Sara Aeder is the Special Projects Manager at the Bronfman Center at NYU. She runs the Interfaith Entrepreneur Fellowship, a UJA funded program that guides college students in creating interfaith actions and alliances on campus, as well as other interfaith projects at NYU. She also directs the Bronfman-WUJS Global Fellows, a cohort of student leaders from around the world, coordinates Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks' annual residency at NYU, and promotes Jewish engagement in the Arab Gulf. Sara received her MA in Hebrew and Judaic Studies and her Masters in Public Administration from NYU in December 2017. Prior to her graduate studies, she served as Assistant Director of AJC ACCESS Global, the young leadership division of AJC. Additionally, she served as Director of AJC’s Goldman Fellowship, an opportunity for students to gain substantive experience working in Jewish communal life. Prior to her time at AJC, she interned at the Clinton Global Initiative in the Event Logistics department. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at NYU, where she concentrated in the Sociology of Extremism and De-Radicalization. She currently lives in New York with her husband and two children.
Rabbi Daniel Aronson
Rabbi Daniel Aronson serves the Houston Jewish community as an educator, counselor and life cycle officiant. Most recently, he has been Interim Executive Director of the Hillel at Texas A&M University, Director of Youth and Education at Congregation Or Ami and B'nei Mitzvah Coordinator at Congregation Emanu El in Houston, TX. He has also been an instructor for the Florence Melton Adult School of Jewish Learning of the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center and for Houston's Kehillah High School. Additionally, he has served congregations and Jewish institutions in Pennysylvania, Rhode Island and Oregon. A graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, Brandeis University and Brown University, Rabbi Aronson is an alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship. He is currently pursuing an MA in Jewish Education through the Davidson School of Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He lives in Houston with his wife, daughter and two cats, has an adult son, and enjoys reading, crossword puzzles, board games, and spending time with friends on Shabbat.
Jacob Bernstein is currently a graduate student at Yeshiva University, completing semikha (rabbinic ordination) and beginning a doctoral degree in Modern Jewish History. He is a Wexner Graduate Fellow and spends his summers at Camp Morasha as the Director of Educational Programming. Jacob resides in Jerusalem with his wife and two children, and is excited to be a part of this year’s Moot Beit Din Competition
Aaron Dorfman is a lifelong educator, problem-solver, and social justice activist. He serves as President of Lippman Kanfer Foundation for Living Torah, a family foundation committed to helping Jews and fellow travelers apply Jewish wisdom to live better lives and shape a better world. Prior to his work at the foundation, Aaron spent 10 years as part of the leadership team at American Jewish World Service (AJWS), and nine years leading informal education programs at Temple Isaiah, a Reform synagogue in the San Francisco Bay Area. Aaron holds a BA from the University of Wisconsin and an MPP from the Harvard Kennedy School and lives in Brooklyn with his wife Talia and his daughters Oren, Sela, and Dami.
Rabbi David Englender
Rabbi David Englander was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1999, where he also received a Master of Arts in Jewish Education. Prior to entering the Seminary, Rabbi Englander studied for a year at Yeshivat Hamivtar in Efrat, Israel, and graduated from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor with a B.A. in History. Upon ordination Rabbi Englander joined the clergy team at B’nai Torah Congregation, a large and vibrant Conservative synagogue in Boca Raton, FL. At B'nai Torah, Rabbi Englander conducts Shabbat and holiday services, directs and teaches in the Lillian, Philip and Gerry Cooperman Academy for Adult Jewish Learning, and is a principal instructor and coordinator for the Basic Judaism and Conversion program. He is active in pastoral care activities and officiates at all lifecycle events. Rabbi Englander grew up in Spring Valley, NY. David and his wife Stephanie are the proud parents of Yaffa, Zev and Ayal.
Miriam Gedwiser is a faculty member at Drisha. She has a BA from the University of Chicago in the History and Philosophy of Science and a JD from NYU School of Law. She studied in the Drisha Scholars Circle as well as at other programs in Israel and Boston, and has taught at several New York area synagogues and Hillels. She practiced commercial litigation at a large law firm, and completed a judicial clerkship in the Southern District of New York.
Rabbanit Nechama Goldman Barash
Nechama Goldman Barash made aliyah from Philadelphia over 20 years ago after graduating from Stern College. She studied for three years in Matan’s Advanced Talmud Institute and finished a master’s degree in Talmud at Bar-Ilan University. She is a graduate of Nishmat’s Yoetzet Halacha program and has been certified to teach brides before their weddings, as well as qualifying as a sex educator through Yahel and the Eden Center. She also studied for three years in Matan's advanced halakha program, Hilkhata. She teaches contemporary halakha and Talmud at Matan and Pardes, as well as Talmud and women and halakha in Torah V'Avodah (TVA), a Bnei Akiva gap year program based in Matan. She is an active member of Beit Hillel and participates in interfaith dialogue through Roots, based in Gush Etzion, close to where she lives with her husband and four daughters.
