The Vilna Names First Ever Director of Development

The Vilna Names First Ever Director of Development Image

Rosa Kramer Franck has been named Director of Development at the Vilna Shul, Boston’s Center for Jewish Culture (BCJC). Franck, who will begin her post on July 2nd, brings over 13 years of diverse development experience and exceptional leadership in the Jewish community. She comes to the Vilna with a broad based knowledge of Greater Boston, from a Senior Advancement Officer at Hebrew College, a Development Manager at Mayyim Hayyim, and her early career at Boston’s CJP. Ms. Franck holds a MBA in mission driven management from the Heller School as well as a MA from the Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program, both at Brandeis University. Rosa truly is a woman of our city.

With all of Rosa’s experience, Deborah Feinstein, the President of the Vilna’s Board of Directors, wanted to know why she was attracted to the Vilna. Ms. Franck said, “This is an important and special time for the Vilna. There is tremendous excitement happening with the building's projected renovations and with its new executive leadership.  I am very much looking forward to working with Barnet and the board and sharing their vision. As someone enjoys creative, strategic thinking and partnership, I can't wait to sink my teeth in.”

Barnet Kessel, the Vilna’s Executive Director, explained that the Vilna is small entrepreneurial organization that works as a team and has set goals high for itself. There is much to accomplish in the next five years and Barnet is focused on organizational vision. He asked Ms. Franck to talk about her thoughts about Vilna’s mission. She described, “I bring a real passion for the Vilna and a strong desire for it to secure its place on the map as a lively, exciting home for a diverse community. It is a place where people spanning different ages, affiliations, and backgrounds can walk through the door and find a home and a connection, and make a positive contribution.  I very much want to work toward seeing the Vilna stretch at the seams with people and culture, and to open our gates wide for all to enter.”

The Vilna’s strategic plan is to restore the historic building and place it as the center of Jewish cultural life in downtown Boston. Ms. Franck will design and implement, along with the staff and energetic volunteers, an exciting, multi-faceted annual campaign.

Ms. Franck lives in Jamaica Plain with her husband, Mike and children Mira and Erza. All will be by her side as she works to forge the Vilna to the future.


For more information about this topic, please contact Barnet Kessel at 617-523-2324, or e-mail

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