Scott Kaufman Associate Member of the Board of Governors

Scott Kaufman is the Chief Executive Officer of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit, the primary philanthropic and volunteer organization for metro Detroit’s Jewish community. Appointed in July 2009, Kaufman is responsible for leading the organization in its mission to take care of the needs of the Jewish community and build a vibrant Jewish future in Detroit, Israel and around the world.
Kaufman is widely regarded as one of the foremost innovators and community-builders in the Jewish communal world. A variety of projects “made in Detroit” under his tenure have since been exported to communities around the continent. These include Detroit’s young adult platform, NEXTGen Detroit, which has since become a national model for innovative outreach and engagement; The Centennial Endowment Campaign; and JHELP, a communitywide platform that makes it easier for people to access the help they need. He also championed the Detroit Federation’s recent youth mental health initiative, “We Need to Talk,” which is helping create community-wide awareness of the mental health issues facing young people and providing resources for those in need.
Under Kaufman’s leadership, the Detroit Federation has seen steady growth in terms of its Annual Campaign dollars, directed gifts, endowments, grants, donor base, young adult engagement and overall participation in Jewish communal activities. Nationally, he has been active with the JDC, the Jewish Agency for Israel, Jewish Federations of North America and Leading Edge. He is a past chairperson of the Large City Executives of the Federation system and the Tarrytown Group, a forum for CEO’s of many of the largest private and public funders in the Jewish world.
He has been recognized for his outstanding leadership and innovation as recipient of various awards including the 2008 Pappas Innovative Idea Award, given annually to the Federation professional who originates and executes the best new idea; 2005 Frank A. Wetsman Award, Federation’s highest honor for young male leadership; and 2001 Mark Family Young Leadership Award, awarded to the emerging leader making the largest impact on Federation.
Prior to joining Federation in 2007, Kaufman was a real estate developer. He is also a founding partner of Joe Dumars’ Fieldhouse, a sports and entertainment facility in Sterling Heights.
Kaufman earned a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Michigan in 1989. In addition to his work, he is dedicated skier, cyclist and aspiring boxer.

He is an Associate Member since February 2019.