Thursday, November 18, 2021 (San Francisco, CA) — The Contemporary Jewish Museum (The CJM) is excited to announce the election of Tom Kasten to Chair of The Museum’s Board of Trustees. A longtime supporter of The CJM’s exhibitions and programming, Kasten currently serves as a Vice Chair on the Board and has served as a Trustee since 2017. Kasten also served as the Chair of the Search Committee that brought Chad Coerver, the new Executive Director of the CJM, on board. Kasten will begin his term as Chair of the Board on January 1, 2022.
“The Contemporary Jewish Museum fills a pivotal role in the Bay Area’s arts ecosystem, and I am eager to help guide the Museum through its next phase in partnership with Chad Coerver,” said Tom Kasten. “As a museum committed to offering new perspectives on both the contemporary and the Jewish experience, it is crucial that our exhibitions and programming amplify not only Jewish voices, but also the diverse voices of all the people that make up our community. I look forward to furthering The Museum’s goals through this next phase, and to help it continue to fulfill its role as an inclusive space for our city.”
Tom Kasten was a Senior Executive with Levi Strauss & Co. for over 30 years, serving as President of a number of divisions and Executive Vice President of New Business Development. He has dedicated himself to the Jewish community in many ways, including serving as the Board Chair of the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund and of the Jewish Vocational Service. He currently serves on the boards of the North Peninsula Jewish Campus, Jewish Senior Living Group Foundation, Pilchuck Glass School, and Applied Medical, a private medical device company. In addition to his work with boards of local Jewish organizations, Kasten has played an active role in local government, serving twelve years on the Hillsborough Town Council, including two terms as Mayor and three terms as Police Commissioner. He was President of the Hillsborough Schools Foundation and has participated in regional associations and task forces devoted to improving housing, traffic, and emergency services.
Kasten has been actively engaged with The CJM since 2008, and is a loyal Circle of Friends Member. He and his wife Kendra reside in Hillsborough and are collectors of contemporary studio glass. Tom and Kendra have two adult children and two granddaughters.
For over thirty years The CJM has engaged audiences and artists in exploring contemporary perspectives on Jewish culture, history, art, and ideas. In 2008 The Museum opened a new building designed by internationally renowned architect Daniel Libeskind, providing a lively center where people of all ages and backgrounds can gather to experience art, share diverse perspectives, and engage in educational activities. Inspired by the Hebrew phrase L’Chaim (“to life”), the building is a physical embodiment of The CJM’s mission to bring together tradition and innovation in an exploration of the Jewish experience in the twenty-first century.
Major support for The CJM is generously provided by Craig Newmark Philanthropies; Bank of America; Suzanne and Elliott Felson; Grants for the Arts; Irving and Eleanor Jaffe Foundation; Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund; Maribelle and Stephen Leavitt; Joyce B. Linker; Alexandra O. Moses; The Bernard Osher Foundation; John Pritzker Family Fund; Dorothy R. Saxe; Seiger Family Foundation; Ruth S. Stein; and Roselyne C. Swig.
Major support for The CJM Helen Diller Institute is generously provided by The Helen Diller Family Foundation.