JC Power 100: Numbers 50 - 11

Part two of our guide to the power players in anglo-Jewry. Our panel pick their list from 50 to 31. Here, we explain the reasoning behind their decisions


50: Ruth Green

Ruth Green has set an example for women looking to take on senior roles in communal leadership. A supporter of Women in Jewish Leadership commission, she joined the Jewish Leadership Council's trustee board this year, saying she was "excited" to take on the role. She comes from a youth movement background in Reform Judaism - as a former northern field worker for RSY Netzer and youth and community worker for North Western Reform Synagogue - but is now a member of Highgate United Synagogue. A trustee of the UJIA, she works on the Israel Experience bursary allocations committee and promoted the "Tenner for Tour" grassroots fundraising campaign. She is also co-chair of the UJIA Lead Now board, a programme for youth movement workers and UJS sabbaticals. Green - a senior counsellor with 25 years experience - has gone full circle, returning to work at the progressive King Alfred School in Golders Green where she was a pupil.

49: Dayan Menachem Gelley

The award of the title of "head" of the London Beth Din earlier this year formally recognised Dayan Gelley's expertise in Jewish law. It also confirmed him in the role he had effectively played as the senior dayan of the central Orthodox ecclesiastical authority for the past seven years. Educated at Gateshead and Israel's Ponevez Yeshivah, he has impeccable Charedi credentials and has maintained the Beth Din's reputation as a respected halachic body in the wider Orthodox world. But he has also displayed flexibility, permitting women to chair synagogues and become trustees of the United Synagogue. And while he may not have been over the moon at Chief Rabbi Mirvis's decision to go to the Limmud conference, he showed prudence and tact in respecting it.

48: Hannah Weisfeld

The 33-year-old has emerged as one of the leading voices of the moderate centre-left on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. She insists that her Yachad organisation (which means together), is "avowedly pro-Israel" but Weisfeld is also fierce critic of Israeli policies in the West Bank. During Operation Protective Edge she has made numerous media appearances on the BBC and Al Jazeera, advocating a middle-ground position on the conflict. She claims that since July Yachad has gained 1,000 new supporters and raised over £30,000 in donations. Previously a long-time member and head of education for the left-wing Zionist youth group, Habonim Dror, Weisfeld says her background in the movement inspired her passion for Israel. In addition to online petitions and letter writing campaigns, Yachad also organises group trips to the West Bank with a particular focus on Israel's military court system.

47: Karen Phillips/Mark Adlestone

As chief executive and chairman respectively, Karen Phillips and Mark Adlestone are responsible for the running of Manchester's leading Jewish welfare charity. They are paired together in the list because neither would have achieved what they have without the support of the other. Together, they oversaw the merging of the Federation of Jewish Services, the city's largest charity, with the Heathlands Care Village, followed by a multi-million-pound redevelopment of the site. Phillips began her charitable work at the age of 16 before becoming a probation officer. Unimpressed with the help offered to her sick mother by Jewish welfare groups, she set about professionalising services and raising standards. Her work has earned her an MBE. Adlestone is a popular and successful businessman, running Beaverbrooks the Jewellers and regularly picking up awards for the chain's level of staff satisfaction and its charitable giving.

46: Lord Winston

A regular presenter and contributor to a range of television programmes, fertility expert Lord Winston is as well known for his broadcast work as he is for his scientific research. He was inspired to become a doctor after his father died as a result of medical negligence when he was nine-years-old. Over the course of his career he became famous for pioneering techniques to improve IVF treatment. He is a regular contributor to current affairs programmes, such as Panorama, and has appeared on the panel show Have I Got News for You. As chairman of the Genesis Research Trust he has helped raise over £13 million to establish the Institute of Reproductive and Developmental Biology, which now funds high quality research into women's health and babies. Within the community he has supported the UJIA's annual fundraising dinners and has often discussed the influence of Judaism on his life and career. Married to Lira Helen Feigenbaum, the couple have three children.

