NCJW NY’s Advocacy Leadership Committee

National Council of Jewish Women New York (NCJW NY) has a long and rich history of speaking out to educate the public on vital issues and influence legislators to implement progressive policies. Since its founding in 1894, NCJW NY has provided a voice for the voiceless and worked to address economic and social inequality. NCJW NY has been a leading voice in the fight against sex trafficking, child labor, sweatshops, and domestic violence.

Today, NCJW NY’s Advocacy Leadership Committee (ALC) is a multi-generational, interfaith group of women committed to affecting social change. We are diverse, from all different professions and walks of life, bringing varied skills and points of view to the Committee’s endeavors. In partnership with NCJW NY’s professional staff, ALC volunteers work to educate the community and to affect policy at the local, state, and federal level.

The ALC serves as leaders and conveners of a wide network of grassroots advocates. Toward this end, the ALC organizes panel discussions, film screenings, salons, and lobby visits. Committee members have an opportunity to develop an expertise in one or more issues of their choosing; to take a leadership role in setting the advocacy agenda; and develop the strategy to achieve the goals we set.

While NCJW NY is committed to seeking social justice through the lens of Jewish teachings and values, our work is non-sectarian and our issues are universal, affecting people of all races, religions, and walks of life.

Get Involved

Current areas of focus include:

  • Anti-Sex Trafficking
  • Reproductive Rights, Justice, and Gender Equality
  • Economic Justice, with a focus on Hunger and Nutrition
  • Immigration and Refugee Rights

The Advocacy Leadership Committee needs your ideas, your skills, your energy, and your voice!

To get involved with our Reproductive Rights, Justice, and Gender Equality initiative, please email Aviva Zadoff. To get involved with our Economic Justice initiative, please email Valerie Cooke. To get involved with our Anti-Sex Trafficking or Immigration and Refugee Rights initiatives, please email Pamela Kling Takiff, Chair of the Advocacy Leadership Committee.

Follow us on Facebook and on Twitter for the most recent updates on our events and news.

Upcoming Events

Sex Trafficking: A Wake Up Call For Men

Tuesday, May 22 from 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm

Panel Discussion: 6:30-8pm | Reception: 8-8:30pm

at Duane Morris, LLP | 1540 Broadway | New York, NY

(building entrance on 45th street)

Sex trafficking is a multibillion dollar industry and the fastest growing criminal enterprise in the world. The majority of victims in the United States are women and girls, often as young as 12 years old. In New York state, more than 4,000 underage youth are bought, sold and trafficked for sexual purposes each night. What is sex trafficking? Who is at risk of being trafficked? What tactics do traffickers use to lure and control their victims? Why don’t victims leave their traffickers? Join us for an informal panel discussion to find out how New York courts, law enforcement, community-based service providers and activists are addressing sex trafficking in our own backyard. Be part of the conversation and the solution.


Ted Bunch, chief development officer of A CALL TO MEN, is an educator, activist and lecturer working to end all forms of violence and discrimination against women and girls. He advises the NFL, NBA, NHL and other leagues to facilitate violence prevention.

The Honorable Fernando Camacho helped establish the New York Human Trafficking Intervention Court, shifting the way prostitution is viewed by the justice system. Judge Camacho is currently Acting Supreme Court Justice of Suffolk County.

Anthony Favale coordinated human, sex and labor trafficking investigations within the NYPD for more than 30 years. He is currently vice president at Vornado Realty Trust.

Ronald E. Richter is CEO of JCCA, one of the largest private agencies serving New York’s most vulnerable children and families. Prior to joining JCCA, he served as a New York State Family Court judge. In 2016, Mayor de Blasio appointed him to the NYC Children’s Cabinet Advisory Board.


Michael D. Grohman is the managing partner of Duane Morris’ New York office and chair of the firm’s Private Client Services Group. He spearheads the firm’s work on behalf of Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS), a nationally recognized organization committed to ending commercial sexual exploitation and the domestic trafficking of children, of which he is a board member.


David W. Budd Michael D. Schwamm, Partner, Duane Morris LLP | Peter Takiff


Jess Dannhauser | Robert Levitan | Howard Rubin | Stellario D’Urso | Reverend Matthew J. Moretz | Paul Silverstein | Rick Elezi | Eitan Peled | Mark Schnurman | Barry Freedman | Ronald Richter | Richard Schuster | Minister Galen Guengerich | Jeff Rosen | Alex Sokolow | Rabbi David Ingber | Christopher Rothko | Peter Yarrow | Scott Kling

Please register here.

