10) George Rosenfeld, 20
You might know him as the face of Chai Cancer Care, but George’s true impact is as a community leader driving outward-facing social responsibility. Since the age of 12, George has pioneered numerous social responsibility projects, managing fundraising efforts totalling more than £100,000.
In 2017, George participated in the Chief Rabbi’s Ben Azzai Programme, a flagship initiative that educates future Jewish communal leaders about the importance of social responsibility as a paramount Jewish value.
George visited Ghana, learning about organisations helping to improve the lives of rural communities in the northern part of the country. Inspired, the 20-year-old subsequently co-founded Social Responsibility Week in 2019, which reached 2,000 people across 40 institutions and many more on social media.
George is studying at Cambridge University, where he established May Week Alternative, a charitable initiative that aims to put giving at the heart of the end-of-year celebrations. This year, the charity raised more than £35,000 for a malaria charity. An “exceptional leader”, George even has a Ted Talk on fundraising and his initiatives have received recognition both at 10 Downing Street and the United Nations.
9) Rachel Vogler, 23
An activist and campaigner for women’s voices in the Jewish community, Rachel is an “exceptional educator” whose passion for feminism and equality permeates her work.
The 23-year-old studied at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama where, as Student Union Women’s Officer in 2018, she implemented an award-winning sexual violence prevention campaign, ‘Central Says Enough’, and made sanitary items free on campus. Rachel currently works for Jewish Women’s Aid, where she leads an educational programme ‘Safer Dating’ that reaches out to 16 to 25-year-olds to explore issues of gender, sexual harassment and consent.
Rachel is also the founder and director of Houselights, shining a light on sexual harassment and power abuse in the entertainment industry. She was awarded a £5,000 grant from the Central Start-Up and Enterprise Fund to consolidate the initiative, and even presented her work at a conference in Wisconsin. Rachel plans to pursue a PhD, exploring theories of power abuse in the entertainment industry and researching meaningful interventions to avert violence against women.
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8) Lauren Keiles, 23
As community outreach officer at the Board of Deputies, Lauren “lives and breathes community engagement”. Currently the youngest professional staff member at the Board, the 23-year-old is already excelling in her role developing support for community organisations, mobilising grassroots community activism and implementing outreach projects.
Notably, in light of the Covid-19 pandemic, Lauren has recently initiated a good neighbour’s scheme to support those self-isolating by disseminating online ‘Can I Help You’ cards. Since graduating, Lauren has also been selected as the UK delegate on the European Jewish Congress and ADL Fellowship in the USA to learn about their work fighting the defamation of the Jewish people.
She is also a founding member of the newest East London Moishe House, where she hosts weekly events to help revive the growing East London Jewish Community. Lauren has won leadership awards from the UJS, WUJS and the UJIA for her outstanding leadership, as well as being recognised by the Jewish News as a Faith Leader for the 21st Century.
7) Hannah Kaufman, 22
Hannah is one of the best-connected young professionals operating in the British political scene.
Currently working at a leading political consultancy firm, the 22-year-old holds connections across the very highest levels of Whitehall and government and, as an Ambassador for 50:50 Parliament, promotes gender equality in politics.
As an executive board member of the Patchwork Foundation, which seeks to increase minority representation in politics, Hannah was selected by the US State Department for the International Visitors Leadership Program, a prestigious initiative for current and emerging international leaders whose alumni include Prime Minister’s Theresa May, Gordon Brown and Tony Blair.
Through this role, she has chaired masterclass sessions with the head of the Civil Service and David Cameron. Additionally, as an executive board member of the charity, Naz Legacy Foundation, Hannah is project managing three interfaith iftars for young people in 2020, which will be hosted by senior politicians, high profile ambassadors and permanent secretaries. She is also the youth director at Golders Green United Synagogue and was commended as one of Jewish News’ 21 faith leaders for the 21st century.
6) Rebecca Filer, 24
As national organiser at the Jewish Labour Movement (JLM), Rebecca has overseen a massive growth of its membership during a highly turbulent period. The 24-year-old has also played a leading role in co-ordinating JLM’s submission to the Equality and Human Rights Commission investigation into Labour, and oversaw JLM’s work during the general election, balancing support for Jewish and allied Labour candidates with concerns around Jeremy Corbyn.
Rebecca is also the campaigns officer for London Young Labour, and previously worked in Parliament for Stella Creasy MP. While a student at Bristol University, Rebecca received a Union of Jewish Students (UJS) Dedication to Liberation Activism Award for her instrumental work with UJS’ Liberation Conference, which provided a space for LGBT+, disabled and female students. She also founded the first JFS Feminist Society and continues progressing Orthodox Jewish women’s spaces at her synagogue and through active involvement in the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance. Rebecca has built on her longstanding involvement in political and communal leadership, and will undoubtedly continue speaking truth to power in years to come.
5) Sally Patterson, 24
Praised as “vocal, unapologetic and wearing her Jewish and feminist values on her sleeve”, Sally has an extraordinary record of challenging interfaith barriers while combatting antisemitism in the student movement.
As the Jewish representative on the National Union of Students (NUS) NEC, Sally has tenaciously defended Jewish students, resulting in the successful removal of an NEC member for his antisemitic comments.
At NUS’ 2019 national conference, her motion calling for NUS to roll out antisemitism training passed unanimously. Sally is also a former Equality Sabbatical Officer at Bristol Student Union, where she organised antisemitism training for all staff and initiated the first Interfaith Week at the university.