45: Rabbi Shoshana Boyd Gelfand

The high-flying American briefly made history as the first female rabbi to be professional head of a synagogue movement when she became Reform chief executive in 2011. But after a few months she bowed out for family reasons. Instead, she has been able to apply her talent for forward-thinking as director of the Pears-funded JHub, the centre for social action and innovation which has helped to nurture ventures such as Mitzvah Day, the Moishe House and the Jewish Volunteering Network. Interested in new ideas of community-building, she has fostered initiatives which particularly appeal to the young. She recently published a collection of Jewish folk talks for children.

44: Raymond Simonson

Jewish culture has rocketed in London - thanks in, no small measure, to Simonson. As CEO of the JW3 community centre on Finchley Road, which opened its doors last September, he has overseen a cultural renaissance. He is a visible presence, regularly mingling with JW3's 4,000 monthly visitors and promoting events with gusto. His passion for the centre - and for community action in general - is clear, having finally seen the building become a £50 million reality after a decade in the making. But then, he is hardly a stranger to high-profile communal development. During his six-year run as executive director of Limmud, he welcomed thousands of British Jews to the annual conference, expanding its programme to appeal to an increasingly diverse audience.

43: Joshua Rowe

As chair of governors of King David High School in Manchester, Rowe is a leading voice on Jewish education, and has been a fierce defender of faith schools in the national press. A major philanthropist, in 2013, he produced a handbook on Israel in order to improve the public's perception of the country, and ensured it was provided for free to all school pupils who wanted to learn more. He hit the headlines this year when he wrote a letter to The Times blaming the government's failure to provide funding for gifted pupils for British schools' weak performances compared to international rivals. "If we are serious about raising standards, then I suggest the first step is to ensure that our brightest and most gifted pupils are fully resourced and successful schools are rewarded," he said.

42: Jonathan Wittenberg

The softly-spoken senior rabbi of the Masorti movement is one of the few UK rabbis with an international reputation. A voice of progressive traditionalism, he has the ability to address questions that trouble many contemporary Jews. Under his leadership, the New North London Synagogue has grown into one of the country's largest and most vibrant communities with 3,000 souls and a strong emphasis on tikkun olam. His pastoral commitment to his congregation may have sometimes prevented him playing a role on the wider Jewish stage but he is widely respected for his interfaith engagement outside. A famed canophile - his dog Mitzpah accompanied him on a charity walk from Frankfurt to London - his love of nature and literature make him one of the most evocative writers and speakers on Jewish spirituality.

41: Lord Feldman

From playing tennis with David Cameron to the benches of the House of Lords, Andrew Feldman has been part of the Tories' so-called Notting Hill set since graduating from Oxford alongside the now Prime Minister. The pair were once said to be "wedded together". After qualifying as a lawyer, he took over the family clothing company and became a key Conservative Party fundraiser, eventually becoming its deputy treasurer and chairman. Described as decent, straightforward and a man who gets things done, he is a leading supporter of charities, including Jewish Care.

40: Danny Rich

As the chief executive of Liberal Judaism since late 2004, Rabbi Rich is the dominant figure in one of the few mainstream movements which continues to expand in membership. He is an outspoken advocate of single-sex marriage and making social action a "key component of messianic realisation". At Liberal Judaism's biennial conference this May, he said: "Our advocacy of equal marriage was not about media popularity but righting a historic injustice." Before taking up the chief executive position, he served as the rabbi for Kingston Liberal congregation and received his rabbinical ordination at Leo Baeck College.

39: Vivian Wineman

The Board of Deputies president is British Jewry's highest-ranking elected official. A Cambridge graduate and solicitor, he ran his own legal firm for 25 years. He makes regular media appearances in his Board role and also lectures on Jewish history. Wineman holds a variety of other leadership roles, including at the Jewish Leadership Council, European Jewish Congress and UK Inter Faith Network.

38: Simon Schama

The historian achieved the impossible last year when he condensed the entire history of Judaism into his four-part BBC documentary series The Story of the Jews. Even more impressively, he held the nation's attention during its month-long run. Born in London and educated in Cambridge, the popular academic now divides his time between the UK and the United States, where he works as professor of art history and history at Columbia University in New York. His specialities are vast, meaning he is a go-to authority on Jewish, Dutch and French history, and is also considered a formidable art critic. The award-winning author is a well-respected player both inside and outside the community - when he talks, people listen.