Rabbi Dan Margulies
Dan Margulies is originally from Bethesda, MD. He received his BA in Chemical Physics and Mathematics from Columbia University in the City of New York. Before attending college he learned at Yeshivat Eretz HaTzvi in Jerusalem, where he made lasting relationships with rebbeim who empowered and inspired him to continue learning intensively. Dan has served as an intern at YIOZ (Young Israel Ohab Zedek) of North Riverdale/Yonkers, The Hebrew Institute of Riverdale – The Bayit, The Hebrew Home at Riverdale, and The Abraham Joshua Heschel School. Through YCT and the Center for Modern Torah Leadership Dan has participated in several intensive kollel programs researching halakhic topics of relevance to contemporary society. He has taught widely in the New York and D.C. metro-areas, giving weekly shiurim and serving
Rabbi Carl Perkins
Carl Perkins is the rabbi of Temple Aliyah, a Conservative synagogue in Needham, MA. Educated at Haverford College, Harvard Law School and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, he has taught and lectured widely in the Boston area, including at Hebrew College and Boston College Law School. He is the author of the revised edition of Embracing Judaism, a guide for prospective Jews by Choice, and numerous short essays on the Jewish Values Online website.
Dr. Jonathan Rosman
Dr. Jonathan Rosman is a cardiac electrophysiologist in Boca Raton, Florida. He received his MD from NYU Medical School and did his residency and fellowships at Beth Israel hospital in NY and Brigham and Women's hospital in MA. He currently works for Cardiac Arrhythmia Services and teaches at FAU medical school. Dr. Rosman has written a patient guide to end of life issues regarding pacemakers and defibrillators for the Heart Rhythm Society. He has also written 2 articles in the Journal of Halacha and Contemporary Society on end of life issues.
Rabbi David Shabatai
Rabbi David Shabtai is the rabbi of the Sephardic Minyan at the Boca Raton Synagogue, teaches at Yeshiva High School in Boca Raton and at Tiferes Torah of Boca Raton, and is on the faculty of the Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University. He is interested in the interaction of bioethics and Judaism and has written extensively on medical Halakhah and Jewish bioethics.
Laynie Soloman is a junior faculty member and shoel u'meshiv at Yeshivat Hadar, an egalitarian yeshiva in New York City. Laynie is pursuing a dual M.A. in Talmud/Rabbinics & Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary, and holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from Goucher College. They have spent several years learning and teaching in various batei midrash (homes for Jewish learning) including SVARA: A Traditionally Radical Yeshiva, where they serve as a faculty member and the Director of Educational Initiatives. When not in shul or learning Talmud, you can find Laynie reading about Liberation Theology, collecting comic books, and singing niggunim.
Rabbi Jonathan Spira-Savett
Jon Spira-Savett serves as rabbi for Temple Beth Abraham, the Jewish community in and around Nashua, New Hampshire. Jon has been a consultant and teacher in the Jewish youth philanthropy movement around the United States, teaching students in grades 7-12 about tzedakah, community investment, and social justice philanthropy. Jon taught both Judaic Studies and American Studies (history and literature) at the Solomon Schechter High School of Long Island. The American Studies program he co-developed explored the tensions between individual and community, freedom and the public good through literature, art and politics, and brought Jewish thought and American thought into conversation with each other. He has Hebrew High courses about power, ethical philosophy, and lenses on the value of a human life. Jon is a member of the Clinical Ethics Committee at Southern New Hampshire Medical Center in Nashua, and teaches about bioethics in the synagogue and the wider community.
Joseph (“Joey”) Steiner is a partner in the Litigation Department at Osler, Hoskin & Harcourt LLP, a major Canadian law firm with offices in Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Calgary, Vancouver and New York. His practice, based in the firm’s Toronto office, is in general commercial litigation with an emphasis on tax litigation. Joey’s career in volunteer Jewish community service has largely revolved around Jewish education. He is a member of the boards of Prizmah: Center for Jewish Day Schools and Bialik Hebrew Day School. He has also been a board member of Paul Penna Downtown Jewish Day School and of Hillel of Greater Toronto (now part of Hillel Ontario). He is an associate member of the board of governors of the Jewish Agency for Israel, where he serves on the Israel engagement committee, the subcommittee on programs of the budget and finance committee, and the budget and finance committee itself. Joey is a member of the board of the Canadian Friends of the Shalom Hartman Institute and of the consolidated board of that Institute, which is based in Jerusalem and New York. He has been chair of the Board of Jewish Education in Toronto and chair of UJA Federation of Greater Toronto.
Rabbi Cheryl Weiner
Rabbi Cheryl Weiner, Ph.D., BCC, is an award-winning educator who serves as a Community Rabbi and Staff Chaplain for Mishkan Miami, the Spiritual Connection for the Greater Miami Jewish Federation. She is on the Executive Board of the Rabbinical Association of Greater Miami and is Director of the Refuat HaNefesh (Volunteer Spiritual Care Visiting the Sick) Program and is a Chaplain with Seasons Hospice, Broward. Ordained in 2007 from the Academy for Jewish Religion, California, she is on the Board of Trustees for the Jewish Publication Society and is a former board member of Neshama, the Association for Jewish Chaplaincy.