Participant Bios

Arielle Aronoff is Teva’s Lead Educator and Camp Teva Manager. She is an avid sourdough bread baker and outdoor explorer. Arielle is a student of the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute and a life-long learner of how to be a positive member of the ecosystem. 

Robin Atlas lives in Seattle, WA where she is a mixed media artist who creates contemporary Jewish art/visual midrash. In Jan 2019, she became the president of the American Guild of Judaic Art (AGJA).

Arinne Braverman is the Founding Director of The Tribe and serves as the President of From Strength to Strength and Executive Director of Returning the Sparks. Arinne is an alumna of the Jewish Organizing Initiative, member of Ma’yan Tikvah, and mom to Noah (10) and Coby (8).

David Y. Chack, is on faculty at DePaul University/Chicago in Holocaust Theatre and Performance and Theatre of Identity including Jewish cultural theatre. He is Producing Artistic Director of ShPIeL-Performing Identity in Chicago and Artistic Director of Bunbury-ShPIeL Identity Theatre Project in Louisville, KY.

Bradley Caro Cook, Ed.D. is a social entrepreneur, civic leader, and Jewish educator. He strives to bring equity, inclusion, and universal Jewish wisdom in all of his community building endeavors. He currently serves as the executive director of CareerUpNow.org, chair of The City of Beverly Hills Entrepreneurship Incubator, and director of Growth Exponential, a tech company pioneering growth hacking methodologies for nonprofits.

Rabbi Jessy Dressin is the Director of Repair the World/Baltimore and continues to serve as a community rabbi with a unique lens to next generation behaviors and identification.  She is passionate about systems change, curious about the recipe to building a sustaining and vibrant Jewish people into the future and a passionate student of Jewish tradition and contemporary landscape.

Mati Engel is currently pursuing her Masters in Theology at the University of Chicago. She splits her time between her academic pursuits, her work as a chaplain at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and pursuing performance as well as community-based art, including performance art through Well of Wills. Born in England, Mati was Director of National Initiatives at the Embassy of Israel in Washington D.C. after having studied Israeli politics as a Dorot Fellow in Tel Aviv.

Dr. Shana Erenberg is the co-founder and Executive Director of Libenu, which provides housing, vocational training, recreational programs, and respite services for children and adults with disabilities. She is also the Chairman and Professor Emeritus of the Department of Education at the Blitstein Institute of Hebrew Theological College/Touro University in Chicago. 

Elly Faden is the founder of Healing Words from the Tree of Life. She discovered Kabbalah in the mid-1990’s and, since then, has been balancing the Sephirot to create a more peaceful and contented life for herself and for others.

David Franklin, LMSW, is an exhibit curator and co-founding creator of Jews, Rock and Roll Film and Exhibit.  David served as the director of Downtown Arts Development in New York City and there helped to convene The International Jewish Presenters Association Schmooze Culture Conference.  He also works as a family therapist in the New Haven area.

Rabbi Sherril Gilbert is co-founder/co-spiritual leader of Montreal Open Shul and Executive Director of ALEPH Canada. With a graduate degree in in Human Systems Intervention, Sherril spends time wondering about how to bring diverse people and communities together in meaningful ways at the intersection of spiritual growth and social justice.

Rabbi Justin Goldstein was ordained at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in 2011 and served congregations in Bangor, ME and Asheville, NC for a total of eight years. Currently, Justin serves as the Scholar-in-Residence of Yesod Farm+Kitchen, a small regenerative farm and educational space, in Fairview, NC.

Rabbi Andrew Hahn, Ph.D. has pioneered Kirtan in the Jewish world, offering communal call-and-response chant concerts and meditation seminars around the world. He has been teaching tai ch’i and related arts for more than forty years. He seamlessly combines chant, movement, meditation and text study into a positive, holistic experience. He is resident faculty at Clal in New York. KirtanRabbi.com 

Rabbi Denise Handlarski is the creator and spiritual leader of the online community SecularSynagogue.com.  She also serves the Oraynu Congregation for Humanistic Judaism in Toronto and serves families as “Jewish Doula”.

Stuart Himmelfarb is co-founder of B3, housed at NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. B3 is committed to Boomer engagement and changing the conversation about aging. He is also a board member of LabShul, exploring new paths to meaning.

