Reform chief executive to go

Reform chief executive Ben Rich is to leave after two years at the helm after the movement decided to abolish the role.

Some of his duties will be taken over by board members in order to streamline administration as part of a strategic review.

In a letter to Reform communities, Mr Rich and movement chairman Jenny Pizer said the aim was “to focus limited resources outwards on serving communities. This has required us to think radically about reducing costs and we are convinced that the difficult decisions we are now taking are the right way forward for the organisation.”

Ms Pizer said: “Ben has really helped the movement to move forward over the past two years, overhauling the organisation and putting in place a strategic plan which gives us renewed focus. He has been instrumental in promoting Reform Jewish values and raising the profile of MRJ in the wider community and beyond.”

Mr Rich said that he was “extremely proud” of what had been achieved during his time in charge. “We have put together a strong leadership team and completed a major review which will ensure we are delivering in accordance with our members’ priorities,” he said.

“As we move from strategy to implementation I have taken the view that now is the right time for me to move on to fresh challenges.”

In the meantime, the movement has strengthened its educational team with the appointment of West London Synagogue's Rabbi Debbie Young-Somers as its new community educator.

Last updated: 2:59pm, February 1 2013