DataBank Briefing - February 25, 2016 - Berman Jewish DataBank Marks the 30th Anniversary of Its Founding

Sponsor(s): Berman Jewish DataBank@The Jewish Federations of North America

Key Findings:

Berman Jewish DataBank marks the 30th anniversary of its founding

Dear DataBank community:

This year marks the 30th anniversary of the founding of the Berman Jewish DataBank.
Established in 1986 as the North American Jewish Data Bank at the City University of New York, the DataBank was also housed at Brandeis University and the University of Connecticut before moving to The Jewish Federations of North America in 2013.

“I am thrilled that the DataBank has reached its 30th year of operation” said Mandell (Bill) Berman, who has funded the DataBank for its entire existence through the Jewish Federation system and three years ago provided a permanent endowment to locate it at JFNA. “What started as a call to preserve local Jewish community studies has been transformed into an important resource for learning about and planning for the North American Jewish community.”

Today, the DataBank holds hundreds of U.S. national, local, comparative and topical studies; Canadian national and local studies; world and U.S. Jewish population reports; and many other resources. We formally collaborate with the Berman Jewish Policy Archive at Stanford University and the University of Connecticut Center for Judaic Studies and Contemporary Jewish Life. An oversight committee is helping us devise new policies to guide our continued development.

The current DataBank management wishes to acknowledge with gratitude the six previous directors — Barry Kosmin, Egon Mayer z’l, Jim Schwartz, Mervin Verbit, Leonard Saxe and Arnold Dashefsky — all of whom contributed greatly to the DataBank’s advancement. Today’s DataBank is a reflection of their dedicated service.

The DataBank relies on the generosity of commissioning organizations and researchers who archive and share their studies, reports and data files.  We are grateful for their spirit of collaboration in advancing our collective understanding of North American Jewry.

The ultimate goal of the DataBank is to serve our stakeholders, and we are pleased to be doing just that. Last year, more than 32,000 people visited the DataBank from over 150 countries.

The DataBank is not standing still. We continue to acquire and produce new materials for our stakeholders.  We are currently laying the groundwork for a redesigned website and for additional online research tools on the site.  And we are seeking out other institutional partners to expand our resources.

As always, if you have any questions or comments, please feel free to contact us at We look forward to hearing from you.

Laurence Kotler-Berkowitz

Director, Berman Jewish DataBank

Language: English