All great leaders start somewhere and for those living in the Tampa Bay area, they can start with the Hope Cohen Barnett Leadership Institute. The program's main thrust is developing and mentoring young adults to become the Jewish community leaders of tomorrow. - Jonathan Ellis, Past President of the Tampa JCCs & Federation.

Are you a young Jewish adult ages 25-40 with a passion for making a difference? Want to take a leadership role in making the Jewish community stronger? Experience the Hope Cohen Barnett Leadership Institute (HCBLI).


The Tampa JCCs & Federation and the Jewish Federation of Florida's Gulf Coast invite emerging young leaders from the Tampa Bay area to participate in this innovative, eleven-week program, leadership development experience.


Now in its 18th year, HCBLI is designed to inspire young professionals to get involved and take on leadership roles in the Tampa Bay Jewish community. Throughout the years, graduates have held leadership positions on boards and committees of local Jewish organizations and agencies on both sides of the Bay.


Nearly 300 young professionals have graduated from HCBLI, representing a cross-section of the region, both geographically and professionally. Participation is limited to 18 people. Class sessions run 6:30-9:00 PM unless noted otherwise. Dinner starts at 6:30pm, with class beginning at 7:00pm.



• $99 (early bird) per person if you apply by Monday, September 12, 2022.

• $150 per person thereafter. Includes course materials. Dinner will be served during all sessions.



Final deadline to apply is Friday, September 23, 2022. Applicants will be notified by email about the status of their applications by Friday, September 30, 2022.

Please contact Lisa Robbins at to learn more.



• Enjoy an exclusive discussion with philanthropist Bryan Glazer, Co-chairman of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers

• Learn about the Florida-Israel Business Accelerator and Tampa’s innovation ecosystem

• Develop an understanding of the Tampa Bay Jewish community

• Experience the important work of our local beneficiary agencies



  • Thursday, October 13 – Orientation & Jewish Community 101 – 5:30-9:00pm
  • Friday, October 28  - Shabbat Dinner (Private Home, Time TBD)
  • Wednesday, November 2 – Jewish Philanthropy – One Buc Place
  • Monday, November 14 – Meet the Agencies: The Challenges Facing our Jewish Community
  • Monday, November 28  - Allocations: Sustaining our Community
  • Tuesday, December 6 – Jewish Identity 
  • Monday, December 19 – Leadership Every Day
  • Monday, January 9th – Florida-Israel Business Accelerator – Connecting to Israel as the Start-Up Nation”
  • Monday, January 23 – How One Person Can Make a Difference
  • Sunday, February 5 – Annual President’s Dinner 
  • Monday, February 6 – What’s Next? Getting Involved In Your Community
  • Thursday, March 30 – Graduation 



Participants are expected to attend all sessions. By participating in HCBLI, participants are committing to giving a meaningful gift to the Annual Campaign of either the Tampa JCCs & Federation or the Jewish Federation of Florida's Gulf Coast. This gift is in addition to the registration cost for the program.



For more information about the HCBLI please contact Lisa Robbins (Tampa JCCs & Federation - Hillsborough and East Pasco Counties) at 813.769.4723 or email  or Maxine Kaufman (Jewish Federation of Florida’s Gulf Coast - Pinellas, West Pasco and Hernando Counties) at 727.333.3106 or email


"This course opens your eyes up to all the good that we do as Jews in our area and around the world as well as for Jews and for all those who need help." – Jeff Benatar, HCBLI Class of 2022


"It is a great introduction to the Tampa Bay Jewish community and offers a gateway to become a more active member of our vibrant and compassionate community."  – Jon Philipson, HCBLI Class of 2022


"HCBLI is a great way to connect with young Jewish leaders in Tampa, and creates a sense of community - especially for those who are new to the area." - Dan Berman, HCBLI Class of 2022


"HCBLI was an incredible experience like I've never had before.  You get to meet with a variety of young Jews who all have the same goal in mind, to reinvigorate your love and passion for being Jewish.  This program allowed me to meet wonderful new friends, make amazing connections in the Tampa community and further my knowledge in our culture.  I felt lost in reconnecting with my Jewish people, and this was the most perfect place to come and start my journey." – Alexa Jasenof, HCBLI Class of 2022


A critical piece of HBCLI is that it introduced me to key leaders in the community, people who have been at the table a long time and gave me some insight into how decisions are made. It’s enabled me to create relationships with successful people who have been willing to be a sounding board as I’ve gotten more deeply involved and invested in the community. Joe Probasco, 2007 HCBLI Graduate, Past President of the Tampa JCCs & Federation


"I felt it was my duty to give back to the Jewish community and bring a fresh approach to the local Jewish boards. We were encouraged to get involved and take the bull by the horns." -David Delrahim, 2011-2012 HCBLI Graduate, Menorah Manor Trustee and Treasurer


"This program allowed me to better understand the Jewish community around me as someone newer to the Tampa Bay area. It was inspiring to see how so many community members and guest speakers have contributed to the community in their own unique ways to make it a better place for all of us, and especially for those in need. I am thankful for this pathway into leadership and encourage future leaders to explore the program!" – Jen Caetano, HCBLI Class of 2021


“HCBLI helped make Federation more tangible. I gained more exposure to the community and better understood how Federation helps and supports people in here in Tampa and around the world. I was also connected to other like-minded people who want to heal the world. Everyone who participates has the passion, drive and will to dedicate themselves to making the world a better place.”– Carlyn Neuman, 2007 HCBLI Graduate, Hillel of the Florida Suncoast Board Member, Weinberg Village Board Member, National Young Leadership Cabinet Member


"HCBLI gave me a broad picture and greater understanding of Jewish activity in the Tampa Bay area. HCBLI laid a foundation for me to grow within the Jewish community and my interest and involvement in the community has grown exponentially each year.”- Ashley Simon, 2013-2014 HCBLI Graduate, Board Member of the Tampa JCCs & Federation


"It's a great opportunity to learn what opportunities exist in the Tampa Bay area to emerge as a young Jewish professional leader, and allows for great networking opportunities and building friendships."- Devon Francke, HCBLI Class of 2021


"As a board member and past president of Weinberg Village Living Residences, it was very meaningful to lead an organization that has a goal of caring for and enhancing the lives of the elderly, which is one of the biggest mitzvahs we can do. HCBLI introduced me to the variety of local Jewish organization and sparked my passion for Jewish involvement.”– Aaron Silberman, 2009-2010 HCBLI Graduate, Weinberg Village Past President and Board Member, Tampa JCCs & Federation Board Member and Treasurer


"HCBLI created an educational and inclusive environment that gave me a greater appreciation for the Jewish community. I really enjoyed the variety of perspectives and diverse opinions from within the group, which helped foster thought-provoking discussions. I also loved our sessions about the federation’s various agencies, the allocations process, fundraising strategies, and opportunities for future involvement.  The program did an exemplary job of integrating Jewish learning with leadership skills, and I graduated with a network of friends and the tools to become a more effective leader in the Jewish community." – Andrea Cohen, 2018-2019 HCBLI Graduate, Volunteer with IMPACT Advisory Committee


"I would recommend HCBLI to any young Jewish adults looking for a chance to help their community. No matter what your passions are, there is an organization that could use you to do some good!" - Jesse Davidson, HCBLI Class of 2021


"This is a phenomenal way to build a community of Jewish peers interested in sustaining and developing Jewish life." - Cantor Katie Oringel, HCBLI Class of 2021