For the majority of his adult life, Matt Brooks has been involved in a leadership role within the Republican Jewish Coalition, an organization that seeks to enhance ties between the Jewish community and the Republican Party. Although he’d been active since the 1980s, never had Matt and the RJC experienced as consequential a period than this past weekend, when their annual leadership meeting in Las Vegas featured a star-studded lineup, which included addresses by President Trump and Vice President Pence.
Once the dust settled, Ami spoke with Brooks about the experience.
Every year you get some really big names to your annual summit but have you ever had the president and vice president before in the same year?
No. We have not. First of all, we’ve never had the president at our Vegas conference. We have been honored to have the vice president before. It’s certainly the first time we’ve had both. It’s pretty unprecedented for any organization to have both the president and vice president not only address the organization but literally fly across the country to do it. So we are humbled and we are honored and thrilled that we had an opportunity to say thank you to this incredible president and incredible vice president.
Q: You’ve been doing this for almost 30 years, correct?
A: Thirty-one, but who’s counting?
Q: And this is the first time you pulled this off. What would you say changed this year that made you win the jackpot?
A: I think this is the culmination of a lot of hard work by our staff and by our lay leadership to help make this organization into what it is today. And it’s a testament to the RJC that the president and vice president and all the other speakers…the number of governors and senators and congressmen we had was unbelievable. I think it has everything to do with how the RJC has evolved into a major impactful organization in the Jewish community and the reputation we built for ourselves.