Chevra Kadisha Conference - Cemetery Track


1. Cemetery Ownership in New Jersey - Only non-profit organizations can own cemeteries in New Jersey – but what is a non-profit, who enforces the rules, how do the rules get twisted, and should we really care? Participate in a lively discussion with a leading reform advocate, Rabbi Shammai Engelmayer from Temple Israel Community Center in Cliffside Park, NJ -  Sunday 2:10 pm

2. Bring Your Jewish Cemetery Back to Life – Dr. Mona Shangold, Bardin Levavy, Sheldon Whitman, and Roni Berkowitz tell the story of how Friends for Preservation of Middlesex County Jewish Cemeteries organized an entire community to revitalize several Jewish cemeteries.  They addressed the uncertain financial future of the cemeteries and responded to the challenge by blending creativity, tenacity, and networking.  Their web site at shows part of the story.  Hear the full story first hand, and find out what you need to know about the legal, accounting, and social aspects of forming a nonprofit organization to save your own cemetery.  - Sunday 4:20 pm

3. Cemetery Vandalism – What is the Cost – Both Financial and Emotional. When he first walked into the cemetery Rabbi Abraham Mykoff felt “overwhelming disbelief” as he surveyed damage to 500 headstones that “takes you back to the time of the Nazis.” “This was definitely anti-Semitic. They put all that manpower into this. It wasn’t a one-time prank. They came back a second time to finish the job — and they did.” Monday 9:45 am

4. Together We Stand – Jewish Cemetery Associations – Stan Kaplan of the Jewish Cemetery Association of Massachusetts and David Hoguet of Jewish Cemeteries of Greater Cincinnati represent organizations that have done the seemingly impossible - pulled together umbrella groups of diverse Jewish communities and interest groups to manage, care for, sell plots and provide genealogical information for numerous local Jewish cemeteries. Monday 2 pm


5. The Future is Yours - Understanding the Cost of Perpetual Care - Hayden Burrus is an actuary, and author of one of the few articles written about the finances of cemetery perpetual care funds. He will field questions and provide answers to issues around developing a stable financial plan for your Jewish Cemetery. You can find links to his 3 part article at his web site at  -  Monday 4:10 pm

6. Issues in Jewish Cemetery Management – A wide ranging discussion that will cover enforcing rules and policies, limiting ostentation; subsidizing costs, intermarried burials; cremated remains, and more. Tuesday 10 am