Conference on Teaching Rabbinic Literature
- Charlotte Abramson (Jewish Theological Seminary)
- Joel A. Alter (JCDS, Boston’s Jewish Community Day School, Watertown, MA)
- Yair Altshuler (Maimonides School, Brookline, MA)
- Sharon Cohen Anisfeld (Hebrew College Rabbinical School)
- Stephen Hazan Arnoff (14th Street Y of The Educational Alliance)
- Michael Balinsky (Florence Melton Adult Mini-School, Chicago)
- Mara Benjamin (Yale University)
- Jethro Berkman (Temple Aliyah, Needham, MA)
- Rahel Berkovits (Pardes Institute for Jewish Studies, Jerusalem)
- Beth Berkowitz (Jewish Theological Seminary)
- Jack Bieler (Kemp Mill Synagogue, Silver Spring, MD)
- Scott Bolton (Reuben Gittelman Hebrew Day School)
- Marc Z. Brettler (Brandeis University)
- Dan Brosgol (The Rashi School)
- Michael Chernick (HUC-JIR, New York)
- Shai Cherry (American Jewish University, LA)
- Aryeh Cohen (American Jewish University, LA)
- Rhonda Cohen (Hastings Public Schools, Hastings, NY)
- Shaye J. D. Cohen (Harvard University)
- Reuven Cohn (Maimonides School)
- Jacob Cytryn (Brandeis University)
- Gail Zaiman Dorph (Mandel Foundation)
- Yaron Eliav (University of Michigan)
- Ruth Satinover Fagen (Abraham Joshua Heschel School, NY)
- Sharon Feiman-Nemser (Brandeis University)
- Susan P. Fendrick (Brandeis University)
- Shawn Fields-Meyer (Milken Community High School)
- Charlotte Elisheva Fonrobert (Stanford University)
- Steven Fraade (Yale University)
- Chaim Galfand (Perelman Jewish Day School)
- Michael Gillis (Hebrew University, Jerusalem)
- Elliot Goldberg (Chicagoland Jewish High School, IL)
- Elyse Goldstein (Kolel: the Adult Centre for Liberal Jewish Learning, Toronto, Canada)
- Jay Harris (Harvard University)
- Pinchas Hayman (Bonayich Educational Services)
- Nathaniel Helfgot (Yeshivat Chovevei Torah)
- Avital Campbell Hochstein (Shalom Hartman Institute, Jerusalem)
- Elie Holzer (Bar Ilan University)
- Jane Kanarek (Hebrew College Rabbinical School)
- Lawrence Kaplan (McGill University)
- Elliot Kaplowitz (Brandeis University Hillel)
- Susan M. Kardos (Combined Jewish Philanthropies)
- Judith Kates (Hebrew College Rabbinical School)
- Alvan Kaunfer (Temple Emanu-El, Providence)
- Orit Kent (Brandeis University)
- Reuven Kimelman (Brandeis University)
- Aryeh Klapper (Gann Academy)
- David Kraemer (Jewish Theological Seminary)
- Yehuda Kurtzer (Harvard University)
- Jenny Labendz (Jewish Theological Seminary)
- Gail Labovitz (American Jewish University, LA)
- Ruth Langer (Boston College)
- Marjorie Lehman (Jewish Theological Seminary)
- Marcie Lenk (Harvard University)
- Dov Lerea (Abraham Joshua Heschel School, NY)
- Sarra Lev (Reconstructionist Rabbinical College)
- Judd Kruger Levingston (Perelman Jewish Day School)
- Jon A. Levisohn (Brandeis University)
- Ethan Linden (Camp Ramah of New England)
- Dov Linzer (Yeshivat Chovevei Torah)
- Shari L. Lowin (Stonehill College)
- Benjamin Mann (Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan)
- Claudia Marbach (JCDS, Boston’s Jewish Community Day School)
- Evyatar Marienberg (Jewish Theological Seminary)
- Vivie Mayer (Reconstructionist Rabbinical College)
- Karen G. Reiss Medwed (University of Pennsylvania)
- Joshua Moss (American Hebrew Academy)
- Robin Nafshi (Rimon: Collaborative Jewish Learning in MetroWest)
- Jack Nahmod (Beth Tfiloh Dahan High School, MD)
- George Nudell (Congregation Beth Israel, Scotch Plains, NJ)
- Michael Paley (UJA-Federation of NY)
- Aaron Panken (HUC-JIR, New York)
- Carl Perkins (Temple Aliyah, Needham, MA)
- Ellen Pildis (The Rashi School)
- Helen Plotkin (Swarthmore College)
- Daniel Reifman (Midreshet Lindenbaum)
- Gidon Rothstein (HAFTR, Long Island, NY)
- Jeffrey Rubenstein (New York University)
- Alieza Salzberg (Matan / Bar Ilan University)
- Benjamin Samuels (Congregation Shaarei Tefillah, Newton, MA)
- Michael Satlow (Brown University)
- Jeffrey Schein (Siegel College, Cleveland)
- Neal Scheindlin (Milken Community High School)
- Solomon Schimmel (Hebrew College)
- Lisa Schlaff (SAR High School, Riverdale, NY)
- Lee S. Shulman (Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching)
- Deena Sigel (University of London)
- Moriah SimonHazani (University of Pennsylvania)
- Shawn SimonHazani (Perelman Jewish Day School, Philadelphia)
- Alex Sinclair (Shalom Hartman Institute)
- Moshe Sokolow (Yeshiva University)
- Bradley Solmsen (Brandeis University)
- Jeffrey Spitzer (Gann Academy)
- David Starr (Hebrew College)
- Elana Stein (Columbia University)
- Jonah Chanan Steinberg (Hebrew College Rabbinical School)
- David Stern (University of Pennsylvania)
- Ethan Tucker (Mechon Hadar)
- Avraham Walfish (Herzog College, Alon Shvut, Israel)
- Dvora Weisberg (HUC-JIR, Los Angeles)
- Barry Wimpfheimer (Northwestern University)
- Elyse Winick (Koach, United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism)
- Lisa Karp Wurtele (Tehiyah Day School)
Charlotte Abramson serves as the project director for The Jewish Day School Standards and Benchmarks Project, a project of the Melton Research Center for Jewish Education of the Jewish Theological Seminary. The Standards and Benchmarks Project is a professional development program designed to improve the teaching and learning of TaNaKH in community, Reform and Conservative day schools by applying standards as the basis for developing curriculum. Prior to her current work, she served in several capacities in Jewish day school administration and as a teacher of Tanakh and Rabbinics.
Joel A. Alter serves as Rav Beit HaSefer and Assistant Head of School at JCDS, Boston’s Jewish Community Day School, where he also teaches rabbinics in the middle school. Trained as a rabbi and Jewish educator at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, he has previously served Washington's Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School and, as a member of the founding team, Baltimore's Shoshana S. Cardin School. He enjoyed several years of participation in the Hartman Institute's TICHON program, where he cultivated his interest in a theological and values-oriented approach toward Jewish texts.
