Jenkintown woman named executive director of Tikvah

Abby Gilbert, 59, of Jenkintown has been named the new executive director of Tikvah, a Philadelphia nonprofit that helps adults with with mental illnesses.

From the Jewish Exponent:

Tikvah, established in 1990, works with adults of all ages in their “social, educational, employment and spiritual development,” according to the news release about Gilbert’s hiring. The nonprofit’s president, Neen Davis, felt Gilbert was qualified because of her past experiences. “She had a good understanding of who we were and what we’re trying to accomplish,” Davis said.

Gilbert’s goal is to increase the active membership of Tikvah. Although a recent study showed that while 33% of Jewish households in the counties around and including Philadelphia had at least one member diagnosed with a mental illness, Tikvah has only about 80 active members.

Glibert has a history in expanding existing programs. From 1985 to 1998, first as youth director and then program director at Congregation Beth Or in Montgomery County, Gilbert’s helped Congregation Beth Or grow from 350 families in 1985 to 850 by 1998.