Sheila Katz is the CEO of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW), a network of 180,000 grassroots activists and supporters across the U.S. who are living out their Jewish values and turning their progressive ideals into action.
Since her start as CEO, Sheila has overseen the founding of the “Rabbis for Repro” campaign, through which over 1000 Jewish clergy members have pledged to write, speak, and teach about reproductive health, rights, and justice, and create an open system of support for reproductive health care access. Additionally, under Sheila’s leadership, NCJW has made advancing anti-racism efforts at the national and local levels a priority, showing the intersectionality of racial justice in all of the organization’s main advocacy issues.
Prior to joining NCJW, Sheila served as Hillel International’s vice president for student engagement and leadership. During her 12 years at Hillel, Sheila engaged Jewish students and professionals around the world through programs including “Ask Big Questions,” a national initiative to guide students in meaningful conversations, and MitzVote, Hillel’s non-partisan civic engagement campaign.
In 2014, Sheila was appointed by the White House to committees advising President Obama on higher education and women’s rights. She is a longtime advocate for equal pay and an activist fighting for inclusion for people with disabilities. Sheila is currently on the executive committee of a national coalition of over 100 Jewish organizations working to promote safety, respect, and equity in Jewish communal spaces.
Sheila holds an M.S. in teaching from Pace University and B.A. in politics from Ithaca College. She is a proud alumna of the Wexner Foundation Field Fellowship and Teach for America. Sheila was named as one of the 50 most influential Jews in the world in 2020 by the Jerusalem Post and one of 2020’s faith leaders to watch by the Center for American Progress.