Kohenet Ketzirah Lesser (HaMa’agelet), founder of Devotaj Sacred Arts, is a maker and teacher of the sacred arts.  She was part of the first cohort to receive ordination as a Kohenet, and was also ordained as a Celebrant of Becoming, a spiritual community she co-led in Washington DC from 2002-2012.

Casey Krebs is the founder of Latkes and Babka. She has been learning, researching and educating about food for over 20 years and is passionate sharing Jewish food experiences.  She is a food panel moderator, cooking classes instructor and the founder of a food manufacturing company.

Eliana Light envisions a joyful, vibrant, heart-centered Judaism that speaks to the soul and moves the spirit, reminding us that we all are One. She crafts ritual, writes music, trains educators, and consults with communities to bring this vision to life. (www.elianalight.com)

Danielle Levsky is the Social Media Manager for the Alliance of Jewish Theatre Festival and a post-Soviet Jewish clown. Her love of theatre-making and Jewish identity are inherently intertwined. Making art and making theatre is rooted in repairing the world and, therefore, rooted in political activism.

Asher Lovy is a survivor and the director of community organizing for ZA’AKAH, an organization dedicated to advocating for survivors of child sexual abuse in the Orthodox Jewish community. Having been actively involved in the fight to pass the Child Victims Act and Erin’s Law in New York, Asher is now pursuing a wider slate of legislation designed to protect children from sexual abuse and secure justice for survivors.

Richard McBee is a painter of Biblical subject matter and writer and lecturer on Jewish art.  He is a founding member and curator of the Jewish Art Salon. 

Deborah Meyer (she/her/hers) is the Founder and CEO of Moving Traditions, following a career dedicated to building change-making organizations focused on gender and the Jewish community. Deborah serves on the Covenant Foundation Board and she credits her commitment to feminism, social justice, and Jewish life to her involvement as a teen in Habonim Dror.

Shani Mink is a seasoned farmer, experiential educator and a co-founder and executive director of the Jewish Farmer Network. She is passionate about the agricultural wisdom of the Jewish tradition and its potential to build a better food system for all.

Rabbi Mira Rivera, the first Filipina-American Rabbi to be ordained at The Jewish Theological Seminary, serves Romemu in New York City as Jewish Emergent Network Rabbinic Fellow and Board Certified Chaplain. She is the co-chair of the Rabbinical Council of Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFREJ) and instrumental in growing Ammud: The Jews of Color Torah Academy. She came to New York to dance with the Martha Graham Dance Company and Ensemble under Artistic Director Yuriko Kikuchi.

Yossi Rosenberg, co-founded Kugel along with Simone Weichselbaum in 2018. Based in New York City, Kugel is a community-building organization aimed at uniting young and mid-career Jewish professionals who don’t fit into a box, as far as observance level. Yossi has a background in marketing for media start-ups, which has helped to grow Kugel’s audience. Kugel uses shabbat programming to promote both traditional Judaism and diversity.

Jacob Ruden is a Neuroscience PhD Candidate at Vanderbilt University. He is the co-founder of Jewsic City Shabbat, a monthly musical Shabbat service and dinner hosted in homes across Nashville, TN.

Rabbi David Shneyer is a Jewish educator, musician, organizer based in Rockville, MD.   He is a co-founder of the New Brunswick Havurah (1969); Fabrangen Jewish Free Culture Center (1971); the founder of the Jewish Folks Arts Society (1977); a founder of Kehila Chadasha (a havurah,1978); YACHAD; Am Kolel Judaic Resource Center and Jewish Renewal Community (1990); the Maalot Seminary (1990); Jews United for Justice (1998); and Sanctuary Retreat Center (2006).

Rabbi Rachel Short is the founder of Ahavat Aina, the first and only Jewish cultural community center and synagogue on the Big Island of Hawai’i. Before she became a rabbi, she worked as a Holistic Healer, Reiki Master Teacher and Stand Up Paddleboard Yoga Leader. She incorporates all of those practices in her rabbinate, often rapping her sermons and including yoga, self-healing and meditation in her services. 

Kohenet Bekah Starr is a Sacred Artist exploring connections between Hebrew Mysticism and the Divine Feminine. Her artwork, workshops, and writing have been featured around the world. She lives with her amazingly supportive husband and their two inspiring children on the lands of the Wappinger First Nation people, also known as the beautiful Hudson Valley of New York.    (www.BekahStarrArt.com)

Rabbi Eddie Sukol is the founder of The Shul: An Innovative Center for Jewish Outreach in Cleveland, OH.  Ordained by HUC-JIR, he previously served as the Hillel Director at Ohio University, the Director of Pastoral Care at the Montefiore Home and NCJW Hospice and as a congregational rabbi. 

