From June 9 to June 13, I had the great privilege of participating for the third time in the annual ROI Summit, a gathering of 150 young Jewish innovators from around the world. The ROI Summit is the entry point into the ROI community, an ongoing resource for young Jewish innovators through regular gatherings, professional development opportunities and microgrants. The ROI Community includes nearly 1,000 members in 56 countries, and has already distributed over $400,000 in grants to its members.
Below is an excerpt of my diary from my week in Jerusalem with ROI.
DAY 1, SUNDAY
I hope I’m not the oldest person here. As one of 30 returning members, invited to help create bridges between this new group and the existing network, I’ve been grandfathered in, even though I think I’ve crossed the age cutoff. I hope I don’t seem like a grandfather to them!
Opening ceremonies. Justin Korda, director of the ROI Community, encourages us to find people to learn from who are different from us, and to make as many friends as we can. We’re here to build a strong, vibrant network for the Jewish people and for Israel.
After keynote Nancy Lublin (Do Something), they pass out small shots of peach schnapps to everyone for l’chaim. I’ve never seen peach schnapps being passed to hundreds of people! Against my better judgment, I drink it. Then totally stumble through an icebreaker in which I have to throw a pretend ball from person to person in a small circle of strangers.
Read the rest of my article in the Washington Jewish Week!