I spent this Passover thinking about 18Doors’ beloved colleague, Jane Maine, z”l, who passed away before the holiday. I wanted to share memories of her with you, because she has been such an important part of 18Doors for the last 8.5 years, most recently as the Program Manager of the Jewish Clergy Officiation Referral Service.
Jane, seen above with her red Mini Coop, was everything you’d want in a colleague, and represents so many of the themes that show up in the Passover story: she was fearless, always speaking up for what she believed in. She believed in democracy and freedom, and regularly fought for both. She loved a good celebration, and dancing, and led with love and belonging.
Jane always went the extra mile in helping interfaith couples and families find rabbis or cantors to officiate at their weddings and lifecycle events. Her colleagues told me that if there wasn’t a rabbi or cantor available in a particular city to officiate at a couple’s wedding, Jane would look for nearby areas with cheap flights to the wedding location, and then look for clergy there. She was tireless in helping couples and families find officiants for important lifecycle moments, and last year alone, connected with more than 1,000 people looking for rabbis and cantors.
Jane worked side-by-side with Nicole Wasilus, the Director of Lifecycle Connections at 18Doors, and as Nicole wrote in a letter to the 500+ rabbis and cantors who make up the referral service, Jane was one of a kind:
Working together for the last four years, Jane and I formed a genuine friendship despite being forty years apart in age and at different stages of life. It was an absolute joy to work alongside her; she was my right-hand woman, always ready to lend a helping hand, and together, we transformed our referral service into a dynamic and impactful service for interfaith couples and Jewish clergy.
Jane leaves behind the legacy of not only her own beautiful interfaith family and the many friends and colleagues who loved her, but also, a Jewish clergy officiation referral service that has been transformed by her work. Last year alone, the service responded to requests from almost 4,000 people, for weddings, baby namings, funerals, conversions and other important lifecycle moments.
And of course, she has transformed all of us as well, who are better people for having known her, by watching and learning from her.
As Nicole wrote:
One of the many things I admired about Jane was her unwavering kindness, which she infused into every aspect of our work. She always made sure that folks received the very best experience through our service. It was so in her nature to go above and beyond for people that she wouldn’t even recognize that it was remarkable.
Jane asked that donations in her memory be made to 18Doors, or two other wonderful organizations, Music Haven and the American Cancer Society. I’d be grateful if you would consider joining me in donating in her honor and blessed memory.
Our deepest condolences to Jane’s husband Michael, her children Mandi (Scott) Jackson, and Seth (Melissa) Isaacs, all of her beautiful grandchildren and her brothers and sisters-in-law and nieces and nephews.
Zichrona Livracha. May Jane’s memory be a blessing.