Yair Altshuler is the principal of the Middle and Upper Schools and head of the administrative team at Maimonides School in Brookline, MA. He received an M.A at Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Prior to his current position, Rabbi Altshuler was a principal at Ohr Torah Ramot Yeshiva Middle School, and pedagogical instructor at the Lipshitz Academic College for Teacher Training in Jerusalem. His fields of expertise are formal and informal education, teacher education and Talmud teaching.
Sharon Cohen Anisfeld is dean of the Rabbinical School at Hebrew College. She assumed this position 1-1/2 years ago after working for 17 years in a variety of transdenominational Jewish communities and pluralistic Jewish educational contexts. Previously a Hillel rabbi at Tufts, Yale, and Harvard, she is committed to bringing classical Jewish sources to bear on contemporary questions of personal meaning and social justice. Rabbi Cohen Anisfeld has served on the summer faculty of the Bronfman Youth Fellowships in Israel since 1993, and is the co-editor of two collections of women's writing about Passover, The Women's Passover Companion and The Women's Seder Sourcebook. She graduated from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 1990.
Stephen Hazan Arnoff, Executive Director of the 14th Street Y of The Educational Alliance since October 2007, writes on art, text, religion, culture, and education for academic and popular publications and has taught and lectured widely in Israel, Europe, and North America. He has served as Managing Editor of Zeek: A Jewish Journal of Thought and Culture, was a Jerusalem Fellow at the Mandel Leadership Institute, and is currently a doctoral candidate at the Jewish Theological Seminary in midrash.
Michael Balinsky is Director of Faculty Development for the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School. He previously served as the director of Hillel at Northwestern University. He has taught in many adult education settings. Rabbi Balinsky is a graduate of Yeshiva University, where he also received rabbinic ordination.
Mara Benjamin is Visiting Lecturer in Religious Studies and Judaic Studies at Yale University, and Visiting Lecturer in Judaic and Near Eastern Studies at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst. In addition, she is the first full-year scholar-in-residence at the Society for the Advancement of Judaism in New York City. She is an alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship and holds a doctorate in modern Jewish thought from Stanford University. Her book on Franz Rosenzweig and scripture is forthcoming from Cambridge University Press.
Jethro Berkman is a graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, where he was twice awarded the Ann Pinkenson Prize for excellence in the study of rabbinic literature and civilization. While at RRC, he served as the Jewish advisor at Swarthmore College. He is currently the Director of Community Education at Temple Aliyah in Needham, MA.
Rahel Berkovits teaches Mishnah, Talmud, and halakha at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. She has spent many years studying Talmud in both traditional and academic frameworks at such institutions as Midreshet Lindenbaum, the Shalom Hartman Institute, and Hebrew University. She has taught Torah she’b’al peh to middle school students in the Israeli public school system, and Jewish Studies in a day school, a supplementary school, and to adults in the US. Ms. Berkovits lectures widely on halakha and women’s ritual practice in both the US and Israel, and has published articles on the topic, most recently on the CD Jewish Women: A Comprehensive Historical Encyclopedia. She is the editor of Ta Shma, the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance’s upcoming Halakhic Study Guide Series.
Beth Berkowitz is Assistant Professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She is the author of Execution and Invention: Death Penalty Discourse in Early Rabbinic and Christian Cultures (Oxford University Press, 2006). For the academic year 2007-2008, she is a fellow at the Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, where she is working on her current research project, “And in Their Laws You Shall Not Go”: Anxieties of Identity in Bible Reading, which explores how Jews and Christians have constructed religious identities through their readings of Leviticus 18:3.
Jack Bieler is Rabbi of the Kemp Mill Synagogue in Silver Spring, MD and on the Judaic studies faculty of the Melvin J. Berman Hebrew Academy in Rockville, Maryland. He has been an administrator and Talmud teacher in day schools for over 30 years. He has written extensively on the philosophy of Modern Orthodox day school education.
Scott Bolton is Head of School at Reuben Gittelman Hebrew Day School in New City, New York. He has previously served as Head of School and in various administrative capacities at day schools, as well as instructor in Bible and Halakhah. He runs a Talmud and Visual Arts Commentaries project called Gemoranut, and he is launching Beit Midrash Tikkun, where text study and social action will be integrated. He was ordained at the Ziegler School of Rabbinical Studies.
Marc Z. Brettler is the Dora Golding Professor of Biblical Studies and former chair of the Department of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University. He has also taught in various adult Jewish education settings, including the Wexner Heritage Program, the innovative Me’ah program in Boston, and has served as scholar-in-residence for the Foundation for Jewish Studies in Washington DC. A graduate of Brandeis University, he has published and lectured widely on metaphor and the Bible, the nature of biblical historical texts, and gender issues and the Bible. Dr. Brettler is co-editor of the Jewish Study Bible, published by Oxford University Press in 2004 and recipient of a National Jewish Book Award. The author and editor of numerous books, his most recent book is How to Read the Bible (Jewish Publication Society). He recently returned from a sabbatical teaching and researching in Israel, England, China, and Japan.
Dan Brosgol is the Jewish Programs Coordinator at The Rashi School in Newton, Massachusetts. He teaches eighth-grade Jewish Studies and the middle school Mishnah elective, leads tefilah for grades 1-8, and coordinates all school-to-school Israel programming between Rashi and the Leo Baeck School in Haifa. He was previously the Associate Director of the Prozdor Hebrew High School at Hebrew College, where he still teaches three days a week. He has over a decade of experience in a variety of Jewish educational settings, including camp, day school, religious school, Israel trips, and other Jewish travel experiences. He is a graduate of Brandeis University, and received his Master's Degree in Jewish Education and Certificate in Day School Education from Hebrew College.
Michael Chernick is the Deutsch Family Professor of Jewish Jurisprudence and Social Justice at Hebew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He received his ordination and PhD in Talmud from Yeshiva University. He teaches in academic and adult Jewish educational programs, and he has published books and articles on rabbinic literature directed to the constituencies who study and teach in those settings. He founded the summer Judaic studies program at Kibbutz Yahel, the first Reform kibbutz, and organized and led several UAHC (now URJ) study kallot in Israel.
Shai Cherry has a PhD in Jewish Thought from Brandeis University, where his early research focused on creation and evolution in Jewish thought. He has served as Mellon Assistant Professor of Jewish Thought at Vanderbilt University, and taught rabbinics and modern Jewish thought at Hebrew College in Boston. He is currently an adjunct professor at UCLA and at American Jewish University’s Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, where he is also studying for rabbinic ordination. His writings have appeared in numerous publications including Aleph: Historical Studies in Science and Judaism and Tiferet: A Journal of Spiritual Literature. His works include “Crisis Management via Biblical Interpretation: Fundamentalism, Modern Orthodoxy and Genesis” (in Jewish Tradition and the Challenge of Evolution, ed. Geoffrey Cantor and Marc Swetlitz, University of Chicago Press, 2006). His first book is Torah Through Time: Understanding Bible Commentary from the Rabbinic Period to Modern Time (Jewish Publication Society, 2007).
