Michael Jeser Outstanding Jewish Professional Award


The Michael Jeser Outstanding Jewish Professional Award is sponsored by Jewish Federation of San Diego County in memory of former Federation President and CEO Michael Jeser, z'’l. Michael was a lifelong, passionate Jewish communal professional with a deep commitment to nurturing and mentoring talented young Jewish professionals. This award is in honor of his legacy and embrace of then San Diego's Jewish community. 


The purpose of this award is to recognize a dedicated professional at a Jewish communal organization in San Diego. The nominee must demonstrate outstanding professional work and a commitment to the field of Jewish professional leadership.


The award recipient will receive up to $5,000 to subsidize a professional development experience or program, including relevant travel experiences.  

Nominees should: 


  • Be committed to advancing their career as a Jewish Professional.

  • Be dedicated to the future vitality and vibrancy of the Jewish community and people.

  • Have knowledge of the issues facing the Jewish community.  

  • Approach issues facing the Jewish community in a creative and innovative ways. 

  • Be a team player and work collaboratively in the larger community. 

  • Seek continuing professional development in the field of Jewish communal service. 


Eligibility Criteria: 


  • The nominee must be a current employee of a San Diego-area Jewish organization, and must have worked in the San Diego Jewish community for at least 2 years but no more than 10.  

  • The nominee must be an entry to mid-level Jewish professional (e.g. not a member of an organization's executive/senior leadership team). 

  • The nominee may be any non-clergy from any Jewish communal service discipline (e.g. synagogue, education, etc.). 

  • The nominee must demonstrate interest in continuing a career in Jewish professional leadership. 


Responsibilities And Expectations of Award Winners: 


  • Attend Federation Community Event (Spring 2022) to receive the Michael Jeser Outstanding Jewish Professional Award. 

  • Develop and submit a proposed plan and estimated expenses within four months of receiving award (June 30, 2022) and present plan to JFSD for approval. 

  • Serve on the JFSD Selection Committee for this award the following year. 

  • Award money must be used within 24 months of the award being presented to recipient. 

  • Submit a written summary and presentation on the professional development experience and the ways it has enriched their work in the Jewish community.


For additional information please contact Candice Bucky at candiceb@jewishinsandiego.org.

Nominations are due January 21, 2022

Additional materials are due January 26, 2022

Michael Jeser z"l truly embodied the gold standard of Jewish communal professionals. Your gift recognizes up-and-coming Jewish communal professionals in San Diego, provides significant funding for professional development, and honors Michael's incredible legacy.