37: Luciana Berger

Britain's youngest Jewish MP, Berger was elected to represent Labour in the Liverpool Wavertree constituency in 2010, aged just 29. A former Labour Friends of Israel director, she is climbing the party ranks and is Ed Miliband's current shadow public health minister. She is widely tipped for a cabinet role if Labour win next year's election. She regularly supports a range of Jewish charities, including Wizo and World Jewish Relief, and has held roles on a number of Jewish political organisations. She has recently announced her engagement to Liverpool music agent, Alistair Goldsmith.

36: Howard Jacobson

Often labelled the English Philip Roth, but preferring his own self-description as the Jewish Jane Austen, Jacobson is the country's foremost Jewish novelist. His take on British Jewish identity, The Finkler Question, won the 2010 Man Booker Prize – the first comic novel ever to do so – and in the process lifted him to literary stardom. Over a 31-year career encompassing 18 books, he has occasionally stepped away from his writing desk to appear on television, most memorably perhaps in his 1993 documentary Roots Schmoots. Born in Manchester, the son of a market trader, he has said that he has "always felt as much outside the Jewish experience as in it".

35: Martin Paisner

Martin Paisner is one of the most influential legal figures in the UK, as a partner of international law firm Berwin Leighton Paisner, and specialising in charity law. He is also a heavyweight in the community as chairman of Weizmann UK, and a trustee of the Jerusalem Foundation, Shaare Zedek UK, Holocaust Educational Trust and the Woolf Institute. Paisner received an honorary PhD from the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, in recognition of his longstanding support, since as a teenager he visited the institute with his father. A St Paul's School and Oxford graduate, the father-of-four has been described as an intellectual. He collects rare antiquarian books.

34: Dayan Isaac Berger

The president of the Manchester Beth Din is regarded by many as the community's de facto head, a rabbi with a ready smile who radiates authority. He was once tipped as a leader of the London Beth Din but his decision to go north proved a coup for Manchester. The MBD is a significant player in kosher certification with a catalogue spanning such household names as Kellogg's Rice Crispies and Heinz Ketchup, while its approval of the first two local eruvs have been a boon for observant families. Dayan Berger combines talmudic erudition with worldly acumen. He is renowned for his knowledge of business ethics and his skills as a mediator.

33: Amy Braier

She joined the Pears Foundation as deputy director in 2007 and was made director in 2012. Working closely with Trevor Pears, she heads its grant-making strategy, and in particular, focuses on Holocaust education and higher education. She also sits on the executive committee of the UK Task Force, which looks at issues affecting Arabs in Israel. She is also a trustee of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust and a former director of the parliamentary Committee against Antisemitism.

32: Avram Pinter

Widely regarded and respected as the go-to man of Stamford Hill, Pinter has made a name for himself as the link between the strictly Orthodox and the wider community. Friendly and accessible, he provides a modern voice on Charedi issues - both as trustee of the union of Orthodox Hebrew congregations and on the London Jewish forum - and advises the government and the media on community issues. As headteacher of the Yesodey Hatorah school, Rabbi Pinter has also made his mark on education. He won full state aid for Yesodey Hatorah Girls' School, guiding it to outstanding reviews by Ofsted.

31: David Aaronovich

The broadcaster and columnist for the JC and The Times started his political life on the far-left. A communist as a student, he was controversial among some left-wing circles for his support for the 2003 Iraq War. He clashed with George Galloway on Question Time, responding to one of the Respect MP's jibes by saying: "I might have been a communist, George, but you were still to the left of me." He has had two careers in television - as a producer and BBC manager. Since taking up writing he has made documentaries on antisemitism in the Middle East and anti-Israel discourse in the media and politics.