Aryeh Cohen is Associate Professor of Rabbinic Literature at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies of the American Jewish University (formerly the University of Judaism). He wrote the Rabbinics curriculum for Ziegler and has, at one time or another, taught most of the courses therein.He is the author of Rereading Talmud: Gender, Law and the Poetics of Sugyot, and Beginning/Again: Toward a Hermenuetic of Jewish Texts. He is currently working on a commentary to Tractate Shabbat for The Feminist Commentary to the Talmud, to be edited by Tal Ilan and underwritten by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (German Research Foundation), and Justice in the City: Rabbinic Representations of the Just City.
Rhonda Cohen serves as the K-12 Director of Curriculum and Instruction for Hastings Public Schools located in Westchester County, New York. She has also worked in Jewish education for 17 years, teaching Hebrew and religious studies to adults and children, and serving as an education consultant for curriculum development and teacher training. Her research interests center on the use of records of practice as a medium for teacher learning. Dr. Cohen holds master's degrees in Educational Administration and Policy from the University of Michigan and in Elementary Education from Lesley College, and completed her Ph.D. in Teaching and Teacher Education at the University of Michigan.
Shaye J. D. Cohen is the Director of the Center for Jewish Studies and Littauer Professor of Hebrew Language and Literature at Harvard University. He is the author of The Beginnings of Jewishness: Boundaries, Varieties, Uncertainties (1999), Why Aren’t Jewish Women Circumcised? (2005), and many other studies of ancient and medieval Judaism. He is currently working on a new translation of the Mishnah as well as a history of Mishnaic law.
Reuven Cohn teaches rabbinic texts for Hebrew College Online, the Me'ah adult education program, and Ma'ayan, all in the Boston area. He also teaches Jewish history at the Maimonides School. He received rabbinic ordination and an MS in Jewish Education from Yeshiva University, an MA in Jewish Studies from Harvard University, and a JD from Yale Law School.
Jacob Cytryn is a doctoral candidate in Jewish Studies and Education at Brandeis University, where he serves as a Research Assistant at the Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education. A Wexner Graduate Fellow, Jacob has a B.A. in Classical Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and an M.A. in Talmud and Rabbinics from the Jewish Theological Seminary. He also serves as the year-round Program Director for Camp Ramah in Wisconsin.
Gail Zaiman Dorph is the director of the Mandel Foundation’s Teacher Educator Institute (MTEI), an innovative two-year professional development program for senior Jewish educators, and a consultant to communal organizations, universities, and schools on the creation of professional programs for principals and teachers. She is an associate editor of the Journal of Jewish Education, and has published several works in the field of teacher education. Her most recent article, co-authored with Susan Stodolsky and Wendy Rosov, describing the impact of sustained professional development programs in two Jewish congregational schools, will appear this spring in the Journal of Religious Education. Before working at the Mandel Foundation, Dr. Dorph directed the Fingerhut School of Education at the American Jewish University (formerly the University of Judaism), and has also taught at the DeLeT program at Brandeis University and at Hebrew Union College.
Yaron Eliav is the Jean and Samuel Frankel Associate Professor of Rabbinic Literature and Jewish History of Late Antiquity at the University of Michigan. He draws on talmudic, early Christian, and classic literatures, as well as on archaeology, in order to study the multi-faceted cultural environment of Roman Palestine with emphasis on the encounter between Jews and Greco-Roman culture. His latest book is God's Mountain: The Temple Mount in Time, Space, and Memory (The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2005).
Ruth Satinover Fagen is Department Chair of Limudei Qodesh and Faculty Educator at the Abraham Joshua Heschel High School in New York. Prior to coming to Heschel, she was the founding director of HaSha’ar, a fellowship program that prepares young adults to teach in Jewish day schools.
Sharon Feiman-Nemser is the Mandel Professor of Jewish Education at Brandeis University and director of the Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education. She has written extensively about mentoring, new teacher induction, teacher learning and the curriculum and pedagogy of teacher education. A scholar and practitioner of teacher education, she has co-founded and directed innovative programs that serve as sites for research on learning to teach at the University of Chicago, at Michigan State University, and now at Brandeis.
Susan P. Fendrick is Senior Research Associate for the Initiative on Bridging Scholarship and Pedagogy at the Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education at Brandeis University, and a member of the planning team for this conference. She graduated from Brown University and received rabbinic ordination at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and is an alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship program. She has been a teacher of adult Jewish education in a variety of settings, and served as a member of the bibliodrama faculty along with Peter Pitzele (with whom she trained) at the Institute for Contemporary Midrash. She has served as founding editor of SocialAction.com and managing editor of MyJewishLearning.com. Her writing has appeared in numerous publications including The Women's Torah Commentary and The Women's Haftarah Commentary, The Women's Seder Sourcebook, the haggadah A Night of Questions, the journals Sh'ma and Living Text, and in several online magazines.
Shawn Fields-Meyer serves as Rabbi-in-Residence at the Milken Community High School, and as Instructor in Bible at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, both in Los Angeles. She is founder and Executive Director of Ozreinu, a network of Torah-study/spiritual support groups for Jewish parents of special-needs children. She is co-author of the book A Day Apart: Shabbat at Home, a practical and spiritual guide to the home rituals of Shabbat.
Charlotte Elisheva Fonrobert is Associate Professor of Religious Studies and Co-Director of the Taube Center for Jewish Studies at Stanford University. She teaches classes on rabbinic Judaism and on biblical interpretation in Judaism and Christianity. Her most recent publication is The Cambridge Companion to the Talmud and Rabbinic Literature, co-edited with Prof. Martin Jaffee.
Steven Fraade is the Mark Taper Professor of the History of Judaism at Yale University. His research, writing, and teaching focuses on the history and literature of Judaism of Hellenistic and Roman times, with particular attention to questions of scriptural interpretation and legal rhetoric in the texts of the Dead Sea Scrolls and early rabbinic Judaism.
Chaim Galfand is the School Rabbi for Perelman Jewish Day School's Forman Center and Stern Center in the Philadelphia suburbs, working with students, parents, and faculty. Ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he was a Wexner Graduate Fellow, he also holds a law degree from Penn Law School. He has taught in camps, schools, congregations, and adult education settings.
Michael Gillis is a member of the faculty of the Melton Centre for Jewish Education at the Hebrew University. His work is concerned with the ways in which different paradigms of reading rabbinic literature can be a resource for teaching and curriculum. He served for five years as the head of education of Revivim, an honors program for the preparation of teachers of Jewish studies in Israeli non-religious high schools.