Rabbi Sarah Tasman serves the needs of individuals, couples and families who don’t belong to a synagogue through the Tasman Center for Jewish Creativity. She also works with private clients for spiritual coaching and leads workshops and gatherings that integrate Jewish mindfulness, meditation, creative expression.

Anike Tourse is a multimedia maker who has penned and performed one woman shows internationally, written for television series One Life to Live, and Girlfriends, and is the writer and director of award-winning short film America: I Too, now in distribution with New Day Films. Anike’s production company, Mixed Operations, is now producing America’s Family in conjunction with the Coalition for Humane Immigrant Rights (CHIRLA) and her projects in development include a documentary project about the history and rise of the Jews of Color Movement in the United States. 

Katie Vogel is the founder of Havayah, Cincinnati’s only intentional, egalitarian community and the editor of The Internet Shtetl, Havayah’s digital newsletter which reaches more than 2,000 individuals every week. She’s a retired newspaper editor and former member of the Cincinnati Enquirer’s editorial board. She now manages operations for a startup addressing the automation needs of the aerospace industry. 

Rabbi Larry Sernovitz is the founding rabbi and executive director of Nafshenu, a spiritual community/synagogue in Cherry Hill, NJ. He is an educator, a student, an innovator, a social justice advocate, and a believer in the future of Jewish life in America.

Lauren Schreiber Sasaki is a Montreal-born, Toronto-based arts and culture programmer who, having worked in the music and theatre worlds for the last 15 years, recently turned her focus to Jewish community.  She is excited to be leaning in to her roots while investing in her community, and raising multi-racial, multi-cultural and multi-faith kids with her partner in Canada’s largest urban center. 

Yoshi Silverstein is Founder and Executive Director at Mitsui Collective, a new Jewish startup building resilient community through embodied Jewish practice with a multiracial and justice lens. Yoshi was most recently Director of the JOFEE Fellowship at Hazon through which he supported the growth and leadership of over 60 emerging professionals working in the realm of Jewish relationship to land, food, culture, climate, and community.

Caleb von Schloer was born in Thailand and spent time in his youth in the Philippines and in Spain. Identifying as genderfluid, he moved to LA several years ago, seeking to deepen his Jewish roots. He currently lives an observant Jewish life in Monsey, NY but, as an aspiring pioneer, he is planning to re-locate to the land-based, Alliance Community Reboot in Southern New Jersey in the near future.

Sarah Weinberg is a professional in business operations who enjoys applying her expertise to programming and community building initiatives within the Jewish community. She and her husband, Daniel, serve as two of the gabbaisat Kol Sasson Congregation in Skokie, IL where you can find them learning, having fun, and making music with their three children.

Melanie Weiss is the Director of Summer Programs at the Center for Small Town Jewish Life. A native of New York, she loves living in Maine with her wife and daughters.

Rachel Weinstein White is the Founder and Executive Director of Fig Tree, an NYC-based independent Jewish education program for kids from interfaith, interracial and/ or secular backgrounds- or simply families seeking a Hebrew School alternative. Rachel lives in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn with her partner, three sons, three chickens, and two cats. 

Rabbi Bridget Wynne was ordained by HUC-JIR. Before attending rabbinical school, she worked as a community organizer, which gave her the perspective and skills needed to meet people where they are and help them create the Jewish lives and connections they choose. She founded and directs Jewish Gateways, an open community in the San Francisco Bay Area, for wondering and wandering Jews and their family and friends.

Dr. Lori Ahava Wynters directs Wild Seeds of Torah, an inclusive, artist/activist, earth based Jewish wisdom tradition community drawing from Torah, Zohar, intersectional feminist, critical race and art practices, and queer theologies. Wild Seeds of Torah seeks to reclaim our ancestral traditions, untold stories/songs/prayers of the marginalized, healing our individual and collective bodies, intergenerational trauma for collective liberation. She is on the faculty of Goddard College and SUNY New Paltz and currently studies at JTS.

Cat Zavis is the Executive Director of the Network of Spiritual Progressives and the Co-Editor of Tikkun magazine. She is also a rabbinic student in the Aleph: Alliance for Jewish Renewal rabbinic ordination program.

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