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Sheila Scharfman

Travels from New York, NY

Availability: Contact JNF Speakers Bureau for availability.


JNF's Work in Israel, Positively Israel


Sheila Scharfman has been involved with Jewish philanthropy for many years and currently serves on JNF’s New York Board of Directors, the National Sapphire Society Board, and the Realignment Committee. She was formerly a member of the Westchester Board.

In addition to her work with JNF, Scharfman has been involved with various other philanthropy and civic groups and has served as a trustee of her synagogue. In 2006, she was part of a contingent that brought a Torah to a remote Jewish community in Russia, and she has toured the remnants of the Jewish community throughout China. She has also worked as an interviewer with the Shoah Foundation for Visual History, documenting the histories of Holocaust survivors for educational purposes, museums and archives.

Scharfman raised her three sons in Scarsdale, NY, and currently lives in her native borough, Brooklyn, NY, and on the North Fork of Eastern Long Island.  She is active in several neighborhood organizations in the DUMBO community of Brooklyn, and is a sponsor and committee member of the Brooklyn Public Library.

Scharfman graduated summa cum laude from Brooklyn College, with a JD from Fordham University and a MS in Counseling from Pace University.  She is a mental health counselor, and most recently worked at the Brooklyn Family Justice Center, where she counseled children and their families who were victims or witnesses of domestic violence. Previously, she served as the Senior Advisor to the Commissioner for the NYC Department of Juvenile Justice, incorporating her legal and mental health background.  She has also worked in the private sector and as a government attorney.

Download a prepared introduction for Sheila Scharfman


Makor (Hebrew for “source”) is a specially-trained cadre of highly-involved Jewish National Fund volunteers. Our primary role is to support the core functions of JNF by direct fundraising. Thus, we identify prospective donors, conduct direct solicitations in our own communities and around the United States and assist in educating the public about the JNF and its projects.

Makor also serves as a source for lay leadership. We are leaders in our own communities, and provide training and inspiration for other community leaders on solicitation techniques, board development and outreach and on the work of the JNF. Makor members also assume JNF leadership positions on a national level.

We are proud leaders who are committed to the mission of the JNF, the caretaker of the land of Israel forever. In addition, Makor is a source of innovation within the JNF. Our diverse backgrounds, coupled with our common commitment, foster a free-flow of ideas to keep JNF as relevant and productive as possible.

Makor members travel to Israel each year to study JNF projects and programs in depth, and bring their insights and experiences to you. Members speak at no charge.


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