Soon after moving to Milwaukee 25 years ago, Andrea Schneider became involved with the Milwaukee Jewish Federation. Thankfully for the Federation, and the Jewish community, Schneider has remained deeply involved as a leader ever since. Reflecting on why, Schneider said, “First, the people I work with; Federation lay leaders and staff are incredibly talented and inspirational. Second, the meaningful work, the ability to make a difference in our community.”
Now, Schneider is stepping into a new leadership role: chair of Federation’s Jewish Community Foundation, which helps donors make a long-term impact on the community through a variety of planned giving and endowment options. “As a past Federation Board Chair and Campaign Chair, I’ve been on the Foundation Board for years,” said Schneider. “I believe in the importance of planned giving and the impact legacy giving can have. A healthy Foundation has the potential to provide for long-term planning that an Annual Campaign cannot, by virtue of being an annual campaign.”
“The world goes up and down,” continued Schneider, “and things change. Legacy giving provides stability for our agencies, and helps us plan for the future, so that we have the financial capacity to address needs in 5, 10 or 20 years.”
“Andrea will be an exemplary leader of our Foundation Board of Trustees,” said Mitch Moser, Executive Director, Jewish Community Foundation. “She has incredible knowledge and experience. Andrea also leads by example, as exemplified by her endowing her Annual Campaign gift and establishing and using her and her husband’s Foundation Donor Advised Fund for myriad philanthropic purposes. Her passion and excitement for the Foundation is contagious, and I am thrilled that she will lend her expertise to lead our Board of Trustees.”
Two overarching goals will guide Schneider over the next two years. “I want to continue the excellent work of [immediate past Foundation Chair] Greg Marcus, who led the Foundation during such a challenging time, including staff transitions, and set the standard for leadership.”
Schneider also seeks to increase the community’s understanding of the Foundation and legacy giving. “I want people to recognize that they are not limited by age or wealth. Anybody can be part of this, and we want you involved.”
Schneider originally moved to Milwaukee upon becoming a professor at Marquette University, where she is now Director of the Institute for Women’s Leadership and Director of the Law School Dispute Resolution Program. Schneider and her husband, Rodd Schneider, who is in-house counsel at Northwestern Mutual and the President-Elect of Hillel Milwaukee, have three sons: Josh, 25, a realtor in Los Angeles; Noah, 23, who co-founded a sports agency based in Whistler, Canada; and Zach, a junior at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
Other key Federation roles Schneider has held through the years include Women’s Philanthropy Chair, Women’s Philanthropy Campaign Chair, P2G Chair and Community Response Team member. Nationally, Schneider has served on Jewish Federations of North America’s Board, Young Leadership Cabinet, Women’s Philanthropy Board, Endowment Committee and Nominating Committee.
“Andrea has served on every level of leadership at the Federation and throughout the community, and her leadership is seen throughout the Milwaukee philanthropic ecosystem,” said Miryam Rosenzweig, Federation President and CEO. “We are so fortunate to have Andrea leading our Jewish Community Foundation, to ensure that we fulfill our mission to take care of the community’s needs not only now, but also many years from now. Through her vision and experience, Andrea will ensure the assets of the Federation for the future, so that we can build a vibrant Jewish future.”
“I’ve been so honored to have the opportunity to support Federation’s work, this past year and a half in particular,” said Schneider. “No one wishes to be tested in this way, but Federation stepped into the fire and succeeded with flying colors. It has been so exciting and meaningful to see Federation’s impact. I feel so fortunate to be part of this, and to be able to serve the community in this way.”