Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC)

“.לֹא עָלֶֽיךָ הַמְּלָאכָה לִגְמוֹר, וְלֹא אַתָּה בֶן חוֹרִין לְהִבָּטֵל מִמֶּֽנָּה”
"It is not incumbent upon you to finish the task, but neither are you free to absolve yourself from it."

Pirkei Avot, Mishnah, 2:21

Our Mission & Principles

The Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) advances the Greater Rochester Jewish community's active commitment to progress in tzedek (justice) and tikkun olam (repairing the world) through education and advocacy for social justice and for Israel in Rochester, the United States, and around the world.

As the public affairs coordinating and advisory body for the organized Jewish community, we advocate on behalf for social justice, civil rights, Israel, and more, under the auspices of the Jewish Federation. In addition to safeguarding and protecting the rights of Jewish people, we promote mutual understanding among all groups in the community through education, dialogue, and advocacy. We further general public acceptance and practice of principles promoting human dignity, individual rights, and relationships across religious, racial, gender identity, sexual orientation, and ethnic lines.

Contact Us


Monica Gebell

Director of Community Relations


2022-2023 Areas of Focus  

We work with local Jewish organizations and other ethnic and religious community partners, as well as with the national Jewish Council for Public Affairs, to respond to emerging policy concerns and current events. 

Government Affairs
We en­gage in ed­u­ca­tion and ad­vo­cacy on is­sues af­fect­ing the Jew­ish com­mu­nity in Rochester and be­yond, in­clud­ing refugees, gun vi­o­lence pre­ven­tion, Is­rael, security for places of worship, and more. Our Gov­ern­ment Af­fairs Com­mit­tee fo­cuses on build­ing re­la­tion­ships with our leg­is­la­tors through leg­isla­tive vis­its and our an­nual Leg­isla­tive Lunch.

Combatting Antisemitism, Racism & Extremism 
Antisemitism—more currently referred to as Jew-hatred—and hate of all forms have surged in recent years. JCRC works to educate people of all ages to identify, prevent, and respond to hate crimes, white supremacist violence, and the persistence of online extremism.
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Our in­ter­faith part­ner­ships en­able us to offer mutually-mean­ing­ful pro­grams and ser­vice op­por­tu­ni­ties focused on edifying and uniting our community. Please contact us for more information about new coalition-building programs.

Community Engagement
From our seminars about inclusion to our re­sponses to re­cent oc­cur­rences of in­tol­er­ance, we take pride in our role as both a re­source and a leader in the broader Rochester community.


Join Us

We’re seeking active, dedicated Jewish lay leaders who represent and work on behalf of various constituencies including children, women, refugees, immigrants, the impoverished, and disenfranchised Rochesterians. Subcommittees include Government Affairs and Racial Justice. We also form subcommittees for special events and educational programming and are looking for individuals who: 

  • Can speak on behalf of a segment of the larger community (whether religious or civic in nature)
  • Enjoy collaborating in small group settings
  • Are moved to action where there is injustice in our city

All JCRC members must: 

  • Subscribe to the JCRC’s mission statement and guiding principles mentioned above
  • Participate actively, attending at least 75% of meetings and contributing ideas and suggestions to move the work of the JCRC forward
  • Substantially subscribe to the JCPA’s positions, except where the JCRC, with Federation approval, has chosen to deviate from those positions
  • Donate a minimum of $36 to Federation each fiscal year


Ways to Give

Every day, we work to provide compassionate, strategic, and comprehensive support, no matter the situation. There is no organization better positioned to do this than the Jewish Federation of Greater Rochester.