December 1, 2023

On August 14, the Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs organized a special Club Leader Training Session to shine a spotlight on the activities of Florida Region of FJMC. Representatives of several dozen Jewish Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods from across Florida as well as the United States and Canada were on the call.

President Blake Lenett

Florida Region President Blake Lenett began the meeting with a year-to-date report on Regional activities, starting with a major redesign of into an active news magazine with timely reporting on activities of our affiliated Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods. The Region created a series of new statewide initiatives like Choose Shabbat and an online repository of fresh club training materials on hot topics like succession planning, member mobilization, branding, effective use of social media, how to attract and retain younger members, etc. Regional leaders increased club visitations with a goal of direct, face to face interaction with every affiliated Florida Region FJMC Men’s Club and Brotherhood over the next year. The Region also facilitated / promoted several multi-club events including a golf outing, a deep sea fishing trip and a Miami Marlins baseball games, and scheduled a series of quarterly, regional Director’s meetings and club training programs in different parts of the state.

The next Regional Directors meeting will take place Sunday August 28th at 11:00am at Congregation Ohev Shalom in Maitland, Florida. The agenda will include discussion of a proposed amendment to the Florida Region FJMC bylaws; all affiliated Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods in the state are encouraged to participate in this important meeting.

Dive into our Football Pool

Current Florida Region activities include a Men’s Club Football Pool Fundraiser, where one ticket offers the chance to win high or low score every week of the 18 week long 2022 / 2023 NFL football season. The best part is there is no cost to your Men’s Club or Brotherhood to participate, and your club earns $5 for every ticket sold. For more information contact Beth Am Men’s Club President and Football Pool chair Larry Schwartz at

Upcoming activities include a Men’s Club Weekend Ruach Retreat October 21-23 in Palm Beach Gardens (Email for more information), as well as Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panther’s Hockey games on December 15 and 21, respectively.

Looking ahead to 2023, Florida Region FJMC encourages every Men’s Club and Brotherhood in the state to send at least two delegates to FJMC Convention 2023 – June 29 to July 2, 2023 – especially your current and incoming President and Executive Vice President (EVP). The Region approved subsidies of up to $500 per person for first time attendees and $300 per person for repeat attendees, to help to cover the bulk of the cost of sending YOUR affiliated Florida Men’s Club and Brotherhood members to FJMC Convention. Additional funding may be available through your Rabbi’s discretionary fund. Cost should not be an impediment to attending.

The meeting continued with an invaluable club training session from Florida Region Vice President Elliott Davis highlighting important strategies for club membership recruitment and retention. Topics covered included setting and implementing objectives and goals to develop your membership, what groups to target for membership, publicity and promotion, phone calls and personal contact. As one of our Florida Region FJMC Consultants, Elliott Davis is available to facilitate a training program at your Men’s Club or Brotherhood; email for more information.

Benny Sommerfeld

FJMC Vice President of Training and Leadership Development Benny Sommerfeld then separated call participants into virtual break-out rooms for group discussion of three important questions:

(1) What qualities does it take to lead an organization like Men’s Club?

Answers included compassion, the ability to inspire others, to be a good listener, to communicate with everybody and to see the big picture. A leader should have a clear vision and be able to inspire others to reach consensus. Prior preparation prevents poor performance.

(2) How do you motivate new members to get involved?

Sometimes it’s as simple as asking people to participate. Organize programs that appeal to different people, such as attending live sporting events, organizing a brewery tour or starting a pickle-ball league. Other strategies include offering a free year of Men’s Club membership to all new synagogue members.

(3) What are the reasons people become involved with Men’s Club?

The top answer was being made to feel welcome; being greeted on Shabbat, a hand shake, a smile.  Invite people who are not currently men’s club members to take part in Men’s Club Shabbat with an ark opening or other role. Organize programs that get men together and enjoy each other’s company.

This FJMC training program was brought to you by the by Florida Region of the FJMC. We serve the needs of Jewish Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods throughout the State of Florida from the Panhandle to Miami. Our mission is to involve Jewish Men in Jewish Life.

If you are not yet affiliated with the Federation, then today is the day to join us. Get to know more about the Florida Region of FJMC and our growing statewide network of dynamic Jewish Men’s Clubs and Brotherhoods on our website and please visit and LIKE our Facebook Group at  

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