Past Events

A Conversation on Sex Trafficking and Immigration in Our Communities

Tuesday, February 6th, @ 6pm at San Damiano Hall, 127 West 31st Street

The current status of immigration in the US has a profound effect on women and families. Please join NCJW NY and The Migrant Center for an informative conversation with immigration attorneys working with those who are victims of domestic violence and sex trafficking. A the end of the program, we will share meaningful ways that individuals in our communities in need of legal services can get connected to the pro-bono legal community. Moderated by Maria Mostajo, former state prosecutor and former Inspector General of various NYC agencies, including the Department of Corrections and School Construction Authority.

Panelists included:
-Andrea Panjwani– Legal Director at the Center for Safety and Change, Rockland County’s rape crisis, domestic violence, and human trafficking agency
-Hamra Ahmad– Legal Director at Her Justice, a nonprofit organization providing legal services to women to secure life-changing results
-Sabrina Talukder– Staff Attorney at The Legal Aid Society in the Domestic Violence/Immigration Unit in the Family Law Practice

2018 NYC Women’s March

Saturday, January 20th

NCJW NY was thrilled to participate in the 2018 NYC Women’s March, and to hear NCJW CEO Nancy Kaufman speak. As she said, “As a progressive faith-based women’s organization, we are thrilled to join in solidarity with the organizers, march supporters, and participants to send a message to the new Congress and administration that the rights of women, families, and communities must be protected.”

One Click Crimes

Monday, October 16, 2017 at Cardozo Law School
Up against a multi-billion dollar industry, trafficking victims and their advocates find themselves on a collision course with judges, special interest groups, websites like, and a law intended to protect Internet freedom. We hosted a panel of noted lawyers and activists for a discussion of the challenges faced by trafficking victims and their advocates seeking justice. 

Screening of I Am Jane Doe

June 12, 2017 at Scandinavia House, 58 Park Avenue, NYC
I Am Jane Doe chronicles the epic battle that several American mothers are waging on behalf of their middle-school daughters, victims of sex trafficking on, the adult classifieds section that for years was part of Village Voice. It is a heart-wrenching human story and fresh look at a social and legal issue that affects every community in America.

Voices for Choice Panel Discussion

May 9, 2017, 6:00 pm 
An evening of education and conversation on the current realities of reproductive justice in New York City and State. Learn about the work of NCJW NY’s reproductive justice advocacy efforts and the unique perspective of NCJW NY in the fight for reproductive justice as a progressive faith-based organization. Expert speakers will discuss how we can all work together to protect the rights of women.

Lobby Day in Albany 

April 5, 2017
A delegation of volunteer advocates joined NCJW NY on a day of advocacy in Albany to urge state legislators to pass key reproductive justice legislation – the Reproductive Health Act and the Comprehensive Contraception Coverage Act.  In addition, advocates discussed the scope of sex trafficking in our state, and the need for more services and support for victims and survivors.

God of Vengeance

March 2017
NCJW NY hosted a talkback on sex trafficking after the Off-Broadway performance of this controversial 1907 Yiddish play about a Jewish family who owns a brothel.

Stories of Courage

January 2017
A discussion with bestselling author Isabel Vincent, who wrote Bodies and Souls: The Tragic Plight of Three Jewish Women Forced into Prostitution in the Americas, and Lori Cohen, Director of the Anti-Trafficking Initiative at Sanctuary for Families, about sex trafficking in past and present.

Judicial Intervention

October 2016
A panel discussion co-sponsored by the law firm Duane Morris and featuring The Honorable Judge Toko Serita of the Queens Human Trafficking Intervention Court; Rachel Lloyd, Founder and President, Girls Educational and Mentoring Services (GEMS); Julina Guo, Immigrant Justice Corps Fellow, Sanctuary for Families; and John Temple, Chief, Human Trafficking Response Unit, New York District Attorney’s Office.

Interfaith Passover Seder

April 2016
A small-plate Seder exploring modern day slavery in our midst, led by Rabbi Jessica Kate Meyer of Romemu and the Reverend Adrian Dannhauser, Associate Rector of Church of the Incarnation.

In Our Backyard

January 2016
A film screening followed by a conversation with filmmaker Danielle Rose; Carol Smolenski, Executive Director at ECPAT USA; and Iryna, a sex trafficking survivor.

Sex Trafficking and Pornography: Making the Connection Visible 

October 2015
A presentation featuring Dr. Gail Dines of Wheelock College and Culture Reframed; Dr. Holly Atkinson, Distinguished Medical Lecturer and Medical Student Advisor at CUNY School of Medicine and former Director of the Human Rights Program in The Arnhold Global Health Institute at Mount Sinai; and Lori Cohen, Esq., Director of the Anti-Trafficking Initiative at Sanctuary for Families.

To learn more about sex trafficking here in New York City and throughout the United States, visit the We Were Slaves website.

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