Since 1958, URJ Eisner Camp has provided tens of thousands of children with a residential summer camping experience in a vibrant Reform Jewish living and learning environment. Located on 600 acres in the beautiful Berkshire Mountains of Western Massachusetts, Eisner Camp seeks a seasoned director who possesses the personal qualities, skill, and vision to lead one of the greatest Jewish experiential institutions in North America. The URJ camping system is among the most well-respected camping systems and Eisner is the largest of its 15 camps. At Eisner, Reform Judaism’s rich history and culture are lived every day. Our staff encourages the growth of Jewish values and learning in each of our campers, and our programming is carefully created to nurture a positive Jewish identity in both campers and staff.
Each summer, nearly 900 Eisner campers, and staff celebrate transformative and joyful Judaism in a camp environment known for programmatic excellence. Eisner creates an intentional, meaningful community that elevates the power and responsibility we have as individuals to make a difference in other people’s lives as well as the world around us. Our vibrant alumni base continues to sustain and inspire their beloved community. Many third-generation families attend camp as campers and staff, and our alumni’s generosity helps secure scholarship support and exciting new programs and facilities to address emerging needs.
The successful candidate will be an individual who:
Exhibits high “emotional intelligence,” prioritizes relationship building, is a good listener, is comfortable relating and interacting as a leader to parents, staff, children, faculty, alumni, donors, and advisory board members.
Understands the power of the overnight camp experience, and has a deep appreciation of the value and importance of Reform Jewish camping.
Is self-aware, is conscious of their own strengths and weaknesses, and collaborates well with people possessing complementary skills.
Demonstrates leadership, readily attracting others and inspiring them.
Is committed to Jewish life and is personally involved in the life of the Jewish community.
Understands, appreciates, and is prepared to promote the unique place of Reform Jewish literacy and Hebrew language in the Eisner Camp culture.
Possesses excellent communication skills, both verbal and written, with an appreciation of and ability to relate to community members of all ages.
Is capable of developing a compelling vision for Eisner Camp as an institution and as a community and is able to communicate that vision and align key stakeholders, as they seek to implement this vision in partnership with others.
Can comfortably delegate authority and responsibility, and is willing and able to support subordinates and enable them to succeed.
Is level-headed, with the temperament to remain and induce calm, especially in times of crisis.
Embodies essential Reform Movement values, including emphasis on racial equity, diversity, and inclusion, social justice, and support for Israel justice and pluralism.
Leadership: Lead, mentor, develop, and guide Eisner’s high-performance senior management and staff; actively engage and energize the joint Eisner/Crane Lake Advisory Board (which supports both Northeast camps), volunteers, alumni, funders, clergy, educators, congregations, and partnering organizations; ensure programmatic excellence and consistent quality of finance and administration, fundraising, communications, and systems; develop and cultivate year-round relationships with families, campers, and the broader Reform Jewish community.
Informal Jewish Education and Recreation: Create a welcoming and inspiring camp community where young people explore and experience their Jewish identity while joyfully celebrating Jewish life; leverage the experiences and skills of clergy, Jewish educators, and URJ congregational resources.
Planning: Develop and implement a strategic business planning process for program expansion into new summer and year-round markets; build partnerships in new markets, establishing relationships with regional funders and political and community leaders; publish and communicate program results as a model for regional and national replication; in partnership with the URJ North American headquarters, implement evaluation and measurement strategies.
Facilities/Non-Profit Management: Oversee an approximately $6.5 million annual budget to accomplish the camp’s strategic direction and assure fiscal integrity; plan capital needs of the Eisner property and facility; work with the URJ to design and budget for new, improved, or enhanced buildings and grounds.
Staff Hiring, Training, and Supervision: Lead the selection, training, coaching, and retention of full-time staff and summer counselors, specialists, international staff, and supervisors.
Health, Safety, and Security: Demonstrate commitment to and oversight of the highest standards of health, safety and security; provide health center/medical management; ensure compliance with the policies and standards of the URJ, local, state and federal laws, and the American Camp Association (ACA).
Recruitment, Marketing, and Social Media: Oversee the development and implementation of marketing strategies to prospective campers and their families; execute these strategies to effectively transmit the value of Jewish camping, Eisner, and other URJ programs.
Communications, Fundraising, and Development: Oversee and expand revenue-generating and fundraising activities to support existing and future program operations; develop a funding model for financial sustainability; steward and solicit donors; enhance all aspects of communications—from web presence to external relations—with the goal of creating a stronger brand; serve as an articulate and inspiring spokesperson for Eisner; raise awareness within the philanthropic and extended community about the value of Jewish camping, the URJ, and Eisner programming and needs.
Minimum of seven years of senior leadership experience in overnight Jewish camping, or related fields
Deep commitment to and understanding of informal Jewish education
Degree in a relevant field, Masters degree preferred
Experience in non-profit or business management
Demonstrated ability to move from vision to action to successful outcomes
Must be able to articulate, in an inspiring fashion, the mission of Eisner Camp and URJ camping to a wide variety of audiences and stakeholders
Knowledge of Reform/progressive Judaism and the ability to design and implement experiences that exemplify its concepts
Demonstrated experience with problem-solving, conflict resolution, and multi-tasking
Proven experience with fundraising, including donor engagement, solicitation, stewardship, and recognition, and developing and managing a fundraising committee
Experience and success in board development
Working knowledge of organizational finances, budgeting, and planning
Experience with marketing campaigns
Familiarity with the standards of the American Camp Association (ACA)
Working knowledge and/or ability to master office software applications including Office365, Salesforce and CampMinder
Ability to travel is essential; must be in full-time residence at camp during the summer and must be able to travel up to 20 weekends per year
Ability to navigate the outdoors, the physical landscape of camp (680 acres of hilly woodlands, 68 buildings, hot/cold weather), to sit and stand for extended periods, to climb, and lift 50 pounds