Serving on the Revenue Enhancement Committee of the Central Conference of American Rabbis provides me with an opportunity to shnorr the schnorrers. While at our CCAR Rabbinical Convention in New Orleans, I did a little brainstorming and came up with some brilliant fundraising ideas. Sadly, I’m sure they all will be suppressed:
1. Have conference in city that serves mainly treif food so that no one eats. With extra money and no where to spend it, rabbis will donate more to CCAR Annual Campaign.
2. Use small group discussions in more conventions sessions/plenaries, thus saving money on speakers budgets.
3. [self censored]
4. Auction off the control of the thermostat. How much would you pay to be able to have sole control on determining when to make the room warmer or cooler?
5. Extend convention privileges (though require full payment of tuition) to rabbis who received their ordination over the Internet.
6. Sell CCAR tshirts and sweatshirts. Make sure the designs don’t suck.
7. During the convention service – our CCAR “high holy day” convention service – pause after president’s sermon for a holy day appeal. We could raise 1000′s of dollars in tzedakah that way. (Note to program committee: make sure convention service doesn’t suck, just saying). (Ed. Note: services in this and past years definitely did NOT suck.)
8. Hire photographers to case out high treif restaurants and, after 10pm, on Bourbon Street. Print picture at One Hour Photoshop. Offer colleagues appearing in pictures the opportunity to keep pictures private in exchange for a significant, tax-deductible donation to the CCAR.
9. Just saying, next time we hold a convention in New Orleans (or Las Vegas or Atlantic City of old), schedule an MMC dinner opposite the WRN. Think of the entertainment possibilities! For added income, try a variation on idea #8. (MMC = Men’s Minority Caucus).
10. Keep planning conventions with the same high level of involvement, musicality, collegiality, intellectual engagement, practical rabbinic innovation, accessibility, technologicality – and the CCAR will assuredly continue to rise up in our collective esteem… thus influencing people to donate more to CCAR, or put CCAR in their wills, or refer people with means to the CCAR for naming opportunities on our convention programs or conference projects. (Note to Program Committee: there’s a big compliment in there for you somewhere.)