Elliot Goldberg is the Director of Religious Life at the Chicagoland Jewish High School. He was awarded a Wexner Graduate Fellowship to study at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America (JTSA), where he received a master’s degree in Jewish education and rabbinic ordination. Rabbi Goldberg completed the Senior Educators Program at the Melton Centre for Jewish Education at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and the Day School Leadership Training Institute at the Davidson School at JTSA.
Elyse Goldstein is the Director and founding rabbi of Kolel: The Adult Centre for Liberal Jewish Learning, the first liberal Jewish adult education center in Canada and one of a few in North America. She speaks and consults widely on adult Jewish education. Her numerous articles have appeared in both scholarly and popular journals. She is the author of ReVisions: Seeing Torah through a Feminist Len and Seek Her Out, and editor of The Women’s Torah Commentary, and The Women’s Haftarah Commentary. She is the 2005 recipient of the Covenant Award for Exceptional Jewish Educators.
Jay Harris is the Harry Austryn Wolfson Professor of Jewish Studies at Harvard University. He has a Ph.D. in Religion from Columbia University, and an MA in Talmud from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He taught for a number of years at both institutions. He is the author of How Do We Know This? Midrash and the Fragmentation of Modern Judaism, among other works.
Pinchas Hayman received rabbinical ordination at the Rabbi Yitzchak Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University (YU), and an MA in Talmudics and Semitic Languages from the Bernard Revel Graduate School at YU, where he also completed his doctorate. Among other positions, he has served on the faculty of department of Talmud at Bar Ilan University, as head of the Oral Tradition unit of the Teacher’s Diploma program of the School of Education at Bar Ilan, and as the Director of the Joseph H. Lookstein Center for Jewish Education in the Diaspora. Rabbi Dr. Hayman is the founder of Bonayich Educational Services, which is engaged in the production of curricula, and teaching and learning materials for the teaching of Mishnah and Talmud in primary, secondary and post-secondary educational institutions. He consults on a fulltime basis with over 150 educational institutions in Israel and around the world.
Nathaniel Helfgot is chair of the Bible and Jewish Thought departments at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School in New York City. He has published numerous essays in English and Hebrew in the areas of Bible and exegesis, and is the editor of Community, Covenant and Committment: Selected Letters and Communications of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (Toras HoRav Foundation/Ktav Publishing Co.). Rabbi Helfgot taught in various yeshiva high schools for 15 years, and is an occasional consultant to schools throughout the country. He is an alumnus of the Mandel Jerusalem Fellows program.
Avital Campbell Hochstein is a fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem and leads the Jewish Studies Bet Midrash at their new Midrasha LeBanot Girls' High School. She heads the Kollel program at the Pardes Institute in Jerusalem. She has been involved in adult education, mainly in teaching Talmud, for the last 15 years. Her book Women Out, Women In: The Place of Women in Midrash with Prof. Chana Safrai, was published recently in the Yahadut Kan VeAchshav series of Yediyot Achronot Press.
Elie Holzer is an Assistant Professor in the School of Education at Bar Ilan University and a Senior Research Associate at the Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education in Brandeis. He holds a PhD in Jewish thought from Hebrew University as well as rabbinical ordination. He has taught in high schools and a variety of Jewish adult learning institutions in Israel and in the US, as well as in a yeshivat hesder. He also works as a consultant in the field of professional development in Jewish education. His current fields of research and publication focus on the conceptualization and pedagogical application of text study and hevruta learning in light of philosophical hermeneutics; the connection between professional development of teachers, text study and hevruta learning; and philosophy of religious education.
Jane Kanarek is Assistant Professor of Rabbinics at Hebrew College, where she teaches Talmud and halakha in the Rabbinical School. An alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, she received a B.A. from Brown University, rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary, and a Ph.D. from the University of Chicago. During the summer, she is a co-director of the Northwoods Kollel, a full-time learning program at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin.
Lawrence Kaplan is Professor of Rabbinics and Jewish Philosophy in the Department of Jewish Studies of McGill University. He specializes and has published widely in the areas of both medieval and modern Jewish thought. He is perhaps best known for his translation from the Hebrew of Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik's classic work, Halakhic Man. His study "Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik and Halakhic Man" appeared in the recent Cambridge Companion to Modern Jewish Philosophy.
Elliot Kaplowitz serves as co-Director of the Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus, and Advisor to the Orthodox Community at Brandeis University. He received his rabbinic ordination from Yeshivat Chovevei Torah. He received a combined BA/MA from Brandeis in Near Eastern and Judaic studies, and worked as the Iyyun Fellow at Hillel’s International Center in Washington, DC. He has taught in a number of settings, including the JCC in Manhattan and a number of synagogues across the country.
Susan M. Kardos is the Director of the Initiative for Day School Excellence at the Combined Jewish Philanthropies of Greater Boston and a research affiliate at the Project on the Next Generation of Teachers at Harvard University. Dr. Kardos is the author of over a dozen articles and chapters about teacher culture, school improvement and school leadership and the author of “ ‘Not Bread Alone’: Clandestine Schooling and Resistance in the Warsaw Ghetto during the Holocaust” (Harvard Educational Review, 2002) and co-author of Finders and Keepers: Helping New Teachers Survive and Thrive in Our Schools (Jossey Bass, 2004).
Judith Kates, Professor of Jewish Women's Studies at Hebrew College, has been teaching Tanakh, midrash and parshanut in Hebrew College's transdenominational Rabbinical School since its inception. She has taught Tanakh and midrash in many programs of adult Jewish education since 1987. Among her publications are two essays on rabbinic midrash in Scrolls of Love: Ruth and the Song of Songs, eds. Lesleigh Cushing Stahlberg and Peter S. Hawkins (Fordham University Press, 2006).
Alvan Kaunfer is a Rabbi at Temple Emanu-El in Providence R.I., and is an Adjunct Instructor in Jewish Education at the Rabbinical School of Boston’s Hebrew College and at the Davidson School of the Jewish Theological Seminary. He completed his doctorate in Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America; his dissertation was on teaching midrash in the day school setting.
Orit Kent is co-director of the Beit Midrash Research Project at the Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education at Brandeis University, where she also teaches in the DeLeT program. She is an alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship program and is completing her doctorate in Judaic Studies and Education at Brandeis, focusing on hevruta learning. Her research interests also include the teaching and learning of Jewish texts, teacher professional development, and alternative leadership paradigms. She has taught in a wide variety of educational contexts and worked as an educational consultant in the Boston area.
Reuven Kimelman is a Professor of Classical Judaica at Brandeis University. Previously, he was Joseph Shier Distinguished Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Toronto, and Five College Professor of Judaic Studies at Amherst College. He has also taught at Mount Holyoke, Smith, Trinity and Williams colleges as well as at the Jewish Theological Seminary and the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He is the author of the Hebrew work, The Mystical Meaning Of “Lekhah Dodi” and “Kabbalat Shabbat”, and three audio books, including The Moral Meaning of The Bible: The What, How, and Why of Biblical Ethics, as well as The Hidden Poetry of The Jewish Prayerbook: The What, How, and Why of Jewish Liturgy. His latest book is the forthcoming The Rhetoric Of Jewish Prayer: A Historical And Literary Commentary On The Prayerbook.
