JFCS’ new building: Photographer David Sherman documented the process from start to finish

Photographer David Sherman has been a longtime supporter of JFCS and has taken photos at several of the agency’s events over the years. When JFCS began the process of completely renovating its new building in Golden Valley last year, it wanted to document the progress from start to finish. We hired David to photograph the building renovation from its beginning in January 2017 all the way to its opening in February 2018. David recently talked about what it was like to work on the project: 


What did you most enjoy about documenting the progress of JFCS’ new building?


Visiting the building every 10 days or so for a whole year, I was able to document all the changes taking place. I watched it go from a big empty shell to offices, desks, counseling rooms – spaces that have function. It was great seeing the building grow and metamorphose. I ended up gaining a personal connection to the building and the construction crew working on it.


The highlight for me was the personal experience of being able to watch the progress from start to finish. It was a beautiful thing. I am honored to have helped document a piece of history for the Minnesota Jewish community.


What is it like to see the building complete and filled with staff and clients? Is it hard to believe it’s the same building you were photographing just a few months ago?


It was amazing to see people working here the first day I visited after it had opened. Walking around, I had an ‘a-ha moment’ to see the space being used in the way it was intended.


You also worked on the photography for our Next Century Campaign Donor Recognition Wall that greets visitors in the lobby – are you happy with how the project turned out? (The Donor Wall features large color photographs that highlight JFCS’ mission and values.)


It was gratifying to be part of that project. It’s humbling to be able to illustrate the mission and the welcome-ness of JFCS in just a few images, which the Donor Wall conveys for everyone who comes through the doors.


Apart from these projects, you’ve supported JFCS at its Annual Benefit and in other ways over the years – why do you like to support JFCS?


We have an endowment at JFCS, the Gerda and Haskel Fishman Fund, which is named in memory of my wife’s parents, which we established with (wife) Julie’s siblings and their families. Julie’s mother, Gerda, received senior services from JFCS, so it’s an appropriate organization to house money that people donated in their memory. We saw firsthand the positive things JFCS does for its clients and it’s nice to be able to have the fund at JFCS to continue helping other people in their name.


Anything else you would like to add?


Sherman’s photos adorn the lunch room at JFCS’ new home, in addition to the Donor Recognition Wall.

It was a real honor to work on this project, documenting the construction of the new building and working on the Donor Wall. It was an incredible experience. Thank you for allowing me this opportunity to be of service in such a beautiful and meaningful way.


“Working with David on these projects was so much more than working with an excellent photographer,” said Lori Leavitt, JFCS Marketing/Communications Director. “David’s compassion, respect and understanding of the work JFCS does to serve our community shines through in every photo that he takes. We are grateful for his contribution to our new home!”


About David Sherman

David Sherman is a portrait, sports and editorial photographer with over 20 years of experience. As the NBA Team Photographer for professional basketball teams, the Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx, Sherman has produced striking imagery that has been published internationally. In addition, David’s adventurous spirit has taken him on professional assignments world-wide to China, Japan, England, France and Turkey. In 2010, David established Transfer of Memory, a touring exhibition of portraits and accompanying stories of Minnesota’s Holocaust Survivors.