Signature Programs

This biennial program brings together emerging volunteer leaders from various member synagogues and organizations with a goal of developing future leaders.  It provides access to established leaders who present on a range of topics and it creates a network of peers who can exchange ideas about common issues.  The current cohort include 20 participants who began their training in October 2019.  These emerging volunteer leaders meet monthly to learn about a variety of leadership topics including: “Who are today’s Jews in Westchester,” ”Care and nurturing of volunteers,” “Leadership resources you didn’t know you had” and more. The Institute was recently named in memory and of the 3rd president of the Westchester Jewish Council, the Hon. Samuel G. Fredman.  Welcome to the Class of 2019/2020.

How do we thank our community volunteers?

Every spring, the Westchester Jewish Council honors deserving member organizations and their leaders with the Julian Y. Bernstein Distinguished Service Award (DSA). Julian Y. Bernstein was a former Westchester Jewish Council board member, who was a visionary communal leader. Julian believed that doing tzedakah was just as important as giving tzedakah. In tribute to his passion and devotion to the Jewish community, we honor those who follow in his footsteps. Member organizations are invited to nominate an honoree from within their organization whose dedication and leadership has enriched our Westchester community.

This year’s 26th Annual Julian Y. Bernstein Distinguished Service Awards Ceremony will take place virtually on March 16, 2021 from 7:30pm to 9:00pm.

To register and/or make a donation in honor of one of this year’s honorees, please click HERE.


Click here to view photos from the 2019 Awards ceremony.

Click here for the 2019 DSA honorees.



Click here to view the list of 2018 honorees.
Click here to view photos

For a history of past Julian Y. Bernstein Award Recipients, please click here.

The Biennial Night of Jewish Learning and Celebration took place on  Saturday evening, November 23, 2019, at Beth El Synagogue Centerpresented by the Westchester Board of Rabbis and Westchester Jewish CouncilWith 31 Rabbis and hundreds of community members in attendance, the night was a wonderful way for the community to connect through learning and celebrating. Thank you to the Westchester Board of Rabbis for presenting this biennial program along with the Council. Special thanks to Beth El Synagogue Center for hosting and to Rabbi Ethan Tucker of Council member Hadar for presenting the community lecture to conclude the evening.  The next Night Of Learning will take place in the fall of 2021.

The biennial Night of Music and Joy took place virtually on Saturday, November 21, 2020 and was attended by over 600 people.  Presented by the Westchester Jewish Council and the talented Cantors of Kol Hazzanim – the Cantors of Westchester, the theme of the evening’s music was “Together at Home”.  The night began with a lovely Havdalah service and then transitioned into the concert which showcased a beautiful mix of Broadway tunes, spiritual, and traditional music.

Click here to view photos from the 2016 event.

Click here to view 2014 event photos
Click here to view 2012 event photos

The Westchester Jewish Council celebrates Jewish History & Heritage Month at an annual event hosted by the Westchester County Board of Legislators.

In 2019, we honored Anti Defamation League – Evan Bernstein, NY/NJ Regional Director and John B. Harris, National Executive Committee Member and J-Teen Leadership 

The Council is proud to co-sponsor the annual County-Wide Holocaust Commemoration, along with the Holocaust and Human Rights Education Center. The commemoration took place virtually on Tuesday, April 21st. We had an overwhelming response to this event with over 418 virtual attendees.  This year’s guest speaker was Peter Somogyi, a Holocaust survivor.

Here is a link to view the ceremony –

The Council’s Annual Gala was held on February 1, 2020.  This event brings together the community for fun, food and entertainment while raising necessary funds for the ongoing work of the Council including coordinating our community wide effort to fight hate, build bridges and secure Jewish Westchester.

To view the entire Gala Journal 2020, click WJC 44th Anniversary Journal Final Lo-Res

To listen to the honorees speeches, click here.