CLEVELAND, OH (July 31, 2013) – Lynda Bender, executive director of the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage, is retiring from the museum Milton Maltz, chair of the museum’s board of directors, announced today.
“We appreciate Lynda’s service to the museum,” Maltz said, “especially her work to advance our educational offerings and our programming. We wish her well as she begins this new chapter in her life.”
Bender was a member of the staff that helped open the Maltz Museum in 2005. Prior to her appointment as executive director, Bender served as director of education and public programs for the museum.
Maltz said the board intends to embark on a national search for a new executive director. Until a replacement is found, David Schafer, currently the museum’s director of development, will serve as interim executive director starting August 1.
Schafer joined the Maltz Museum in 2010. Before joining the museum, he served for 11 years as executive director for the Development Corporation of Israel (State of Israel Bonds) and was responsible for operations and campaign results conducted in Ohio and Kentucky. Before joining the Maltz Museum, he served as the director, Palm Beach County, for the American Friends of Magen David Adom. There, he secured the largest gift annuity in the organization’s history – $1 million – and led a successful $1 million challenge grant. He also has served as the director of the Florida Holocaust Museum. For two years, he was a professional basketball player in Israel. He currently is chair of the Yom Hashoah commemoration committee and is a member of the community relations committee for the Jewish Federation of Cleveland. A native Clevelander, Schafer is a graduate of the College of Wooster. He and his wife Orna have two adult children.
“We are delighted that David has agreed to serve as our executive director during this important time of transition,” said Maltz. “Our board is confident he will serve as the perfect steward for our museum. Our intent is to not miss a beat and continue serving our members and the community with the top quality exhibits and programming for which we have gained a national reputation.”