Episode 014: Stefanie Rhodes, Slingshot Fund– August 6th, 2017

Stefanie RhodesStefanie Rhodes is the Executive Director for the Slingshot Fund and has spent the last 12 years working in Jewish philanthropy. Most recently, she ran the Annual Fund at the JCC Manhattan where she started the first JCC Giving Circle to benefit JCC programs. She also spent 9 years working at the Jewish Funders Network, where she ran the Younger Funders programing and was the founding Director of the Foundation Professionals program. Stefanie is excited to be marrying her passion for community building, innovation and Jewish life in her role as Executive Director of Slingshot.

Stefanie holds a BA in Journalism and a Certificate in Jewish Studies from Indiana University. She also has a Certificate in Jewish Philanthropy from Yeshiva University. She is married to Hue, and together they have two spunky and wonderful children.

Contact Stefanie:

stefanie [at] slingshotfund.org
(646) 838-2148

Podcast Episode:

Stefanie Rhodes discusses the history and purpose behind the annual Slingshot Guide and the impact of this work on the larger Jewish innovation sector.

Podcast Partners:

NLL Logo

The Nonprofit Learning Lab (NLL) is a national nonprofit that connects, supports and develops individuals seeking to lead the nonprofit sector.
We work with individuals to sharpen their skills in fundraising, board development, organizational leadership and capacity building. www.nonprofitlearninglab.org


The Wexner Field Fellowship is now accepting pre-applications through September 6th. You can find more information on their website: www.wexnerfoundation.org

Episode 013: Bob Goldfarb, Jewish Creativity International– July 23rd, 2017

Bob GoldfarbBob Goldfarb is president of Jewish Creativity International, a nonprofit that works with Jewish arts and culture projects. He has long experience in media including public radio, the recording industry, and newspaper publishing. Bob is a member of the Jewish Center synagogue in Manhattan, writes book reviews for the Jewish Book Council, serves as a mentor for PresenTense, and is the men’s davening coordinator for the independent minyan Darkhei Noam.

Previously Bob worked in media management in radio, the music industry, and music publishing. He grew up in Connecticut, and has lived in Boston, Seattle, Los Angeles, and Jerusalem. He now lives in New York.

Contact Bob:

bob [at] jewishcreativity.org

Podcast Episode:

Bob Goldfarb discusses the evolution and shifting nature of Jewish arts and cultural engagement.

It’s Who You Know! The Podcast is fiscally sponsored by Jewish Creativity International.

Podcast Partner:

NLL LogoThe Nonprofit Learning Lab (NLL) is a national nonprofit that connects, supports and develops individuals seeking to lead the nonprofit sector.
We work with individuals to sharpen their skills in fundraising, board development, organizational leadership and capacity building.


Episode 012: Miriam Chilton, URJ Youth – July 9th, 2017

Miriam Chilton, Vice President/Youth, has worked at the URJ for the past nine years in a variety of functions.  Most recently she served as Director of Strategy, Finance and Operations for Youth, Camp and Israel Programs. Prior to joining the URJ, Miriam worked in the corporate world for over 20 years. She worked at Time, Inc. where she led operational and development teams to improve magazine production and design by creating new operational models.  Before Time, Inc., Miriam worked in financial services at SCB Warburg (now UBS) where she was responsible for establishing and running a regional technology support organization that insured efficient and effective delivery of service to corporate and investment bankers. Miriam has a Master of Arts in Business Administration and Master of Science in Information Systems from Boston University and a Bachelor of Arts, Political Science from Ithaca College.

Miriam came to the URJ after serving eight years on her Temple board. She realized to affect the kind of change she wanted to see in the world she needed to apply her skills and talents in the Jewish communal world. She is still an active member of Temple Ner Tamid, Bloomfield, NJ.

Contact Miriam:

mchilton [at] urj.org

Podcast Episode:

Miriam Chilton discusses her experience working with a variety of teen based youth programs for the Reform Movement as well as what it was like becoming a Jewish professional.

Podcast Partner:

NLL Logo

The Nonprofit Learning Lab (NLL) is a national nonprofit that connects, supports and develops individuals seeking to lead the nonprofit sector.


Episode 011: Mark Gurvis, The Jewish Federations of North America – June 25th, 2017

Mark_Gurvis-0010Mark Gurvis joined The Jewish Federations of North America as its Executive Vice President in September 2013.

Mark has spent much of his life serving the Jewish people, leading initiatives in key communities across North America. In nearly 12 years as CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver, he spurred major growth in the Federation’s annual fundraising, from $4.2 million to $7.6 million, despite challenging economic times. During his tenure, the community’s endowment fund also climbed steeply, from $13 million to $34 million. At the same time, Gurvis modernized the Federation’s communications, broadened outreach to young Jews and families and raised Vancouver’s profile in Canada. The Federation’s ties to Israel and the global Jewish community also deepened under Gurvis, strengthening its partnership with the Upper Galilee Panhandle.

