JCC San Francisco names new CEO

The day after her daughter was born, a friend with a good sense of humor burst into Marci Glazer’s hospital room brandishing a preschool application for the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco.

Marci Glazer

Thus began Glazer’s relationship with the JCCSF. Over the next decade, she would send her daughter to preschool there, utilize the facility’s swim and recreation classes, attend events with her family and eventually serve on the board.

And now, the former technology executive is the JCCSF’s new CEO. The center’s board of directors made the announcement Jan. 30.

“It is really a privilege to be able to step into this seat and this position with the organization,” said Glazer, who has served as the JCCSF’s interim executive director since August. “I think we’re just at the beginning of imagining how we can bring Jewish teachings and Jewish wisdoms into the daily life of the people who walk through our doors.”

Glazer began her career in the nonprofit sector, working on environmental policy for the Center for Marine Conservation (now the Ocean Conservancy). Her private-sector career has included roles at media and software startups, and she is an alumna of the Wexner Heritage Program for Jewish leaders.

“I think my tech career was about imagining what’s not there and creating it, whether it was creating online strategy for a print publication or imagining a new business,” Glazer said. “It’s really looking up above the clouds and dreaming and figuring out how to get from Step A to Step B.”

Barry Finestone, the previous JCCSF executive director, left the job in August to become executive director of the Bay Area–based Lisa and John Pritzker Family Fund. He had been at the JCCSF for four years after a 20-year career leading Jewish organizations. Glazer was hired after an extensive national search, according to Warren Browner, JCCSF board chair.

“Marci has already accelerated the JCCSF’s work on a number of key initiatives,” Browner said. “This is an exciting time for the JCCSF, as we help to discover what it means to be Jewish and to ‘do Jewish’ in the 21st century.”

Glazer said it’s important that the JCCSF continue to communicate its value to the community. But with the organization on firm financial footing, she added, there is an opportunity to think creatively about the future.

“Now we have the opportunity to dream,” she said. — drew himmelstein

Drew Himmelstein
Drew Himmelstein

Drew Himmelstein is a former J. reporter who writes about education, families and Jewish life. She lives with her husband and two sons.