30: Benjamin Perl

The unofficial leader of the movement to support Orthodox faith schools, Perl has overseen a revamp in the way the community's education is organised and financed, paying for 20 schools along the way. Among the Israeli-born businessman's many projects, he is responsible for Sacks Morasha Jewish Primary School, Finchley, the Beis Yaakov Primary School, Colindale, and Yavneh College in Borehamwood - the jewel in his crown. Not bad for someone who made his money selling picture frames, after abandoning his first role as a rabbi.

29: Chaya Spitz

While men may rule the roost in the rabbinate and yeshivot, Charedi women are increasingly making their mark in other areas of community life. No more so than the women who run the Interlink Foundation, an advisory and training service which helps some 100 charities. Its director Chaya Sptiz presides over an operation which has set high standards of professionalism in the strictly Orthodox voluntary sector. Her gentle manner and participation in wider communal forums make her one of Stamford Hill's most effective advocates. Dedicated to her community's way of life, she is willing to address the challenges faced by its expanding population.

28: Jonathan Boyd

Starting life in academia, Jonathan Boyd took over the helm as executive director of the Jewish Policy Research institute in early 2010. Since then he has played a key role in writing and overseeing the publication of major statistical reports which reveal the current state of the community. He has revitalised the JPR and provides the statistics which are the core planning material for the community, especially its care organisations and schools. He is maried to Rabbi Shoshana Boyd Gelfand.

27: Rabbi Rafi Zarum

As dean of the London School of Jewish Studies, Rabbi Zarum oversees the centre's world-class teacher-training programmes, ensuring the community's education sector continues to thrive. His influence stretches beyond his day job. He is an in-demand speaker at education conferences around the world, and is credited with making Jewish learning accessible, thanks to his Torah L'Am crash course and Jam-Packed Bible study guide. A prolific tweeter, he posts under the name SuperSedra.

26: Matthew Gould

The highly regarded Gould is the first Jew to be British ambassador to Israel. Before being appointed, he had difficult postings in Manila, Islamabad and Tehran - as the number two at the embassy in Iran, he made a point of attending synagogue, and before arriving in Tel Aviv he met British Jewish and Muslim communities to explain his approach to his role in Israel. At his prompting, the UK-Israel Tech Hub was created with a dedicated tech envoy, Saul Klein - the first position of its kind in government. His unstinting efforts promoting trade and hi-tech collaboration between the two countries was recognised by the Queen with a CMG in this year's Birthday Honours.

25: Lord Mendelsohn

A former Labour Friends of Israel chair, Jon Mendelsohn co-founded LLM Communications, was an adviser to Tony Blair, and Gordon Brown's chief fundraiser. In that role he was embroiled in the scandal over the party's donations - but was never found to have been involved in any wrongdoing. Ennobled last year by Ed Miliband, he is regarded as a key Jewish go-to figure in the party. He is a trustee of the Holocaust Educational Trust and chair of the Stern Advisory Group. As chairman of Finchley United Synagogue he has overseen Kinloss' growth into a powerhouse of British shul life. Alongside his wife, Facebook executive Nicola, Lord Mendelsohn is part of one of Anglo-Jewry's leading power couples.

24: Karen Pollock

As chief executive of the Holocaust Educational Trust, Karen Pollock runs a charity dedicated to informing people about the Shoah. Few communal activists are better connected at Westminster and everyone - from the Prime Minster down - will take her calls. She is heavily involved in David Cameron's commission to find ways to educate future generations about the Holocaust. Her background is key to her role. Having been prominent in the National Union of Students, she become director of the Parliamentary Committee Against Antisemitism and is a member of the Jewish Human Rights Coalition UK. She has represented the UK and the Jewish community at international conferences, including the United Nations Conferences against Racism, and is a founding trustee of the Holocaust Memorial Day Trust.

23: Leo Noe

The property magnate is one of Britain's wealthiest people, with a personal fortune estimated at more than half a billion pounds. His joint British-Israeli ventures include ownership of some of Israel's biggest shopping malls and property assets valued at around £8 billion. It is his huge philanthropic work in the community that leads to his position on this list. He is a leading voice in Jewish education, and is patron of education and welfare groups. Noe has developed a particular interest in special needs and has also spearheaded initiatives in Israel to encourage young Charedi men to enter the work world.