Before leading the Vancouver community, Mark was vice president/assistant director of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland. He directed their strategic planning process that resulted in a redesign of social planning and research. He also initiated the planning for a multi-project capital campaign for the Federation’s centennial.

Previously, as managing director of the Jewish Education Center of Cleveland, Gurvis coordinated a merger that created the new agency, and spearheaded a funding campaign that raised a $10 million Fund for the Jewish Future.

Mark earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the State University of New York at Albany, a Master of Arts degree in Jewish Community Service from Hebrew Union College and a Master of Social Work degree from the University of Southern California.

Contact Mark:


Podcast Episode:

Mark Gurvis discusses his lifelong work within the Federation system and his outlook on the future of these institutions.

Podcast Partner:

Timeless Ketbuah.png

This episode is made possible through a partnership with Timeless Ketubah, rich tradition for the modern era.



Episode 008: Gali Cooks, Leading Edge – May 14th, 2017

Gali Cooks is the inaugural Executive Director of Leading Edge, Alliance for Excellence in Jewish leadership, an organization formed in 2014 by foundations and federations to influence, inspire and enable dramatic change in attracting, developing and retaining top talent for Jewish organizations. Gali’s professional experience spans the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

Her career began as a speechwriter at the Embassy of Israel and a Legislative Assistant at AIPAC. She then joined the Harold Grinspoon Foundation as Founding Director of the PJ Library. From 2007-2013, Gali was Executive Director of the Rita & Stanley Kaplan Family Foundation. In the private sector, Gali was VP of Operations at an education technology startup. Most recently, Gali was Director of Business Operations in the Youth Division of URJ.

Gali serves on the Boards of Keshet and the Joshua Venture Group, and holds a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.B.A. from the NYU Stern School of Business. In 2016, she was named one of the Forward 50, an annual list of the top 50 Jews influencing American life, for her efforts to build the next generation of leaders.

Contact Gali:

Leadership Pipelines Initiative: Cultivating the Next Generation of Leaders for Jewish Nonprofits- Findings from Interviews and Research (2014)

Podcast Episode:

Gali Cooks discusses the emerging work of Leading Edge in the areas of CEO on-boarding, lay leadership development, and evaluating great places to work in the Jewish community.

Podcast Partner:

Timeless Ketbuah.png

This episode is made possible through a partnership with Timeless Ketubah, rich tradition for the modern era.


Bonus Episode 2: David Master, Timeless Ketubah– May 14th, 2017

David MasterTimeless Ketubah was founded in 2015 after years of developing a new way of approaching Ketubot/Ketubahs.  It all started when my wife, Elana, and I were planning our own wedding.  With her keen eye for style and color and my background in fine art and design, we worked together to create original elements for our wedding.  Throughout the busy planning process, there were three main areas of focus that we came to realize were most important.  They included (1) infusing rich, meaningful traditions and rituals (2) in a unique way (3) that would highlight our individual and collective personalities.

I love to challenge myself and turn the seemingly impossible into reality.  I was told that invitations were supposed to be flat, so I designed a 3-D pop-out wedding invitation that Elana and I hand-made (over a hundred of them).  I was also told that a ketubah should either be something that gets hung on a wall or gets rolled up and put in a safe place.  We chose to go in a different direction.

It was at this time that I developed and created the first sculptural ketubah (the image on this site’s homepage), which was able to perfectly capture the above three elements.  Although it took a long time to complete, it was truly a labor of love; I created the sculptural elements and Elana wrote a beautiful English interpretation for our ketubah’s text.  It became one of the focal points of our wedding, and is now one of the focal points of our home in Brooklyn, N.Y., that we have created together.

We want you and your soulmate to have a meaningful, unique, and special ketubah of your own; One that speaks to your relationship and your love for each other.

We invite you to explore our website at the various styles of sculptural ketubot/ketubahs that I have created and various texts crafted by Elana that you can customize to fit your needs and wants.  Your ketubah should capture your essence, and we will customize anything to your liking so that it is truly an expression of you and your soulmate.

Your wedding day is one of a kind; your ketubah should be too.

Contact David:


Podcast Episode:

David Master discusses his experience creating his first sculpture Ketubah and this passion became his profession.

