Agudath Israel announced today that Rabbi Avi Schnall, director of Agudath Israel of America’s New Jersey office since 2014, has decided that he will be stepping down from his position.
During Rabbi Schnall’s tenure, the New Jersey office’s accomplishments included – among many others – successful advocacy in increasing security funding for schools, defending the rights of Orthodox Jews to build shuls and eruvs in the face of discriminatory zoning laws, ensuring busing for nonpublic school students, and a first-time-ever tuition aid program for the Lakewood community. The New Jersey office pioneered Yahalom, a resource and referral center for parents of children with special needs, just launched Zahav, a resource and referral center for the growing senior community in Lakewood, and published a compliance guide for nonpublic schools.
Agudath Israel is pleased to announce that New Jersey legislative activities will continue under the leadership of Rabbi Shlomo Schorr, associate director of government affairs. Rabbi Schorr’s previous experience as a journalist, with strong relationships in local and state government, makes him a natural to advocate for Orthodox Jewish interests in Trenton and in city and town halls across the state.
“Avi’s clear voice has been heard for many years in the halls of government,” said Rabbi A.D. Motzen, Agudath Israel’s national director of government affairs. “Agudath Israel will continue to work with legislators on both sides of the aisle to amplify our message.”
“The New Jersey office identifies gaps in the frum community and works to solve them, such as with Yahalom and Agudah’s new Zahav program,” said Rabbi Yitzchok Ehrman, Agudath Israel’s COO. “We will continue Rabbi Schnall’s legacy in originating more solutions for New Jersey communities.”
“While we will miss Avi terribly,” said Duvy Gross, Agudath Israel board member, “we are excited that Rabbi Shlomo Schorr’s place on Agudath Israel’s advocacy team will continue to lead the New Jersey office to many more legislative achievements.”
“When Rabbi Schnall assumed the leadership of Agudath Israel’s New Jersey office some nine years ago, his energy, passion and commitment, his concern for both the community and the individual, supercharged the New Jersey office,” said Ralph Zucker, Agudath Israel board member. “Together with the dedicated staff in New Jersey, and in coordination with Agudah’s national offices, Agudah has made a lasting impact on countless lives. Rabbi Schnall’s legacy is strong, and we wish him the best.”
“It has been a source of pride to work with the Agudah office in New Jersey, under Avi’s direction,” said Moshe Netzer, Agudath Israel board member. “He leaves the office strong, and we expect to see more great things happening from the seeds that he has already planted.”