Jason Leivenberg

MPA - 2016

Senior Vice President, NuRoots
The Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles
Jason Leivenberg


I always had an appreciation for New York. As an LA native, I was captivated by its cultural boldness and energetic bustle. I had spent 4-5 years working at Hillel on the West Coast and kept observing that New York was pioneering and setting the agenda for the American Jewish communal life conversation. I wanted to be part of that in an elevated way in the hopes that I could be contributing to and shaping the momentum of the ecosystem for years to come.

I knew that I would need to hone my voice and thinking through the lens of doing good in the world and learning about what it takes to create and sustain impact for communities. And so I was seeking an interdisciplinary education where I could be exposed to practical frameworks necessary for the overall public sector (nonprofit and beyond) and wrestle with the history of ideas of diverse Jewish communities over time.

The Wagner-Skirball program provided a special platform for me to synthesize the unique components of these programs. The Wagner program helped me feel prepared with the skills to be a well-rounded champion for the distinct challenges of the public sector. Skirball pushed me to develop nuanced understandings of the history of the Jewish people while contextualizing how modernity could be molded by what we learned from the past.