22: Jonathan Miller

As headteacher of JFS, Jonathan Miller leads the largest Jewish school in Europe. He joined in 1984 as a chemistry teacher, before rising to take the top job in 2008. Since then, he has guided the education of over 4,000 children who have passed through the school, their academic results regularly pushing JFS to the top of the league tables.

21: Bill Benjamin

A leading light in the next generation of communal leaders, Californian-born Benjamin has wasted no time in coming to prominence. In the 13 or so years he has been in the UK, he has served as co-chair of Masorti Judaism - from 2008-12 - and as a member of the Jewish Leadership Council's Jewish schools commission. He is also trustee of the Jewish Community Secondary School in north London. But his most important position is chairman of the UJIA, having succeeded Mick Davis in 2013. Married with three children, his day job is senior partner of Area Management, a global asset management firm.

20: Jonathan Freedland

Award-winning journalist, broadcaster and opinion-former, Freedland is known for his incisive views and interest in the US along with the politics of Britain and the Middle East. He writes a weekly column for the Guardian and a monthly piece for the JC. He was named Columnist of the Year in the What the Papers Say awards for 2002 and was awarded the David Watt Prize for Journalism in 2008. He has also written seven books under his own name. Bring Home the Revolution won a Somerset Maugham Award and caused some controversy for arguing that Britain was in dire need of a constitutional and cultural overhaul. In 2005, he published Jacob's Gift, a memoir which told the stories of three generations of his own family, as well as exploring wider questions of identity. He has also published five best-selling novels as Sam Bourne. The Righteous Men became a number one bestseller in the UK, selling over 500,000 copies.

19: Yotam Ottolenghi

Israeli-born Ottolenghi has helped change the way the British eat, with his London restaurants, Nopi and Ottolenghi, and his three bestselling books, introducing modern Israeli/Jewish cookery to the UK. He carried out his IDF service in army intelligence and then after military service went to Tel Aviv University, completing a master's degree in comparative literature. During his studies he worked on the newsdesk of Haaretz. In 1997 he moved to the UK, with plans to study for a PhD, but instead enrolled at Le Cordon Bleu cookery school in London for six months. He has lived here ever since, and received British citizenship in 2012. He has a young son with his partner, Karl Allen.

18: Daniel Taub

The versatile Finchley-born Israeli envoy is as comfortable debating on television as he is giving a Bible shiur to an Anglican church. An Oxford and Harvard-educated lawyer, just two years after making aliyah he found himself at the top table of Middle East peace negotiations, representing Israel at the 1991 Madrid Conference. In 1993 and 1994, he took part in the landmark Oslo talks with Yasir Arafat's PLO and was also involved in the aborted attempts to reach a peace deal with Syria in 2000. He once quipped: "This probably makes me the world expert in failed negotiations" - unusually self-deprecating for an Israeli diplomat perhaps, but then Taub was born in Britain and understands the community better than any previous ambassador.

17: Professor David Latchman

What is striking about David Latchman is his versatility. He is a scientist, one of the country's leading geneticists. He is a noted administrator, master of Birkbeck College in London. And he is a businessman, having co-founded a research company which was sold for millions. But it is in his role as chairman of the Maurice Wohl Charitable Foundation that he is best known in the community. Set up by the professor's late uncle, the philanthropist Maurice Wohl, the foundation has donated millions to Jewish causes, including health, welfare and education. It was a major contributor to Jewish Care's £44 million Maurice and Vivienne Wohl campus in Golders Green and the recently opened Wohl Ilford Jewish Primary School (IJPS) building in Redbridge.

