The Jewish Chronicle
David, 29, standing for top Board post
VTHERE WILL be at least one candidate under the age of 30 standing for office when the Board of Deputies elects its leaders for the next three years next month.
David Mendoza-Wolfson, 29, who joined the Board three years ago as a deputy for the Movement for Reform Judaism, is bidding to become one of its three vice-presidents.
There are some who believe that “if you’re a young deputy, you’re naïve and inexperienced”, he said. “I want to show this is not the case. I do have the ability to take on a leadership position.”
The former JFS student, who is a council member of Edgware and Hendon Reform Synagogue and a trustee of the London Jewish Forum, spent a year as an incident analyst for the Community Security Trust and is now a political assistant at Barnet Council.
His master’s thesis at Utrecht University was on bias against Israel at the UN and he worked in Geneva for the NGO UN Watch.
“When you talk to people in the community, most don’t know what the Board really does or think it is a talking shop for older Jews, which is a shame,” he said. “The Board is the legitimate representative voice of the community.”
He acknowledges that over the past six years, it has made some progress in being more inclusive. “It is good that the Board has three senior women [the president and two vice-presidents]. We need to keep going and trying to show that the Board is not for a certain group of people but for Jews of all backgrounds.”
Describing himself as “right of centre” politically, he believes his candidacy can help to counteract the “unfair” impression, particularly within the Board, that Jews of his generation are “extremely left-wing”.
But he notes that “the Board and the Tory Party are the only places where I am still viewed as young at 29”.
People think it is a talking shop for older Jews, which is a shame’