“The Jewish establishment” evokes images of a small group of insiders with some combination of power, affluence, and influence. This isn’t necessarily wrong, but the power and purpose of that establishment has shifted significantly since its height in the middle of the 20th century, and it also exists in relationship to its critics.

Eric Fingerhut has been a member of many “establishments.” He was a congressman for Ohio 19th district, CEO of Hillel International, and is now the CEO of the Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA). In conversation with Yehuda Kurtzer, he shares his perspectives on the power and limits of representing North American Jewish communities, particularly during times of political crisis; the systems of democracy within his own organization; and where he sees hope for the Jewish future in both North America and Israel.

Yehuda Kurtzer’s article “The Establishment Has No Clothes