FEBRUARY 2, 2021
San Antonio, Texas – After a unanimous vote in January, the board of directors has hired Nehemia “Nammie” Ichilov, Ed.S. to lead the Jewish Federation of San Antonio as Chief Executive Officer. Having grown up in Cardiff, Wales; Nammie is the grandson of Holocaust survivors. He has spent three decades educating children and adults about humanity’s collective history through Holocaust education. He likes to share that knowledge is knowing the information, but wisdom is knowing what to do with the knowledge.
With extensive non-profit education experience, Nammie was originally hired in March 2020 to direct the Federation’s Holocaust Memorial Museum, an education center serving 19,000 visitors yearly. He accepted the Federation’s Interim CEO role during the summer, just as repercussions from the COVID-19 pandemic were impacting the community. Since that time, he has led the Federation to notable success amidst leadership transition, pandemic challenges, and economic uncertainty.
“In a short amount of time, with a global pandemic raging, Nammie has successfully taken the leadership reins working to build relationships with staff, Federation leadership, and the community at large to craft a vision for Federations’ future,” said Michael Swanson, Chair of the Jewish Federation of San Antonio.
Through Nammie’s leadership, the Federation continues to allocate almost half a million dollars in funding from the 2020 Community Crisis Campaign to support local Jewish agencies and synagogues during the pandemic. The Holocaust Memorial Museum transitioned to become an online institution with virtual tours, presentations, and exhibits reaching over 250,000 people in January for programs like Learn & Remember, Teacher Workshops, and Texas Holocaust Remembrance Week. Nammie also helped to move the biennial For Hope For Humanity benefit online, successfully netting $200,000 to support two years of operation for the museum.
“I am both excited and honored to lead the Jewish Federation into its next chapter as the guiding agency for Jewish life in San Antonio,” Nammie shared. “We are committed to bringing our community together, listening to our current and future needs, and then planning and securing the resources to realize these aspirations.”
While the last six months have caused many community challenges, under Nammie’s guidance, the Federation team successfully broke the goal for the 2020 Annual Campaign, raising over $1.4 million during a tumultuous year and outperforming 2019 efforts.
“During his role as interim CEO, Nammie has already shown enthusiasm and dedication in growing San Antonio as an exceptional Jewish community,” said Joe Patrick, Co-Chair, Crisis Grant Suballocation Committee. “This past year has been an extraordinary one and Nammie has risen to the occasion, successfully leading the Federation during the pandemic. He has led with purpose and acted clearly, thoughtfully, and compassionately in each decision he has executed.”
“Nammie is a natural born leader—once you meet him you love him,” said Jordana Pazin, PhD, 2020 Campaign Chair, Member of the Board. “He leads by example, through collaboration, which creates real connections and partnerships.”
“Nammie is passionate about Holocaust education and about Jewish life here in our San Antonio community and beyond,” said Linda Solis, Ph.D., Chair, Holocaust Memorial Museum Commission. “He has proven himself to be a bridge-builder, forging relationships throughout San Antonio that will be mutually beneficial.”
ABOUT THE JEWISH FEDERATION OF SAN ANTONIO
Engaging. Planning. Sustaining.
The mission of the Jewish Federation of San Antonio is to strengthen Jewish communities here, everywhere, always.
Founded in 1922, the Jewish Federation of San Antonio is dedicated to building a strong Jewish community in San Antonio and worldwide through its Annual Campaign and by providing quality opportunities for Jewish individuals and families. Federation is the people who care enough to want to perfect an imperfect world. Federation is the passion of commitment, where tzedakah and a sense of social justice can make a difference in someone’s life.
In partnership with other Jewish institutions, the Jewish Federation of San Antonio promotes the advancement of Jewish learning and seeks to perpetuate the values, practices, and traditions that enrich Jewish Life. We support safety net services provided by Jewish Family Service, several adult and youth programs of the Barshop Jewish Community Center, as well as programs offered to our students through the Shmuel Bass Torah Academy of San Antonio and Hillel of San Antonio.