Civic Engagement

Dialogue Across Differences:
An Evening with Living Room Conversationsconvo

Tuesday, November 14, 7:30-9:15 PM (Doors open at 7 PM)

Today more than ever, political divisions are straining cherished relationships between family and friends. As you prepare to gather with family and friends in November and December, there is no better time to learn how to navigate challenging conversations with respect and curiosity.

Featuring John Gable and Joan Blades, who have formed a very real friendship that is fostering meaningful exchanges between people from different parties, groups and backgrounds. Although it sounds like the plot of a rom-com — Republican guy meets liberal woman; sparks fly! —Gable worked in Republican politics before entering the tech world. A Berkeley, California, native and progressive, Blades (who co-founded in 1998) is the co-founder of

Join the JCC East Bay and Joan Blades, founder of Living Room Conversations, for an introduction on how to create dialogue across difference. Through thoughtful conversation and the power of listening, we can begin to mend fractured relationships we have with our friends, family, neighbors, and community. These relationships across difference are key to the health and prosperity of a society that believes in respect and equality for all. Is there a way for us to tap into the kindness and goodwill that we’ve seen in our friends across the political spectrum?

Founded in 2010, Living Room Conversations strives to cultivate respectful engagement among people who may hold profoundly different points of view, and works to build relationships that generate understanding and enable collaborative problem-solving.

Join the conversation here.

This program is made possible in part by a grant from the Lisa and Douglas Goldman Fund. 


Starting with Ourselves: A Jewish Open Space for Anti-Racism

Often we feel we lack the language, support system, or knowledge to do or support anti-racist work. This gathering will be a supportive space to explore and reflect on experiences and assumptions in the service of ending racism. Come ready to engage in thoughtful and thought-provoking conversations. All questions, concerns, levels of understanding, and connections with Judaism are welcome! No experience necessary!

*All locations are ADA accessible. Please contact with accessiblity needs and for any other information about the location. For more information and to RSVP, please contact the Racial Justice team:

Gatherings take place the first Thursday of the month from 7 - 9 PM in the following locations:
December 7, JCC East Bay, Berkeley
January 11, JCC East Bay, Berkeley (this is a 2nd Thursday)
February 1, San Francisco
March 7, San Francisco

For location information, click here.

* All are welcome and we anticipate white Jews to be the majority of participants at these sessions. If you are a Jew of Color and would like to learn about ways to connect with other Jews of Color through Bend the Arc, please contact Leili Davari-Bitton at

All locations are ADA accessible. Please contact with accessiblity needs and for any other information about the location.