CJE recently welcomed Stephanie Smerling as Vice President of Resource Development. She is responsible for managing both the Development and Grants Departments that raise critical funds that help support many of CJE’s special programs and services, as well as events such as Celebrate CJE, our annual gala.
Stephanie has significant experience in the fundraising arena, serving in leadership positions over the past 30 years at several local, regional and national nonprofit organizations. She is actually “coming home” to CJE, since she was the first person to hold the position of Development Director when CJE SeniorLife was known as the Council for Jewish Elderly back in the 1990’s.
Most recently, Stephanie partnered with Nativ College and United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, to launch Yozma Nativ, a 9-month gap year program in Israel for young adults aged 18-21 with cognitive and social challenges. Prior to 2013, Stephanie was the Director of Institutional Advancement for Rochelle Zell Jewish High School where she managed the annual fund and developed an endowment campaign. In addition, Stephanie held fundraising leadership positions at many other organizations, including the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Cancer Wellness Center and Jewish Theological Seminary.
Stephanie considers this is an incredible opportunity for her to bring her extensive knowledge back to CJE to support CJE’s next phase of growth. She said she “knows firsthand how CJE positively impacts the lives of older adults and their families throughout metropolitan Chicago. We have an unparalleled mission and it is an honor to share our success stories with the Jewish and larger community.”
A Deerfield resident, Stephanie earned her BA in Sociology from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and a Master of Public Health from the University of Illinois at Chicago.