The 24-year-old also established the first Jewish-Muslim female student national conference, securing £5,000 of funding from the Board of Deputies and the World Jewish Congress. Sally has won multiple Union of Jewish Student Awards and the Bristol University Diversity Award, with her keen interest in politics extending to her running City Hall’s London Voter Registration week. Now completing her masters in gender studies at Cambridge University, Sally intends to pursue a career in journalism.
4) Esther Offenberg, 22
Esther is president of the Union of Jewish Students (UJS), having won a tough election against three impressive female candidates in 2018. “Smart, savvy and widely respected”, the 22-year-old represents and empowers Britain’s 8,500 Jewish students. Already widely praised for her successful efforts in reviving and supporting Jewish societies, Esther is working hard to get UJS and British Jewish students more involved in the international Jewish student scene, bridging a longstanding divide.
To that end, Esther is also vice president of the World Union of Jewish Students (WUJS), with responsibility for bringing the organisation back on track and is currently heading the hiring committee for a new WUJS executive director – the first for many years. As an Israeli, engagement with the country is close to her heart, and Esther is planning a conference to discuss and educate about social, political, cultural and religious issues in Israel and the Middle East. A real people-person who connects superbly with those around her, Esther’s initiatives are already proving highly successful.
3) Joe Woolf, 23
There are mazkirim (secretaries)… and then there’s communal macher (doer) Joe Woolf. Joe took the role of FZY mazkir to the next level, initiating a dozen successful programmes between 2017 and 2019 and growing the membership by more than 150 percent.
Following a spate of antisemitic and anti-Zionist graffiti at Berlin’s East Side Gallery, Joe oversaw a £6,000 funding effort to commission the original artist, Günther Schaefer, to repaint his Vaterland mural, which depicts a Star of David over the German flag.
The ‘Paint over Prejudice’ initiative engaged more than 300 young people in fundraising efforts, and Joe subsequently oversaw a trip for 15 17-year-olds to the site. He also launched ‘UKonnect’, a fundraising campaign to rebuild a synagogue in the Ukraine. Joe is also a trustee of the Jewish Youth Fund, which allocates funding for initiatives to engage Jewish youth across the full spectrum of the community, and volunteers with marketing advice at The Foundation for Jewish Heritage.
Joe is co-chair of the Ohel Sarah Youth committee, helping the Israeli learning difficulties charity with fundraising and engagements events with young British Jews. He sits on the ZF committee and is an Area Election Council representative to the Confederations, ensuring work being done in Israel is heard in the UK. He is also launching his own brand of vegan sweets, ‘Tasty Mates’, later this year!
2) Daniel Kosky, 22
As campaigns organiser of UJS, Daniel is responsible for developing and setting its political strategy, as well as building and strengthening relationships with Jewish communal and student movement organisations. All this is done to facilitate Jewish students to engage in social and political activism on their campuses. Crucially, the 22-year-old is also “quietly but capably” tackling the resurgence of antisemitism on campuses across the country.
He provides antisemitism training to student unions and university staff nationwide and fights for the right of Jewish societies to exist. A passionate defender of Israel, Daniel was also recently one of the leading figures in organising the Spring into Israel campaign, which aimed to have as many Israel-related events as possible on campus throughout March.
Daniel’s passion for student activism arose while studying at Nottingham University, where he became campaigns officer of the JSoc and he represented his student union at NUS Conference as a delegate. Now regularly in contact with government ministers and representing Jewish students on numerous platforms to ensure their voices are heard, Daniel intends to utilise his remarkable progress and impressive connections for a career in politics.
1) Hannah Rose, 23
Few former UJS presidents rival the substantial impact of Hannah’s tenure throughout 2018/19. Elected on the cusp of UJS’ centenary year amid the Labour antisemitism crisis, Hannah led numerous “successful and transformative” campaigns for the Jewish student community. Notably, the 23-year-old used her platform to speak out against Labour antisemitism at the United Nations Human Rights Council, AJC Global Forum and the European Commission to international acclaim. She also took the bold step of publicly resigning her Labour Party membership, securing significant news coverage. Internally, Hannah successfully transformed UJS into a more accessible union by advocating for gender balance, and ensuring female students were mentored and supported. She also diversified the leadership and training available to Jewish societies, ensuring Scottish and London students received bespoke training in light of their oft-inability to attend UJS Summit.
Hannah has thereby unquestionably inspired a generation of activists, particularly young women, to speak up and be heard. Additionally, under her leadership, UJS alongside the Holocaust Educational Trust took the first cohort of student leaders to Auschwitz, in what is now a three-year government funded project. As UJS president, her legacy was also secured through mental health initiatives, most notably partnering with Jami to train and support students in mental health awareness, resulting in the creation of Jewish mental health ambassadors on campuses nationwide. Finally, she oversaw the beginning of UJS 100, launched to celebrate a century of leading, defending and enriching Jewish students’ life on campus. After her presidency, Hannah began her master’s at King’s College London in Counter-Terrorism and Security Studies, and worked for Ian Austin MP as his parliamentary assistant from September 2019. Undoubtedly a commanding figure in lay and Jewish communal life, Hannah now intends to further her interest in counterterrorism and extremism policy, specialising in European right-wing terrorism.