Aryeh Klapper received ordination from RIETS at Yeshiva University (YU), and an MA in Bible from YU’s Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, where he also did extensive graduate coursework in Talmud. He teaches Rabbinic Literature at Gann Academy, and is Dean of The Center for Modern Torah Leadership, which combines halakhic commitment and rigorous traditional study with pedagogic innovation, gratitude for the spiritual challenges of modernity, and a deep commitment to seeing the tzelem elokim in every person. His most recent publications discuss the ethics of torture and the existence and parameters of a halakhic obligation to prevent genocide. His curricular projects include "Teaching Talmud Systematically", a conceptual understanding of the role of keywords in Talmud that generates specific strategies for individual teaching and schoolwide progression and enables integrated discussion of content and skills curricula.
David Kraemer is Professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at the Jewish Theological Seminary of American, where he also serves as Joseph J. and Dora Abbell Librarian (director of the library). As Librarian, Prof. Kraemer is at the helm of the most extensive collection of Judaica—rare and contemporary—in the Western hemisphere. A prolific author and commentator, Prof. Kraemer’s books include The Mind of the Talmud (Oxford, 1990), Responses to Suffering in Classical Rabbinic Literature (Oxford, 1995), and The Meanings of Death in Rabbinic Judaism (Routledge, 2000), among others. His most recent book is Jewish Eating and Identity Through the Ages (Routledge, 2007). He has been associated for many years with CLAL: The National Jewish Center of Learning and Leadership, and has been a teacher at The New York Kollel (Hebrew Union College), The Skirball Institute for Adult Jewish Study (Temple Emanuel), and Meah (Hebrew College of Boston).
Yehuda Kurtzer is a doctoral student in Jewish Studies at Harvard University, writing his dissertation on Jews of the Mediterranean diaspora and their relationship to the rise of rabbinic piety, and is an alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship Program. He is also currently an Instructor at Hebrew College, teaching history and rabbinic texts in the Rabbinical School.
Jenny Labendz is a PhD candidate in Talmud at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and teaches in the Yesodot program at the Drisha Institute. A graduate of Barnard College, she received an MA from Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and has taught at Machon Pardes, Camp Ramah, and other Jewish institutions in Israel and America.
Gail Labovitz is Assistant Professor of Rabbinic Literature at the American Jewish University and Chair of the Department of Rabbinics at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies. She was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America (JTS) in 1992 and received her doctorate in Talmud and Rabbinics there in 2002. She has also served as the Senior Research Analyst in Judaism for the Feminist Sexual Ethics Project at Brandeis University and as the coordinator for the Jewish Women’s Research Group, a project of the Women’s Studies Program at JTS.
Ruth Langer is Associate Professor of Jewish Studies in the Theology Department at Boston College and Associate Director of its Center for Christian-Jewish Learning. Her publications focus on issues in Jewish liturgy and in Jewish-Christian relations. At Boston College, a Jesuit and Catholic university, the overwhelming majority of her students are Christians.
Marjorie Lehman is assistant professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. Her scholarly interests are focused on the Ein Yaakov about which she is now writing a book. In addition to her scholarly work and published articles in the field of Talmud and gender studies, she has published in the area of Talmud and Jewish Education. Her articles, "For the Love of Talmud: Reflections on the Study of Bava Metzia, Perek 2," "The Babylonian Talmud in Cognitive Perspective: Reflections on the Nature of the Bavli and its Pedagogical Implications," and "Rediscovering 'Women' in the Talmudic Corpus: The Impact of Gender Studies on the Teaching of Talmudic Literature" have appeared in the Journal of Jewish Education.
Marcie Lenk, the Schimberg Fellow at Harvard University, is a doctoral candidate in Early Christianity and Rabbinic Judaism. She is the Academic Director of Me’ah in New York. Marcie has taught in Hebrew College's Me’ah program, at the Skirball Center at Temple Emanuel in New York City, at City College of New York, at Ma'ayan in Boston, and at the Drisha Institute in NY. While living in Jerusalem for twelve years, she was on the Talmud faculty at Midreshet Lindenbaum and taught Bible and Rabbinics at Pardes. She also taught at several Christian seminaries in Jerusalem, including the Tantur Ecumenical Institute, the Swedish Theological Institute and Ecce Homo Convent. She has an MS in Bible and a BA in Judaic Studies and Mathematics from Yeshiva University, and MTS from Harvard Divinity School.
Dov Lerea has been at the Abraham Joshua Heschel School in New York since its founding in 1983, and currently serves as the Dean of Judaic Studies. He also holds the position of Head of Education at Camp Yavneh in New Hampshire. Rabbi Lerea is the past Director of Secondary Education at Hebrew College in Newton, Massachusetts, and taught for many years at both the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education and the Wexner Heritage Foundation. He was ordained at both the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University.
Sarra Lev teaches Talmud and midrash at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Philadelphia. She earned a bachelor of arts degree in religious studies from York University, rabbinic ordination and a master of arts in Hebrew letters from RRC, and a doctorate in rabbinic literature from New York University. A member of several Jewish communities, she has taught courses on Judaism for programs and institutions including Jewish Alive & American, the Feminist Center of the American Jewish Congress, New York University, as well as Bat Kol: A Feminist House of Study, which she co-founded. She believes that the role of the rabbi is, above all, to engage in social justice as a function of living a life connected to the divine, and teaches rabbinic texts with great love and deep critique towards that end. Her primary areas of interest are gender and power in rabbinic texts.
Judd Kruger Levingston teaches rabbinics and Jewish history at the Robert Saligman Middle School, Perelman Jewish Day School and is an adjunct member of the Religion department at Temple University. A graduate of Harvard College (AB) and the Jewish Theological Seminary (MA, Rabbi, PhD), he has received an AVI CHAI technology grant to develop an online siddur, and is currently working on a book entitled Thou Shalt Not Moralize: Moral Education in Public and Private Schools, to be published by Praeger/Greenwood in 2009.
Jon A. Levisohn is assistant professor of Jewish education at Brandeis University and assistant director of the Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education. An alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, he holds graduate degrees from Stanford University and a BA from Harvard College, has also studied at the Hebrew University, the Shalom Hartman Institute, and Yeshivat Sha'alvim, and has been teaching in various venues for 15 years. His research focuses on philosophy of education, both Jewish and general, in which he has published over a dozen articles. At the Mandel Center, he directs the Initiative on Bridging Scholarship and Pedagogy in Jewish Studies. He is chair of the Conference on Teaching Rabbinic Literature.