16: Steven Lewis

As chairman of Jewish Care, the largest communal welfare organisation, Steven Lewis sparked debate this year when he asserted that the majority of British Jews do not donate enough time or money to their charities. A self-described traditional Jew, the Hampstead Garden Suburb Synagogue member has long been involved in communal activities. As a teenager, he spent Sunday mornings teaching Hebrew classes to 10- and 11-year-olds in Stanmore, where he grew up. From 1990 to 1994, he chaired Young Jewish Care. Now, while running a successful property company, the 51-year-old takes clients and colleagues on tours around Jewish Care campuses and encourages all he meets to attend charity fundraisers or donate. A passionate Tottenham Hotspur supporter, who met his wife Alicia at a JC dance, Lewis lives in Highgate, has four children and encourages them all to volunteer.

15: David Cameron

British Jewry has few better friends than the Prime Minister. He has repeatedly expressed his support for Israel and shown his determination to protect Jewish practices in this country. His Holocaust Commission has been tasked with planning for the future of Shoah education in this country. He made a successful visit to Israel in March during which he spoke at the Knesset and announced tens of millions of pounds of technology deals. During the Gaza conflict this summer Mr Cameron resolutely stood by Israel, refusing to bow to pressure from his coalition partners and opposition leaders to criticise the military action taken against Hamas. His praise for Anglo-Jewry's contribution to British life was pressed home at a last year's Chanucah reception in Downing Street which was described by some attendees as a love-in between the community and the Prime Minister.

14: Dayan Chanoch Ehrentreu

The former head of the London Beth Din may have retired from the post six years ago but he remains the rabbi many other Orthodox rabbis look up to. Now in his 80s, he continues to exert influence, running his own steibl and acting as head of the itinerant European Beth Din. While he kept a tight leash on Chief Rabbi Sacks's modernism during his tenure at the Beth Din, his go-ahead for the north-west London eruv in the teeth of strictly Orthodox opposition in 2003 was groundbreaking. His power may now be on the wane with a new chief rabbi, but his signature to a declaration against Limmud in the wake of Chief Rabbi Mirvis's decision to attend it nevertheless dissuaded a number of other Orthodox rabbis from going, too.

13: Lord Finkelstein

The associate editor of The Times and regular columnist for the JC, Daniel Finkelstein is not only one of the most prominent Jewish journalists in the country, and a serial winner of columnist of the year awards, he has also maintained an influential position at the heart of the Conservative Party. He served as the director of the Conservative Research Department under John Major in the 1990s, and was made a life peer by David Cameron last year. He is a friend and trusted adviser to the Tory leadership, and is particularly close to George Osborne, who spoke at his 50th birthday party. He is also chairman of the most influential think tank in the country, Policy Exchange.

12: Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner

Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner has made it her business to get Reform Judaism's voice heard. As the senior rabbi to the movement, she is a regular radio panellist who tweets on key issues affecting British Jews. A dual Israeli-British citizen, she lived in Israel for 15 years. Wanting to widen her horizons with the study of other faiths, she read divinity at Cambridge. Outside tutorials, she threw herself into Jewish activities; commuting once a week to do youth work at Radlett and Bushey Reform Synagogue. The great-niece of the late Chief Rabbi Israel Brodie, she enrolled at Leo Baeck College in 2004, and in her final year she began working as a student rabbi at North Western Reform Synagogue where she remained until 2011 before taking up her position as senior rabbi. Married with three children, she lives in London, but has not ruled out making aliyah in the future.

11: Gerald Ronson

In the last Power 100, Ronson was placed at number two and cited as the community's top philanthropist. Eight years on, he has slipped down the list - mainly because several other, newer names have emerged - but remains a hugely influential figure. In recent times, he has overseen the opening of the Jewish Community Secondary School, for which he secured funding, become an executive member of the Jewish Leadership Council and continued to guide the Community Security Trust -one of the jewels in Anglo-Jewry's crown - as its chairman and chief funder. His Heron Property Group - rebuilt after he was jailed in 1990 for his part in the Guinness shares scandal - constructed the Heron Tower, which, when it opened in 2009, was London's tallest building. He is known for his devotion both to family - he and Gail, his wife of 45 years, have four children - and for his devotion to hard work, although at the age of 75, he could be forgiven for easing off on the 80-hour weeks. He says: "I've never been shy to ask for money. I think the best askers are the best givers."

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