If you are wondering what the Jewish Federations of North America is, you are probably not alone. The federation alphabet soup has changed a lot over the years, though its core mission has remained the same.
A brief history:
In 1999, the federations’ consulting organization, the Council of Jewish Federations (CJF) merged with the federations’ fundraising arm, the United Jewish Appeal (UJA). This merger, creating greater efficiency and impact, was named the United Jewish Communities (UJC).
In 2008, UJC started looking into how its constituents perceived and understood its work across the country. Then it launched extensive research, including focus groups and a national survey, about the branding of Jewish federations — individually and the umbrella organization.
The data showed there was a gap in wider awareness of federations and their mission. That was partly because many federations had different logos and branding. To better connect with a highly mobile population and to engage new and especially younger donors, UJC determined to create a stronger, more consistent brand.
In 2009, UJC presented a new name — and logo: The Jewish Federations of North American (JFNA).
Today, this reflects the naming structure of three-quarters of federations worldwide — The Jewish Federation of fill in the blank.
As of 2012, more than 100 of 155 federations have adopted the bold, inviting and optimistic logo, with many now also using the newly developed tagline, “The Strength of a People. The Power of Community.”