Jewish Influencers

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“The Top 10 Jewish  Influencers in Social Media” by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald

The National Jewish Outreach Program (NJOP) recognizes winners of its first-ever “Jewish Treats: Jewish Influencer Awards,” announcing the recipients as part of Social Media Week.

The winners were selected by NJOP’s expert panel of judges and evaluated based on their use of social media to provide information and inspiration to the Jewish community online through blogs, Facebook, Twitter and other social media platforms.

Rabbi Josh Yuter is not only a pulpit rabbi. He’s a popular blogger, tweeter and podcaster (his Jewish-themed podcasts were downloaded more than 20,000 times last year). After he launched an impressive Facebook page and Twitterfeed for his synagogue, he was chosen by the Rabbinical Council of America to teach other rabbis about social media and “Using the Web to Teach Torah” at its 2011 Annual Convention. @JYuter

Dave Weinberg is a Jewish innovator who uses social media to rally people for causes he supports, Weinberg runs Causil, which offers nonprofit consulting, conferences such as the Future of Jewish Nonprofit Summit, aimed at educating the Jewish community on social media. Dave also was invited to lead the Social Media Boot Camp at the AJOP Convention earlier this year. @Weinberg81

 Rabbi Jason Miller is a popular blogger on a wide variety of Jewish topics including technology, pop culture, politics and Jewish law. He is published regularly in the New York Jewish Week,The Huffington Post and the Detroit Jewish News. Rabbi Miller’s video response to former presidential candidate Governor Rick Perry’s “Strong” commercial has nearly 220,000 views on YouTube and was written about in dozens of national and international publications.

The Maccabeats, the male acapella group from Yeshiva University, have captivated American Jews with their hugely viral music videos promoting Jewish holidays. Their video for the song “Candlelight” has more than 7 million views alone. In 2011, the group was invited to perform for President Barack Obama at the official White House Chanukah party. The Maccabeats recently helped raise more than $88,000 for Gift of Life through their Miracle Match campaign .

Esther Kustanowitz  known to the online community as EstherK, is a respected blogger, tweeter and nonprofit consultant. Esther has traveled the globe presenting at various conferences on topics like Jewish communal engagement, social media and innovation. She was recently named a “Jewish Engagement Superstar” by Jewcy. @EstherK

Allison Josephs is the woman behind “Jew in the City,” a popular website and video blog that helps promote a positive perception of Orthodox Judaism to non-observant Jews and non-Jews alike. In the past year, she has been invited to speak at numerous events and was interviewed by NPR for her work. @JewInTheCity

Chaviva Galatz is a popular blogger, tweeter and social media personality. Shecreated and co-chaired the only Jewish-themed panel at the 2011 SxSW Interactive Festival in Austin, Texas, entitled “Jewish Synergy: Social Media and the New Community.” She was named to The New York Jewish Week’s prestigious “36 Under 36” list where she was credited for “Connecting with Jews, one Tweet at a time.”

William Daroff is the vice president for public policy and director of the Washington Office for the Jewish Federations of North America. To the Jewish online community he is @Daroff, a prolific tweeter who offers great insights into happenings in the American Jewish community. In 2011, Daroff co-chaired the social media committee for Prime Minister Netanyahu’s Global Coalition for Israel.

Lisa Colton is the founder of Darim Online, a non-profit dedicated to helping Jewish organizations and leaders effectively leverage social media to achieve their goals, including community building, education, communication and fundraising. In the past year, Colton has presented at conferences throughout the United States, and has hosted social media webinars online.

Rabbi Yonah Bookstein is the executive rabbi for JConnectLA, which hosts events to help young Jews “connect to something bigger.” A popular blogger, Bookstein’s writings regularly appear in The Huffington Post, Jewlicious and LA’s He also maintains the Facebook presence for both JConnectLA and the Jewlicious Festival, a popular youth event.

 (via HuffingtonPost)

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