Civil Service

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Episode 30: Women in Israeli Politics: An Election Primer (Transcript)

Episode 30: Women in Israeli Politics: An Election Primer (Transcript)

Bella Abzug Speaking with Constituents, 1976, by Diana Mara Henry

Hurricane Bella: A Whirlwind of Intersectional Feminism

by Emily Axelrod

Abzug is an exemplar of what it means to be an intersectional feminist. She used her power and privilege to advocate for those she described as “on the outside of power.” Being a Jew herself, she was familiar with identity-based oppression, and because of that she knew she had to use her power to help fight for others.

Alma Hernandez

Born in Tucson, Arizona, Alma Hernandez is the youngest of three children.

Justine Wise Polier and Libby Schaaf

Governing with Valor

by Molly Weiner

As the first woman Justice of New York, Polier valiantly worked to improve the family court, fought for the rights of children and poor families, and tirelessly lobbied to ease quotas on Jewish refugees. Libby Schaaf, the 52-year-old mayor of Oakland, California, also fights for the inclusion of all people.

Emily Axelrod at L'Taken

Stirred and Spurred to Action

by Emily Axelrod

Judaism never seemed to offer anything that stoked my social justice fire. I didn’t hear many calls to action in services; partly because I wasn’t looking, and partly because services felt mundane to me.

Women Voting in 1936

Keeping the Faith in Our Democracy

by Rachael Dubinsky

This election is a referendum on the character of our society. It’s up to all of us to use our voices and our votes to create a more just and compassionate country.

Minnah Stein with Mayor Shelli Freeland Eddie

A Tale of Two Cities and Their Mayors

by Minnah Stein

Getting to intern with the mayor of Sarasota, Shelli Freeland Eddie, has been one of the best experiences of my life. I want to have a career that allows me to help people, and working with the mayor has enabled me to learn from the best. I’m so proud that our city has a strong woman as mayor who young girls in my community can look up to.

I’ve learned so much from all of the experiences my internship has offered me, but my favorite internship days are the days when after the City Council meetings are over, I trade my notepad and flats for a Girls Inc. t-shirt and sneakers. I leave the City of Sarasota and go to Dream Harbor, the mock city run by the girls at Girls Inc.

Sheila Finestone

The World Could Use More Sheila Finestones

by Minnah Stein

She was an under-the-radar super hero. She wasn’t famous, and they don’t teach you about her in school, but Sheila Finestone is someone worth celebrating. Even though her contributions to society weren't always noticed the way they should be, she never let the sun set on her sense of service. 

Bella Abzug's Campaign Poster, 1970

Hats Off to Congresswoman Abzug

by Kara Sherman

Like Congresswoman Bella Abzug, “I’ve always had a decent sense of outrage.” I can’t say that I was the first to call for Richard Nixon’s impeachment, or that I was the student body president of Hunter College who later received her law degree from Columbia University, but Abzug’s infinite passion for social and economic justice inspires me to attempt to follow in her footsteps.

Barbara Boxer

Barbara Boxer: Senator, Jewess, Inspiration

by Shira Small

Barbara Boxer: Fittingly a great name for a fighter, and an even better name for an extraordinary, accomplished Jewish woman. As one of seven women in the senate when she was elected in 1992, Boxer’s work broke barriers for all women—especially those aspiring to work in politics.

Golda Meir, March 1, 1973

Badass Bubbee

by Rachel Harris

She’s a confusing character in the feminist narrative. A pioneer in her field, yet so disappointingly anti-feminist. How do you label her? Should she be viewed as a hero, a villain, an accidental role model? The life and career of Goldie Myerson, or Golda Meir as she’s more commonly known, begs these questions.

Janet Yellen

In 2014 Janet Yellen became the first female chair of the Federal Reserve, responsible for decisions that shape the US economy on every level.

Marcia Marker Feld

The first woman to earn a PhD in urban planning from Harvard University, Marcia Marker Feld dedicated her career to teaching the next generation of urban planners to base their work on the needs and desires of a community instead of imposing their own visions on neighborhoods.

Dalia Itzik

During her term as the first female Speaker of the Knesset, Dalia Itzik was called upon to take on another first when she became the first female Interim President of Israel in 2007.

Ruth Calderon

As a Talmud scholar and a member of the progressive Israeli political party Yesh Atid, Ruth Calderon has sought to break down the traditional divide in Israeli society between right-wing Orthodoxy and secular liberalism.

Helena Kagan

Dr. Helena Kagan improved the lives of generations of Jewish, Muslim, and Christian children in Jerusalem.

Rachel Kagan (Cohen)

One of two women to sign the Israeli Declaration of Independence (the other being Golda Meir), Rachel Kagan shaped women’s rights in the new state.

Monica Lewinsky

After news of her affair with President Clinton went viral, Monica Lewinsky survived a national scandal to become an anti-bullying crusader.

Beba Idelson

A staunch Zionist and one of the first Knesset members, Beba Trachtenberg Idelson was a champion of religious freedom and women’s rights in the new State of Israel.
First Lady Michelle Obama with Students

Nutritious School Lunches for All

by Sarah Biskowitz

Sometimes when I babysit, kids don’t like the meals I prepare for them. They scrunch their noses and whine “ewww!” at the nutritious food on their plates; but then I explain to them how carrots make their eyesight sharper, yogurt makes their bones stronger, and whole-grain pasta gives them the energy to play. Wanting to be strong and healthy, the kids listen and eat up.

Senator Jeff Klein

Dear Jeff Klein

by Abigail Fisher

With the recent election of a president who has a deleterious agenda, I have grown to depend on my representation more and more. Votes against reckless healthcare plans and sweeping immigration legislation are not merely important, but vital. Now more than ever, our district deserves outspoken representatives who vote their conscience, and accurately represent the needs of their constituents. 

Congressman Jamie Raskin

Gerrymandering Isn't an Issue for Maryland Alone

by Isabel Kirsch

As a committed Democrat, it might seem counterproductive for me to oppose something that makes this disproportionately Democratic congressional representation possible. However, I see gerrymandering in Maryland as part of a much larger national problem, and I urge you to use your platform as a federal representative to address it. 

Topics: Civil Service
Philadelphia Mayor James Kenney

Please, Sir, May We Have Some More?

by Diana Myers

I have attended city public schools all my life, and know firsthand the various difficulties Philadelphia students have faced over the years, especially those as a result of extensive budget cuts. Even though I’m very fortunate to go to a high-performing and well-funded school, I’m aware that that’s not the case for every school in the city. 

Congressman Lee Zeldin

Through a Jewish Lens: An Argument for Safe, Legal Abortion

by Madisen Siegel

My name is Madisen Siegel. I am an 18-year- old, soon-to-be-registered voter in the first district of New York. As one of your constituents, and a young adult who just moved to New York–fresh from the malls and suburbia of northern New Jersey–I am concerned about your stance on healthcare, and I am asking you to re-think your position, especially when it comes to abortion. 

Janet Jagan

As president of Guyana for two years, Janet Rosenberg Jagan was the first American-born woman to serve as president of any country. Jagan was a student at the Cook County Nursing School in Chicago when she met Cheddi Jagan, a dentistry student.
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