The introduction of the Columbus Jewish News, columbusjewishnews.com, CJN Presents 12 Under 36 and An Evening with Henry Winkler were just some of the accomplishments highlighted June 6 at the 55th annual meeting of the Cleveland Jewish Publication Company at the company’s offices in Beachwood, a suburb of Cleveland.
At a time when most news-gathering organizations are decreasing news coverage, reducing staff and shuttering newspapers, the CJPC is expanding its footprint in Central and Northeast Ohio – and raising its profile beyond through digital platforms.
The combined circulation of the Columbus Jewish News and Cleveland Jewish News has doubled in the past year, said David R. Hertz II, CJPC Board Chair.
Hertz welcomed Michael Broidy, senior vice president of corporate affairs for Schottenstein Stores Corp., to the board. He is the first member to live in greater Columbus and his appointment follows the CJN’s launch of the Columbus Jewish News in August 2018.
“At that time we determined one of our next steps would be to place someone from the Columbus Jewish community onto our board,” Hertz said after the meeting. “We have been highly fortunate to bring Michael Broidy onto our board. He will prove to be invaluable because of his insight into the Jewish community in Columbus.”
“It is an honor to be the first Columbus representative on the CJPC Board of Directors,” Broidy said. “I look forward to working with the board and staff in continuing to build on the fine work they have done in publishing the Columbus Jewish News.”
Hertz spoke of the three revenue streams that build financial stability for the company: community events, specialty publications and the communication of news, which is published in the newspapers, websites and via email and social media.
“The stability of this three-legged stool is our strength and allows us to elevate our presence and beneficial impact to the community,” he said.
He credited the work of Kevin S. Adelstein, publisher and CEO of the Cleveland Jewish News and president of the CJPC.
“Given the industry context, the CJPC has had a phenomenal year,” Hertz said.
Hertz highlighted the appearance of Henry Winkler, who packed the 800-seat house at Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple in Beachwood, as well as the awards the Cleveland Jewish News has garnered.
“Digitally, we are killing it,” Hertz said. “The traffic at clevelandjewishnews.com is up about 30% year-over-year; Columbus is up more than 15% since the August launch.”
Serving the community was foremost in remarks made by Adelstein.
“We’ve been forced to break news at all hours, whether it’s Shabbat or not,” said Adelstein, referring to the Breaking News alert sent to the community about the shootings at Poway of Chabad and the company preference to not disseminate news on Shabbat.
In a presentation, Adelstein flashed headlines of hard-hitting stories and widely read features in the pages of the newspapers and on the websites. He also spoke about the company’s growing tribute book publishing department as well as city magazines.
In addition, the CJN hosted the American Jewish Press Association’s annual conference in Cleveland and partnered with Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple in Beachwood to provide a meal for federal employees furloughed during the government shutdown. This summer, the Columbus Jewish News is launching 18 Difference Makers.
Hertz also spoke of anti-Semitic events of the past year, particularly the shootings in Pittsburgh and Poway, Calif.
“It seems the white supremacist march in Charlottesville, Va., nearly two years ago was a precursor, not an anomaly,” he said. “... As a dynamic news and community organization, the CJN has a responsibility to rise to this challenge and help our community and communities across Ohio and the nation address this encroaching ugliness.”
Hertz said the editorial staff “will cover the challenges and stresses
anti-Semitism and hate speech are imposing on our community. They also will cover the solutions that organizations – both Jewish and non-Jewish – are employing to shine the light and drive out the darkness.
“... The CJN stands againstanti-Semitism. The CJN supports the state of Israel. The CJN serves the Jewish communities in which it does business.”