Ethan Linden is the Assistant Director of Camp Ramah in New England and the Rabbinic Advisor for the Student Conservative Minyan at Harvard University Hillel. He was ordained in May at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He received his B.A. from Cornell University, with a major in International Relations and Ethics. He spent a year in Jerusalem in the Melton Senior Educators program focusing his work on teaching Talmud to adult beginners.
Dov Linzer is Rosh HaYeshiva and Dean of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School. Rabbi Linzer received ordination from the Israeli Rabbinate and is a recipient of the Javits Graduate Fellowship. Previously the head of the Boca Raton Kollel, Rabbi Linzer spearheaded the development of the YCT Rabbinical School curriculum, shaping an innovative four-year smicha program which provides its students with rigorous halakhic study and sophisticated professional training in the context of a religious atmosphere which cultivates openness and inclusiveness.
Shari L. Lowin is Assistant Professor in the Department of Religious Studies at Stonehill College where she teaches courses on both Jewish and Muslim intellectual thought and intellectual history. She received her PhD from the University of Chicago. Her recent book, The Making of a Forefather: Abraham in Islamic and Jewish Exegetical Narratives, examines the mutual influences of hadith and midrash aggadah on one another on the creation of their depictions of this shared patriarch.
Benjamin Mann is the Head of the Middle School and Jewish Studies Coordinator of the Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan. Previously, he taught Humash and served as Middle School Coordinator of Special Services and Judaic Studies Curriculum at the Solomon Schechter Day School of Bergen County. He holds master’s degrees in Judaic Studies from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and in Learning Disabilities from Teachers College of Columbia University.
Claudia Marbach has been teaching at JCDS, Boston’s Jewish Community Day School, since 1999. She teaches Torah She-b'al peh ("Toshba") and continues to develop the Toshba and Judaics curriculum in the Middle School. Claudia spent a year at a women's yeshiva in Israel, and studied at Drisha in New York. She has a BA in English from Barnard College and a law degree from Boston University.
Evyatar Marienberg, originally from Israel, studied theology at the Institut Catholique de Paris and received his doctorate from the School of Social Sciences (EHESS), also in Paris. His main fields of interest are contemporary Catholicism and medieval Jewish law. Currently on leave from the Department of Talmud and Rabbinics at the Jewish Theological Seminary where he is an Assistant Professor, he is a Starr Fellow at Harvard University.
Vivie Mayer is the Director of the Beit Midrash and the Director of the Mechinah program at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. A 1996 graduate of RRC, she has returned there to teach after ten years of serving as a congregational rabbi in Danbury, Connecticut. She was raised and educated in Modern Orthodox communities, and lived and taught in Israel for seven years.
Karen G. Reiss Medwed is Director of Teacher Education for Religious Education at the Graduate School of Education, University of Pennsylvania. She holds rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America and a PhD in education and Jewish Studies from New York University. Dr. Reiss Medwed’s interests include pedagogy and curriculum development in Jewish educational venues for the teaching and learning of Jewish texts, as well as how our understanding of teaching Jewish texts is informed by our understanding of the teacher and learner experiences with those texts.
Joshua Moss teaches rabbinics at the American Hebrew Academy, a boarding/day high school in Greensboro, North Carolina. He also serves as a houseparent in a residential house and supervisor of the Reform minyan. Previously he taught at Wright State University (Dayton, Ohio) and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (Cincinnati, Ohio), where he earned his Ph.D. in Rabbinic Literature. His dissertation has been published by Gorgias Press, and is titled Midrash and Legend: Historical Anecdotes in the Tannaitic Midrashim.
Robin Nafshi currently directs Rimon: Collaborative Jewish Learning in MetroWest. Rimon has brought together 45 synagogues and agencies to share resources and collaborate on adult Jewish learning programs. She was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2005, where she was a Wexner Graduate Fellow, and served as Assistant Rabbi at Temple Emeth in Teaneck upon ordination. Her interest in adult Jewish learning dramatically grew when she was selected to participate in the Wexner Heritage Foundation program for lay leaders in San Francisco from 1996-1998.
Jack Nahmod is Chair of the Talmud Department at Beth Tfiloh Dahan High School in Baltimore, and a Rabbinic Associate of Beth Tfiloh Congregation. At the high school, he is a teacher and curriculum developer in Talmud, Tanakh and history of Zionism, and delivers sermons and teaches classes in the congregation. He is currently a TICHON Fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute. He received his ordination from Yeshivat Chovevei Torah in Manhattan, an MA from Jewish Theological Seminary of America, a law degree from Chicago Kent College of Law in Chicago, and a BA in English Literature from the University of Michigan. He has taught at the JCC and 92nd Street Y in Manhattan, and at various congregations and university Hillels.
George Nudell has been the Rabbi of Congregation Beth Israel in Scotch Plains, NJ since August 1982, after being ordained that year at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. Born in Minneapolis, Minnesota, he did his undergraduate work at the University of Minnesota earning a B.A. in Hebrew and a B.S. in Secondary Education-Foreign Language. He has worked in the field of Jewish Education for the past 36 years.
Michael Paley is a scholar-in-residence at the Jewish Resource Center of UJA-Federation of New York. He also teaches at the Columbia School of Journalism, City College, and the Ivry Prozdor High School of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. Newsweek magazine named him one of the 50 most influential rabbis in 2007. Rabbi Paley previously served as professor of Jewish studies and dean at Bard, and as the university chaplain at Columbia University. He also founded the Edgar M. Bronfman Youth Fellowships in Israel, and served as the Jewish chaplain at Dartmouth College. He was ordained at Yeshivat B'nai Or and was a student at Yeshivat Hamivtar in Jerusalem. At UJA-Federation, he lectures on a wide variety of subjects, including the weekly Torah portion, prayer, and Jewish history, Jewish ethics, and Islam.
Aaron Panken is Vice President for Strategic Initiatives at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), where he served as Dean and Dean of Students at the New York Campus from 1996-2007, and has taught Second Temple and Rabbinic Literature since 1995. A graduate of Johns Hopkins University, HUC-JIR (where he was ordained in 1991) and New York University (from which he received a PhD in 2003), his ongoing research interests include the change and growth of Jewish law during the rabbinic period (70-600 CE), the application of rabbinic texts to modern reality, and the intersection between science and religion. He recently published The Rhetoric of Innovation (University Press of America, 2005), which explores legal change in rabbinic texts, and is currently at work on a book-length history of Hanukkah.
Carl Perkins has been the rabbi of Temple Aliyah in Needham, MA, since 1991. He was educated at Haverford College, Harvard Law School, and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, where he was ordained and awarded a master's degree in Talmud and Rabbinics. A former Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellow and Wexner Graduate Fellow, he recently became a Senior Rabbinic Fellow at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. He is an Adjunct Instructor in Rabbinics at the Hebrew College Rabbinical School and has taught Rabbinics in the Hebrew College Me’ah Program and in the Me’ah Graduate Institute. He is the author of the revised edition of Embracing Judaism (Rabbinical Assembly, 1999), an introduction to Judaism and guide for Jews by choice.
