Rising Jewish community leader returns to Hillel to lead Jewish student engagement efforts on more than 850 campuses worldwide
WASHINGTON – Hillel International today announced that Rachel Gildiner, a Jewish communal leader and expert in the field of relational engagement, has been appointed to the role of Chief Engagement Officer. This key, new position will be part of the organization’s senior leadership team with a mandate to craft and support new strategies to build on Hillel’s leadership in engaging and inspiring more than 140,000 Jewish students on college campuses around the world each year. Gildiner will oversee and advance the diverse mix of signature student engagement programs Hillel International offers, including those related to student leadership development, Israel engagement, social impact, and other aspects of Jewish life.
As the former executive director of GatherDC and current CEO of Gather, Inc., Gildiner has implemented innovative ways to engage Jewish young professionals in their 20s and 30s, building invaluable skills which she will carry into her new role supporting vibrant programming for Jewish students. Prior to joining Gather, Gildiner spent seven years at Hillel International developing and supporting new student engagement, innovation, and campus entrepreneurship programs. Gildiner will officially begin her new full-time role with Hillel International on June 1.
“Meaningful relationships and Jewish experiences are central to Hillel, and Hillel is central to the Jewish student experience,” said Rachel Gildiner, incoming Chief Engagement Officer at Hillel International. “This unique opportunity to turn ideas into action and explore new ways for Jewish students to develop their identity is an honor. Returning to Hillel in this new capacity, a place where I spent some of the most formative years of my career, is thrilling and meaningful. I’m excited to get to work and learn from the heart of our organization: our campus professionals and the students we exist to serve.”
“This homecoming for Rachel is a tremendous win for the Hillel movement,” said Adam Lehman, President and CEO of Hillel International. “Having piloted and scaled Hillel’s peer-engagement and education initiatives, then overseen efforts engaging Jewish young professionals at Gather, Rachel is one of the foremost experts on what it takes to not only engage young Jews, but inspire them to lead.”
The Hillel movement has long led the way in developing new approaches to Jewish engagement that are then scaled up to impact the broader Jewish world. As Chief Engagement Officer, Gildiner will be tasked with envisioning the future of Hillel and turning that vision into reality through exciting Jewish life programming, robust Israel engagement, and enhanced opportunities for student leadership.