On September 6, Dr. Bruce Powell, dean of American Jewish University’s (AJU) School for Jewish Education and Leadership (SJEL), was honored as the first recipient of the Jewish Community Foundation of Los Angeles’ Marvin I. Schotland Leadership Award.
The prestigious award, which is dedicated to the Foundation’s former President and Chief Executive Officer - Marvin I. Schotland - recognizes a Jewish nonprofit professional in Los Angeles who exemplifies Schotland’s bold and visionary leadership. The recipient is also awarded a $50,000 donor advised fund (DAF) to support charitable causes they find most meaningful.
Dr. Powell’s selection for this award celebrates his exceptional contributions to the Jewish community over his remarkable half-century-long career as an author, Jewish educator, and consultant. His influence extends to advising over 80 schools nationwide and participating in the establishment of 23 Jewish day schools throughout North America and Israel. Dr. Powell also founded and served as the Head of School for three prominent Los Angeles-area Jewish high schools – Yeshiva University of Los Angeles (YULA) High School, Milken Community High School and deToledo High School.
“Dr. Bruce Powell’s work in education has transformed the lives of thousands of students and their families, and he's managed to do it all with warmth and humility,” said Rabbi Aaron Lerner, president and CEO of the Jewish Community Foundation. “He is richly deserving of this accolade, and we are proud to recognize Bruce as the inaugural Marvin I. Schotland Leadership Award recipient.”
During the award ceremony, Dr. Powell expressed his gratitude of the recognition, saying, “the Torah teaches us, ‘tzedek tzedek tirdof,’ justice, justice you shall pursue. The Preamble to our American Constitution implores us to ‘establish justice, ensure domestic tranquility, and promote the general welfare. [My wife,] Debby and I cannot imagine a better way to fulfill both of these Torah and American ideals than through our DAF at The Foundation that has now been strengthened by this incredible gift. Doing this in the name of Marvin Schotland is an added bonus and personal sense of joy.”
AJU is pleased to announce that Dr. Powell, who assumed the role of interim dean of AJU’s School for Jewish Education and Leadership in March, will continue the valuable work that earned him the Marvin I. Schotland award as official Dean of the School for Jewish Education and Leadership.
To learn more about The School for Jewish Education and Leadership, visit www.aju.edu/school-jewish-education-and-leadership.
About AJU: American Jewish University (AJU) is a thriving center of resources and talent that advances the Jewish journeys of individuals, organizations, and our community through excellence in scholarship, teaching, engaged conversation, and outreach. AJU equips students, faculty, campers, and learners of all ages with the tools to create the ideas, build the structures, and develop the programs to advance Jewish wisdom and elevate our world. For more information, visit www.aju.edu.
Pictured with Powell and Schotland are (from left): Dr. Jeffrey Herbst, president of American Jewish University; Rabbi Aaron Lerner, Foundation president and chief executive officer; and Evan Schlessinger, Foundation board chair.
Michelle Starkman, M.A., MBA
Vice President, Communications