A Message From Our CEO 3.1.24

Dear Friends,
I am writing to you today with an uplifting update this Shabbat amidst the challenges we've faced over recent months.
This past Tuesday evening, a significant moment unfolded for our community at the Irvine City Council meeting. An agenda item, deeply divisive and rooted in the ongoing Israel-Hamas conflict, was poised for consideration. This proposal emerged against a backdrop of increased antisemitic rhetoric and actions that have touched public meetings, school campuses, and other community spaces, even reaching the council's chambers.
In the face of this challenge, our local Jewish community came together to advocate for unity over division. The Federation’s very own Rose Project, which is dedicated to promoting the values, interests, and security of Jews in Orange County, played an instrumental role in mobilizing our response. As president and CEO of the Jewish Federation of Orange County, I had the privilege of representing our collective voice before the council. Watch my remarks below.

View Video Here

Thanks to the concerted efforts of our community and the principled stance of three members of the Irvine City Council, we were able to prevent the passage of this harmful agenda item. However, our work is far from over. The proposed item and the discourse surrounding it highlight the crucial necessity of educating and engaging the wider community through events like our recent Countering Hate summit to foster a deeper understanding of how pervasive antisemitism is in our society, including its perpetuation through educational and civic institutions.
In light of this, it is important to note that a similar proposal is slated for review by the Santa Ana City Council this coming Tuesday evening. This presents another critical opportunity for us to stand together and demonstrate the strength and resilience of our community.
As we move forward, let us remember the power we have as a unified community as we continue our work in creating a community free of Jew-hatred and bigotry of all kinds. Together, we make a difference.
May we go from strength to strength.
Shabbat Shalom,
Erik Ludwig


Erik Ludwig, PhD
President & CEO