Timeless Ketbuah

Episode 005: Rabbi Cherie Koller-Fox, NewCAJE – April 2nd, 2017

untitled-presentationRabbi Cherie Koller-Fox is the President and Founder of NewCAJE: Re-Imaging Jewish Education for the 21st Century. She is well known in the Boston area and beyond. She was ordained by the Academy for Jewish Religion in New York which is a pluralistic Jewish seminary. She has served as rabbi at Congregation Eitz Chayim in Cambridge, Temple Emanuel of Marlborough, Newton-Wellesley Hospital, and Beth Israel Hospital. She was also the Interim President of the Academy for Jewish Religion and is a founder and national chair of the Coalition for the Advancement of Jewish Education. Rabbi Cherie served as the chair of the NewCAJE conferences in 2010 – 2016.

Contact Rabbi Koller-Fox:

shual [at] comcast.net 

The Podcast Episode:

Rabbi Cherie Koller-Fox discusses bringing together Jewish educators from all different denominations to share and network together in an effort to improve the field.

Episode 004: Rabbi Joshua Rabin, USCJ – March 19th, 2017

rabbi-joshua-rabinRabbi Joshua Rabin is Director of Innovation at the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, where he is also the Program Director of the USCJ Convention. Prior to coming to USCJ, Josh served as the Rav Beit Sefer (Rabbi-in-Residence) of the Schechter School of Long Island from 2011-2014. Josh received his rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2011, where he served two terms as student body president.

Josh received a Certificate from The Principals’ Center at the Harvard University Graduate School of Education in 2014, and was an inaugural fellow at the Ruskay Institute for Jewish Professional Leadership at the UJA-Federation of New York. Josh lives on the Upper West Side with his wife, Rabbi Yael Hammerman, and their children Hannah and Shai. You can read more of Josh’s writings by visiting www.joshuarabin.com.

Contact Rabbi Joshua Rabin:

joshua.rabin [at] gmail.com

Will Your Synagogue be a Club or a Cause?

Podcast Episode:

Rabbi Joshua Rabin discusses his work helping synagogue communities discover their unique identity.

Episode 003: Aliza Mazor, Bikkurim (UpStart) – March 5th, 2017


Aliza Mazor is the Executive Director for Bikkurim: Advancing New Jewish Ideas, a joint project of Jewish Federations of North America (JFNA) and the Kaminer Family. Bikkurim will soon become part of UpStart together with Joshua Venture and the North American programs of PresenTense, forming an “innovation one-stop” for the Jewish community. Bikkurim has supported 33 innovative start-ups that contribute significantly to the diversification and reinvigoration of Jewish life. Through Atid Hazak (Strong Futures), Bikkurim prepares the most promising new initiatives in Jewish life to grow their impact.

Previously, Aliza served as an independent organizational consultant to philanthropies, capacity-builders, and social justice organizations. A Chicago native, Aliza spent fifteen years living and working in Israel and holds an MSW from Hebrew University in Jerusalem. She currently lives in New York City.

Contact Aliza:

amazor [at] bikkurim.org

Four Organizations Merge to Lead Next Stage of Jewish Innovation

The Podcast Episode:

Aliza Mazor discusses the efforts to merge four Jewish innovation incubator organizations into one organization: UpStart. Examining the effects of this merger on the broader Jewish community, Aliza also talks about her own career journey.

Episode 002: Mark S. Young, JTS – February 19th, 2017

mark_young_new_sqMark S. Young is passionate about advancing effective educational leadership in Jewish life. As managing director of the JTS Davidson School Leadership Commons, Mark builds relationships with community foundations, federations, and practitioners across the continent to make the Leadership Commons a space where “thinkers, doers, and visionaries” from all corners of Jewish education come together to learn, create, and collaborate for the common good of the Jewish people in North America.

Mark previously served as The Davidson School’s director of Alumni Engagement, launching new initiatives to benefit its 1,000 alumni, including the school’s recent 20th anniversary alumni celebration. Mark also served as program coordinator of the school’s Experiential Learning Initiative, launching the  Jewish Experiential Leadership Institute (JELI) for JCC professionals and advancing experiential learning within the school’s MA program.

Prior to joining JTS, Mark served as assistant director of human resources for Episcopal Social Services (ESS), human resources and volunteer programs manager for the 92nd Street Y, and head song-leader and Jewish educator for the Mandel JCC Camp Wise in northeast Ohio.

Mark serves on the board of JPRO Network and regularly publishes on how to best retain and invest in Jewish educators, including his $54,000 Strategy series on eJewishPhilanthropy and his 2016 ELI Talk: Mah Tovu.

Mark holds an MPA in Nonprofit Management and an MA in Hebrew and Judaic Studies from NYU as well as a BS in Psychology and Economics from McGill University.

Contact Mark:

(212) 678-8852
mayoung [at] jtsa.edu

Let Us Not Ask about Current Salary, We Should Not Care: A Concrete Step for the Jewish sector to Move Towards Pay Equity

The Podcast Episode:

Mark S. Young discusses his work in best HR practices and how he brings business models to the Jewish community.