Women try leading questions

February 16, 2012
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The role of women in the United Synagogue and the wider Jewish community was discussed at the US's first women's conference, held on Sunday in central London.

More than 50 women participated in a programme geared towards improving leadership skills and knowledge. Topics included achieving a work-life balance, making one's voice heard and changing the face of education for women.

During lunch, Laura Marks, leader of the JLC's Commission on Women in Jewish Leadership, discussed the need to correct "the gender imbalance at trustee level". Limmud chair Carolyn Bogush was interviewed about her role by Rosalind Preston.

Conference co-chair Dalia Cramer said: "The real success of the event is that so many women felt motivated to offer to take up leadership positions across a variety of different organisations. The conference marks a sea change in the role of women in the United Synagogue."

Meanwhile, the JLC has been pursuing its research on women in leadership roles with focus groups for Manchester lay leaders and professionals.

"The Manchester groups will focus on ideas for change," Ms Marks said. "The holy grail is to see what would engage people to be involved in the community, especially high-profile women who have serious roles in the non-Jewish world."

JLC council member and Manchester leader Lucille Cohen looked forward to "harnessing more efficiently the human resources of all those capable women in the community whose leadership abilities are being under-utilised". The JLC is expected to extend its research to Leeds in the near future.

    Last updated: 3:35pm, February 16 2012