader responsible for managing organizational change, building capacity, overseeing the budget, playing a role in fundraising efforts and scaling up our organization. The new full-time position of Managing Director will be an essential part of Kolot's leadership team and will play a key role in the road ahead. Many congregations of Kolot's size (and indeed some that are smaller) have full-time Executive Directors and we see this Managing Director position as a solid step in that direction. 

Kolot's limited financial resources will not allow us to hire for this essential new position and also maintain our current part-time Administrative Director. Therefore, we will be phasing out the Administrative Director position this Spring as the new Managing Director position is filled.

In the interim, Diane Kirschner will remain as our part-time Administrative Director, overseeing our move to the new office and continuing to provide the valuable leadership she has offered in this position. While there will be time to communicate more extensive thanks to Diane, we convey now our appreciation for the diligent, thoughtful and professional leadership Diane has brought to her role as Administrative Director at Kolot Chayeinu. We appreciate her commitment and hard work.

The Managing Director position will be advertised in the coming days. Kolot members are welcome to apply. Applications will be due in the early days of February and we will consider and interview candidates immediately thereafter. We hope Kolot's first-ever Managing Director will take the helm in March or early April. This is a big and important shift for Kolot and we look forward to the possibilities and opportunities it will bring to our whole community.

As always, if we can answer questions about these actions of the Kolot Board of Directors, please contact us . And stay tuned for the Managing Director job posting in the coming days.

For the Board,

Cindy Greenberg, President

Phyllis Arnold, Vice President

Eric Sloan, Treasurer

Seth Borgos, Secretary

Melanie Holcomb, Officer-at-Large


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