Shoshana Boyd Gelfand

Pears Hub Director

About

Shoshana leads on Pears Foundation’s international development grants, interfaith projects, and leadership development programmes.

As the director of Pears Foundation’s professional development hub she spends a large chunk of her time sharing leadership tools, facilitating team building workshops and offering peer learning opportunities to Pears partners.

In addition, her international background and experience in the faith sector allows her to function as a valued Jewish voice both within the British Jewish community and with interfaith leadership initiatives globally.

The Pears Foundation team is always learning and growing so we know first-hand how important it is to have opportunities to develop skills and reflect. So often that space doesn’t exist in the third sector. For that reason, I love using my expertise in coaching and leadership development to create a space for Pears partners to learn and develop their own skills and capacities.

As Vice-President of the Wexner Heritage Foundation in New York, Shoshana ran leadership development programmes for volunteers and professionals. She has also served as CEO of a large faith-based charity in the UK, developing and implementing their strategic planning process.

As part of her interfaith work, Shoshana currently serves as a Visiting Scholar at Sarum College and a Visiting Research Fellow at St. Benet’s Hall, Oxford University. She is a founding faculty member of Faith in Leadership, providing intensive leadership training to senior Muslim, Jewish and Christian leaders in the UK. She also liaises with the Vatican as part of IJCIC (the International Jewish Committee on Inter-religious Consultations).

Shoshana is a regular public speaker appearing at TEDx Jerusalem, Jewish Book Week, BBC Radio 2’s “Pause for Thought” and Radio 4’s “Something Understood”. She is also the author of The Barefoot Book of Jewish Tales.

She was ordained as a rabbi at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1993, after graduating magna cum laude from Bryn Mawr College. She has two decades of experience in organisational development in the USA and UK and is a certified practitioner of Polarity Management, Meyers-Briggs (MBTI) and Belbin.