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Executive Social

Santa Barbara, CA
February 24, 2020

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Michael Rassler Santa Barbara, CA



Executive leader with an accomplished career in nonprofit management. Strong track record of social justice advocacy, building strategic community relationships, and fostering an open and inclusive workplace. Skilled at building organizational culture, negotiating the politics of large organizations, resolving conflict, building consensus, and leading complex, organization-wide initiatives. Demonstrated success in major gift solicitation, annual fundraising appeals, fiscal stewardship, capital development, corporate sponsorships and grants.

Community Engagement Change Management Strategic Planning

Educational Programs Program Planning Employee Training

Capital Campaigns Budgeting Grant Management

Public Relations Advocacy Public Policy

Relationship Building Volunteer Management Public Speaking


Executive Director, Jewish Federation of Greater Santa Barbara

Santa Barbara, CA July 2009 – December 2019

Led the development and execution of programs to build a vibrant and inclusive local Jewish community, to serve the needs of the local community and others around the world, and to strengthen relationships between the Jewish community and the community at large through engagement with other local, national, and international agencies.

Led effort to raise over $1 million in capital funds to renovate the Bronfman Family JCC and install essential security upgrades.

Provided leadership in the establishment of the Santa Barbara Village Program, a community-wide, inter-agency initiative to support aging in place for local seniors.

Led Strategic Visioning Initiative to build a more unified, inclusive, and respectful Santa Barbara Jewish community.

Organized and led over 35 Community Leadership Missions to Israel, Eastern and Western Europe, and Ethiopia.

Led the effort to create the Santa Barbara Jewish Film Festival.

Alpha Resource Center Award for Diversity and Inclusion.

CEO, United Jewish Federation of San Diego County

San Diego, CA January 2005 – June 2009

Oversaw successful operation and performance of Federation programs to deepen engagement in Jewish community life and mobilize community resources to address critical needs in the local community and around the world.

Oversaw reorganization of Federation governance structures and implementation of the Strategic Planning Report and Recommendations for the San Diego Jewish community.

Raised, transmitted and acknowledged almost $5 Million for the 2006 Israel Emergency Campaign.

Coordinated applications by local agencies and synagogues for Homeland Security grants totaling over $1 million to strengthen and secure facilities.

Hosted President Bill Clinton at the UJF’s 70th anniversary event, “Together As One,” the single most successful fundraising event in the organization’s history.

2007 Union of Reform Judaism’s Shutafim (Partners) Award for best Federation-Synagogue relations.

CEO, Jewish Federation of Greater Long Beach and West Orange County

Executive Vice President, Jewish Federation Foundation of Greater Long Beach and West Orange County

Long Beach, CA January 1997 – December 2004

Served concurrently as CEO of the Jewish Federation and EVP for the Jewish Foundation of Greater Long Beach and West Orange County.

Led campaign to build the Wienberg Jewish Federation Campus, a 90,000 sq. ft. campus housing the Barbara & Ray Alpert Jewish Community Center, Jewish Family & Children’s Service, Hillel, the Jewish Federation, and the Jewish Federation Foundation.

Achieved five Annual Campaign increases and six consecutive operating surpluses.

Collaborated with California State University Long Beach to establish a new Jewish Studies Program.

Associate Executive Vice President, Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County

Boca Raton, FL January 1991 – August 1996

Director of Planning and Budgeting, Greater Miami Jewish Federation

Miami, FL August 1986 – January 1991


Board of Directors, Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters of Santa Barbara 2009 – Present

Executive Committee

Member, Tri-County Coalition Against Hate 2016 – 2018

Board of Directors, Association of Jewish Communal Organization Professionals 2005 – 2009

National Award Committee

Member, Estate Planning & Trust Council of Long Beach 1997 – 2004

Member, Long Beach/Harbor Area Council of the Legal Aid Foundation of Los Angeles 1997 – 2004

National Board, Volunteer Organizations Active in Disasters 1991 – 1997


Master of Arts in Jewish Studies, The Baltimore Hebrew College 1986

Master of Social Work in Community Planning & Social Administration, University of Maryland Baltimore 1986

Master of Business Administration, Miami University, Oxford, OH 1984

Int’l Graduate Degree in Hebrew and Jewish Studies, World Union of Jewish Students, Arad, Israel 1982

Bachelor of Science in Business, Miami University, Oxford, OH 1981


Advanced Open Water Certified Diver

Rescue Certified Diver

Double Black Diamond Skier

Hopelessly Enthusiastic Golfer

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