Ellen Pildis is the School Rabbi and Director of Jewish Studies at The Rashi School. She is a graduate of Stern College of Yeshiva University, and obtained a Master’s Degree in Special Education from Boston College as well as a Masters Degree in Jewish Studies from Hebrew College. She was ordained byAleph: The Alliance for Jewish Renewal, and hopes to infuse people with a deep love for Jewish life, Jewish teachings and Jewish spiritual practices. She brings to the rabbinate a background in special education and clinical social work; her work experience includes substance abuse counseling and family systems therapy, as well as pastoral counseling in a hospital setting. Before coming to The Rashi School, Rabbi Pildis worked at Temple Beth Zion in Brookline, Massachusetts, an independent congregation offering a full array of opportunities for Jews from all backgrounds and all ages.
Helen Plotkin is the cofounder and director of the Beit Midrash at Swarthmore College, a joint project of the College Library and the Department of Religion, where she teaches classical Hebrew and Jewish texts. She is a senior rabbinical student at RRC. She also holds the position of family educator at Congregation Beth Israel in Media, PA, where she teaches adults, families, and teens.
Daniel Reifman is a lecturer in halakhah at Midreshet Lindenbaum and Midreshet AMIT in Jerusalem. He spent three years studying at Yeshivat Shaalvim, earned a B.A. from Columbia College, and received rabbinic ordination and an M.A. in Bible from Yeshiva University. For the past five years, Rabbi Reifman has taught the advanced halakhah class for the Scholars' Circle program at the Drisha Institute. He has also taught Talmud and Halakhah at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah.
Gidon Rothstein is Director of Judaic Studies Curriculum and Faculty Development at HAFTR/Machon haTorah, a high school in Long Island, NY. He has previously served as Gruss Fellow in Jewish Law at NYU School of Law and as Rosh Kollel at the YU/HAFTR Community Kollel. In these various capacities, he has taught rabbinic texts to students of a wide range of ages and faith commitments.
Jeffrey L. Rubenstein is Skirball Professor of Rabbinic Literature in the Department of Hebrew and Judaic Studies of New York University. His research interests include rabbinic narratives, the history and development of Talmudic law, and the history of Judaism in late antiquity.
Alieza Salzberg is currently studying in Matan's Advanced Talmudic Institute and pursuing an MA in Talmud at Bar Ilan University. She has taught Talmud, aggada, and "Creative Torah-Creative Writing Workshops" at the Drisha Institute in New York, Pardes Institute, the Chavrutah program at Hebrew University, and Emunah V'Omanut in Jerusalem. Alieza recently completed an MA in Creative Writing at City College and holds a BA in English and Psychology from Barnard College. She blogs about Talmud through the lens of feminism and literature at www.gufakashya.com.
Benjamin J. Samuels is the rabbi of Congregation Shaarei Tefillah in Newton Centre, Massachusetts. He teaches widely in the greater Boston community including serving as a Genesis Scholar at Combined Jewish Philanthropies, a Master Instructor for Ma'ayan: Torah Initiatives for Jewish Women, Curriculum Developer and Instructor for Ikkarim: Jewish Values and the Journey for Jewish Parents, Adjunct Instructor of Rabbinics at Hebrew College, and Instructor of Rabbinics and Medieval Jewish History for Hebrew College’s Me'ah program. He received his semikhah from RIETS at Yeshiva University, where he was a Wexner Graduate Fellow, and is an alumnus of Yeshivat Har Etzion (Gush). Rabbi Samuels is currently a doctoral student at Boston University in its Science, Philosophy and Religion program and has special interest in the history of Jewish responses to changes in scientific understanding and awareness.
Michael Satlow is associate professor of Religious Studies and Judaic Studies at Brown University, specializing in the history and literature of early Judaism. He has published on issues of marriage, gender, and sexuality among Jews in antiquity, and is most recently the author of Creating Judaism: History, Tradition, Practice.
Jeffrey Schein is Professor of Jewish Education and Director of the Center for Jewish Education at Siegal College in Cleveland. He has served as a senior consultant for Jewish education to the Mandel Center for Jewish Education of the JCC’s of North America, and the Jewish Reconstructionist Federation. His research interests include family and adult learning, the teaching of Jewish texts, and the professional development of Jewish educators. He is a Reconstructionist rabbi and a graduate of the doctoral program in curriculum studies of Temple University.
Neal Scheindlin teaches Halacha and Ethics at Milken Community High School of Stephen Wise Temple, where he chairs the Jewish Studies Department. He received an M.A. and rabbinic ordination at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
Solomon Schimmel is Professor of Jewish Education and Psychology at Hebrew College, Newton, MA, where he also teaches midrash, Mishna, Talmud, and halakha. He is the author of Wounds Not Healed by Time: The Power of Repentance and Forgiveness, and The Seven Deadly Sins: Jewish, Christian and Classical Reflections on Human Psychology (both published by Oxford University Press), and numerous articles and book chapters on Jewish thought, psychology of religion, and Jewish education. Dr. Schimmel was a Fulbright Senior Research Scholar and Visiting Fellow at Cambridge University, England in 1998. Dr. Schimmel’s book on the psychology of scriptural fundamentalists, titled The Tenacity of Unreasonable Beliefs,will be published by Oxford University Press in July 2008.
Lisa Schlaff is Judaic Curriculum Coordinator at SAR High School in Riverdale, New York, where she teaches Talmud and Bible. She completed an EdM at Teachers College, Columbia University, and is working on a PhD in Talmud at New York University. Lisa frequently teaches at the Drisha Institute and is an alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship program.
Lee S. Shulman is president of The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, and Charles E. Ducommun Professor of Education Emeritus and professor of psychology emeritus (by courtesy) at Stanford University. He previously served as professor of educational psychology and medical education at Michigan State University, where he founded and co-directed the Institute for Research on Teaching (IRT), and as visiting professor in the Schools of Education and Medicine at the Hebrew University. He is the recipient of numerous honors, awards and fellowships in the fields of education and educational research. Two books published in 2004, The Wisdom of Practice and Teaching as Community Property, bring together his collected writings on teaching, teacher education and higher education. Dr. Shulman's research has dealt with such topics as quality of teaching and teacher education; the growth of pedagogical content knowledge; the psychology of instruction; the role of the scholarship of teaching in supporting culture change in higher education; and the function and features of signature pedagogies in professional education. He has advised and taught in the Mandel Jerusalem Fellows and the School for Educational Leadership continuously since each program’s inception. He developed the doctoral concentration in research in Jewish education at Stanford in the early 90s, and holds honorary doctorates from the University of Judaism, HUC and JTS.
