Jewish Council on Urban Affairs

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Template:TOCnestleft Jewish Council on Urban Affairs is based in Chicago.

Rabbi Robert J. Marx - Founder

Rabbi Marx is the founder and a past president of the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, where he continues to be an active board member, leader and mentor. He is the Rabbi Emeritus of Congregation Hakafa in Glencoe, which he founded in 1983. In the 1960s, Rabbi Marx marched with Martin Luther King, Jr. in Alabama, fought for civil rights in Chicago and other cities, and organized a mission to Washington DC during the six-day war. Since then, he has continued his tireless pursuit of justice by helping to found Interfaith Worker Justice (formerly the National Interfaith Committee for Worker Justice) where he is a board member and past president and by serving as a leader of many other organizations including the Leadership Council for Metropolitan Open Communities and the Black-Jewish dialogue. Rabbi Marx was ordained at the Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati and received a PhD in philosophy from Yale University.

In 1968, Rabbi Marx authored The People In Between, a discussion of the interstitial role in which Jews have historically been cast. His thesis is that "An ability to understand this role could lead to the creation of real power-- power that is prophetic and just, that saves the oppressed and gives mission and purpose to Jewish existence."[1]

Board of Directors

As of 2009;


Advisory Board

Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty

The Illinois Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty was founded in 1976 by Mary Alice Rankin following the reinstatement of the death penalty in the state of Illinois. The death penalty was previously invalidated in the US in 1972 by the Supreme Court in the case Furman v Georgia as the use of the death penalty was deemed too arbitrary, which made it a form of cruel and unusual punishment.

Since its inception, ICADP has worked to educate people about the problems with the death penalty: the problem of innocence, the high cost of the death penalty, and the harm the capital punishment system does to victims' families, among others. ICADP has built a strong coalition including the Illinois Bar Association, the ACLU, Amnesty International, the Catholic Conference, the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, the League of Women Voters, and other organizations. Over the years, ICADP has developed strong grassroots support and a comprehensive legislative strategy which, together, ultimately led to the repeal of the death penalty in Illinois.[3]