Wiener’s Winning Column

There’s an interesting “back-story” behind Julie Wiener who, for nearly a decade, has been one of the most prolific and widely-read journalists in the Anglo-Jewish press, especially during her tenure as national reporter at the Jewish Telegraphic Agency (JTA), a kind of “Jewish Associated Press” feeding articles to local Jewish newspapers across North America. Currently writing a first-person monthly column called “In the Mix” for the New York Jewish Week, she reveals something few readers would have known about her based on her prior objective news reporting: she is intermarried.

That a prominent Jewish communal professional is intermarried comes as no surprise to us at JOI. The high intermarriage rate has permeated all aspects of non-Orthodox Jewish life, including among communal professionals. What is amazing about Wiener’s column is the open way in which she discusses her personal journey, especially considering that being intermarried is probably the most closeted topic among professionals in the organized Jewish community today.

To date she has written three very intriguing columns that we highly recommend reading:

  • Conversionary Tactics(4/21/06) about the challenge of promoting Jewish conversion to non-Jewish spouses;
  • A Rosenblum By Any Other Name…(5/19/06) about whether to give her daughter a “Jewish-sounding” name;
  • And “Making the Cut(6/16/06) about the emotional issues surrounding ritual circumcision for new parents who are intermarried.

We look forward to reading many more columns from Ms. Wiener, and we are especially thankful to our friends at the New York Jewish Week—the largest local Jewish newspaper in North America—for having the conviction to publish it. (NOTE: if you live in the New York City region and don’t subscribe to the Jewish Week, you can try it free for two months through a special arrangement with JOI by completing this form.)

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