Deena Sigel has taught Torah for fifteen years to adults and children in various informal and formal educational settings in the US, England and Israel. She currently resides in Jerusalem, and recently completed her educational doctorate (EdD) at the Institute of Education at the University of London, on investigating children's understandings of midrash and developing pedagogy for midrash at the elementary school level. Her work has been presented at a number of international educational conferences.
Moriah SimonHazani, a native of Jerusalem, received rabbinic ordination from the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. She is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Pennsylvania in the Near Eastern Language and Civilization department. Since her ordination, Rabbi SimonHazani has taught rabbinic texts and Hebrew literature to rabbinical students.
Shawn SimonHazani is the Rav Beit Hasefer at the Robert Saligman Middle School of the Raymond and Ruth Perelman Jewish Day School. He was ordained at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in Los Angeles. He currently teaches a class on Rabbi as Educational Leader at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College.
Moshe Sokolow is the Fanya Gottesfeld Heller Professor of Jewish Education at the Azrieli Graduate School of Jewish Education and Administration and Professor of Bible at Yeshiva University. He has just published Hatzi Nehama: Studies in the Weekly Parashah based on the Lessons of Nehama Leibowitz (Jerusalem: URIM, 2007), and has been awarded a grant from the Covenant Foundation for a project entitled "Reclaiming Interpretation". He studied with Leibowitz, and translated and edited Nehama Leibowitz: On Teaching Tanakh (New York: 1987), Nehama Leibowitz: Active Learning in the Teaching of Jewish History (New York: 1989), and compiled Mafteah ha-Gilyonot: An Index to Nehama Leibowitz’s Weekly Parshah Sheets (New York: 1993). Rabbi Dr. Sokolow is the author of numerous scholarly and popular articles on Bible, and has conducted a weekly class on the weekly parasha at Lincoln Square Synagogue in New York City for more than twenty years.
Bradley Solmsen is the director of two summer programs for high school students at Brandeis University: BIMA and Genesis. BIMA is a summer institute for talented high school students allowing them to take their artistic skills to a higher level in a supportive, creative Jewish environment. Genesis is a pluralistic summer program integrating Jewish studies, social action and community building. He is also the associate director of the Institute for Informal Jewish Education at Brandeis. Rabbi Solmsen was ordained at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in New York, and received a master's degree in Jewish education from the Jewish Theological Seminary. He has held fellowships at the Melton Centre Senior Educator’s Program at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at the Institute for Informal Jewish Education. He has extensive experience as a Jewish educator in Israel and the US, working with teenagers and college students and training Jewish educators.
Jeffrey Spitzer is chair of the department of rabbinic literature at Gann Academy in Waltham, Massachusetts, where he teaches Talmud and midrash. He also teaches in a variety of adult education contexts, including Hebrew College’s Me’ah program in Boston. He has a particular interest in using technology in his teaching, and received a Covenant Grant to develop a Rabbinics Lab, in which middle school students learned to engage in the ongoing process of conversational Torah. He received his MPhil from the Jewish Theological Seminary.
David Starr serves as Dean of the Me'ah program at Hebrew College, where he also teaches Jewish history. He is completing a biography of Solomon Schechter, and is writing a study of adulthood and adult learning in contemporary Jewish life.
Elana Stein is a graduate student in Religion at Columbia University. Her focus is the application of legal theory to traditional Jewish law. She also spent three years studying in Yeshiva University's Advanced Talmud Program for Women, and is currently serving her second year as Resident Scholar of the Jewish Center in Manhattan.
Jonah Chanan Steinberg is Associate Dean and Assistant Professor of Rabbinics at the Rabbinical School of Hebrew College. He served as Visiting Instructor of Talmud and Rabbinics at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1997, and also taught at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, as a Finkelstein Fellow of the University of Judaism, and then at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, where he led the program in Classical Rabbinic Literature and Civilization, where he has also served as Director of Talmudic Studies. He received his Ph.D. at Columbia University, and is a recipient of the New Scholar Award from the Journal of Feminist Studies in Religion.
David Stern is Ruth Meltzer Professor of Classical Hebrew Literature at the University of Pennsylvania. His field of specialization is classical Jewish literature and religion. He is the author of eight books including Parables in Midrash: Narrative and Exegesis in Rabbinic Literature; Rabbinic Fantasies: Imaginative Narratives from Classical Hebrew Literature, and Midrash and Theory: Ancient Jewish Exegesis and Contemporary Literary Studies. In Spring 2007, he curated the acclaimed book exhibit, “CHOSEN: Philadelphia’s Great Hebraica,” at the Rosenbach Museum & Library in Philadelphia and wrote the catalogue for the exhibit. He is currently writing a book tracing the material history of four classic Jewish books, one of which is the Babylonian Talmud.
Ethan Tucker is a co-founder of Mechon Hadar (www.mechonhadar.org) and teaches Talmud and halakha in the Machon's summer yeshivah, Yeshivat Hadar. He is also a faculty member at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education, where he teaches Talmud and Halakhah in the Scholars Circle. Rabbi Tucker was ordained by the Chief Rabbinate of Israel after years of study at Yeshivat Ma'ale Gilboa, and earned a PhD in Talmud and Rabbinics from the Jewish Theological Seminary. He is a Jewish Social Entreprenurial Fellow at the Harold Grinspoon Foundation.
Avraham Walfish teaches Talmud and rabbinic thought at the Herzog College in Alon Shvut, Bar Ilan University, and the Tekoah Yeshiva. An ordained Orthodox rabbi, he wrote his doctoral dissertation on the literary features of Mishnah and their meaning, and has authored numerous articles on methods of reading and teaching Mishnah, Tosefta, Talmud, and midrash.
Dvora Weisberg is Associate Professor of Rabbinics and Director of the Lainer Beit Midrash at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles. Her primary teaching responsibilities involve introductory courses in Mishnah, Aramaic and Talmud for rabbinic and education students.
Barry Wimpfheimer is Assistant Professor of Religion and Law at Northwestern University. An alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship program, Wimpfheimer received rabbinic ordination from Yeshiva University in 2000 and a Ph.D in Religion from Columbia University in 2005.
Elyse Winick is the Associate Director of KOACH, the College Outreach Department of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, and was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. Rabbi Winick is a graduate of Brandeis University, and has worked with college students for nearly 20 years. Most of her teaching has focused on the writings of Abraham Joshua Heschel, rabbinic texts, and the the place of halakha in Conservative Judaism.
Lisa Karp Wurtele teaches the gamut of what is covered by the course title “Judaic Studies”: holidays, history, Jewish texts, as well as (Jewish) current events to middle-schoolers at Tehiyah Day School (a non-denominational Jewish day school), where she has taught for the past seven years. Before moving to the Bay Area she taught Arabic and Islamic Civilization, first as a teaching fellow at Harvard (from which she received her A.M. and Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations) and Harvard Summer School, then as an instructor and lecturer at Harvard Extension School, Boston University, and Brandeis University’s Near Eastern Languages Department.