Jonathan Orenstein, Krakow JCC
@jonathan.ornstein (FB) / @JCCKrakow (X) / @jonathan_krk (Instagram)
Since its opening in April 2008 by King Charles III, Jonathan has served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish Community Centre of Krakow, Poland, an organization devoted to rebuilding Jewish life in Krakow. The JCC boasts over 850 Jewish members, welcomes 10,000 visitors a month and is one of Poland’s most visible signs of Jewish revival. He created Ride For The Living and Holocaust Survivor Day, two global initiatives with tens of thousands of participants.
Prior to the JCC’s opening, he taught Modern Hebrew at Krakow’s Jagiellonian University Department of Jewish Studies for 6 years and founded the “Gesher” association for Polish-Israeli dialogue. A native of New York City, Jonathan moved to Israel in 1994, living for 7 years on a kibbutz in the Neger desert and served in a combat unit in the I.D.F. before moving to Poland in 200l.
He is a founding member of the Krakow Association of Christians and Jews where he serves as vice president. He also serves on the boards of the Krakow branch of the Child Survivors of the Holocaust organization, Hillel Poland, JCC Global, and the Abraham Global Peace Initiative. Jonathan, a primary architect of Poland’s contemporary Jewish rebirth, is a frequent international speaker and media contributor on issues relating to Jewish Poland, and an activist for Holocaust survivors.