Ashira Solomon will be heading many initiatives working toward unity, diversity, equity and inclusion.
The Jewish Community Relations Council/American Jewish Committee (JCRC/AJC) has created a new role in the organization — community associate — which has been filled by Detroit native Ashira Solomon.
Solomon will be working to build and enhance JCRC/AJC’s initiatives in unity, diversity, equity and inclusion.
“We wanted someone who, in addition to reaching out to the African American community, could also reach inward to the Jewish community in issues of inclusion,” JCRC/AJC Executive Director Rabbi Asher Lopatin said.
“With all these ambitious programs we needed to find someone who could really be a sensitive, caring and capable person who had a background in taking big ideas and putting them to action, and also someone who understood how to be sensitive to the needs of different communities and to be a good ally with other organizations,” Lopatin said.
“Ashira Solomon is the perfect person to meet all of these needs, and it worked out really well.”
Solomon comes from a Christian family, and when searching for a connection spiritually, told her parents at 13 years old that she was going to be Jewish. “Along with being multiracial, I’m a convert as well,” Solomon said. “So, I’m very familiar with both religions and the positive impacts they provide to individuals.”
Solomon was the co-chair of the Diversity Council at Berkley High School. She became a peer mediator, continued similar work in college and then went on to work at Farber Hebrew Day School-Yeshivat Akiva for six years.
“It’s something I’ve always been passionate about,” she said.
Solomon will be working with the Coalition for Black and Jewish Unity and with its different committees and programs. She will also be working on an initiative addressing trauma in the Black community as well as managing a Black and Jewish fellowship opportunity for university students.
“Sometimes we start these conversations about diversity, justice and inclusion and what that means, and then it just kind of ends up dwindling,” she said. “We want to keep the conversation going and get people involved.
“I think the ultimate goal is to bring people together,” she said. “I feel very grateful to be in a position that I can help make connections and do very fine work that gives others the opportunity to do great things, both in their community and beyond.”