Faculty

The Mandel Institute for Nonprofit Leadership’s core faculty, comprised of outstanding practitioners, scholars and educators, accompanies the Fellows throughout the entire program. In Israel, in addition to several members of the core faculty, Fellows study with faculty of the Mandel Foundation-Israel.

Alan Gill and Sarah Bunin Benor.
Devora Steinmetz and Daniel Pekarsky.

Mara Benjamin

Mara Benjamin is Irene Kaplan Leiwant Associate Professor of Jewish Studies at Mt. Holyoke College. She is the author of Rosenzweig’s Bible: Reinventing Scripture for Jewish Modernity (Cambridge University Press, 2009) and is a recipient of a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities for her most recent book, The Obligated Self: Maternal Subjectivity and Jewish Thought (Indiana University Press, 2018). She lives with her wife and two children in Northampton, MA.

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Asher Lopatin

Rabbi Asher Lopatin is the Rabbi of Congregation Kehillat Etz Chayim in Detroit, Michigan. He is also the President and Director of the Detroit National Center for Civil Discourse. He served most recently as  President of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah Rabbinical School, an Orthodox rabbinical school that teaches an inclusive, open and welcoming Torah. Previously, he was the spiritual leader of Anshe Sholom B’nai Israel Congregation, a modern Orthodox synagogue in Chicago, for 18 years. He received his rabbinic ordination from Rav Ahron Soloveichik and Yeshivas Brisk in Chicago, and from Yeshiva University, as a Wexner Graduate Fellow. A Rhodes Scholar with a M.Phil. in Medieval Arabic Thought from Oxford University, Rabbi Lopatin is the author of numerous scholarly and popular articles.

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David Stolow

David Stolow is the Faculty Director of the Public and Nonprofit MBA Program at Boston University Questrom School of Business. He teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in Nonprofit Management and Social Entrepreneurship, oversees the Dean’s Fellowship on Social Impact, and is co-lead instructor for the Certificate Program in Nonprofit Management and Leadership. Professor Stolow previously served 10 years as Director of Strategic Development at Citizen Schools, a national nonprofit network of extended-day and after-school programs. Prior to joining Citizen Schools, Professor Stolow worked as the Chief Financial Officer for Boston Community Capital, a leading Community Development Financial Institution. He has served in leadership positions for other highly esteemed nonprofits in the Boston area and he currently serves on the boards of numerous organizations. Professor Stolow graduated summa cum laude from Yale University and holds a Master’s Degree in Public and Private Management from the Yale School of Management.

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Deborah Ancona

Deborah Ancona is the Seley Distinguished Professor of Management, a Professor of Organization Studies, and the Founder of the MIT Leadership Center at the MIT Sloan School of Management. Her pioneering research into how successful teams operate has highlighted the critical importance of managing outside, as well as inside, the team’s boundary. Ancona’s work also focuses on the concept of distributed leadership and on the development of research-based tools, practices, and teaching/coaching models that enable organizations to foster creative leadership at every level. She is the author, most recently, of the book, X-Teams: How to Build Teams That Lead, Innovate, and Succeed (Harvard Business School Press) and the related articles, “In Praise of the Incomplete Leader” and “Nimble Leadership: Walking the Line Between Creativity and Chaos” (Harvard Business Review). Ancona has served as a consultant on leadership and innovation to companies such as Bristol-Myers Squibb, Bose, Takeda, Li & Fung, OCP, Accenture, ASA and has served on the Board of the Penn Graduate School of Education and a working group of the Canadian Council of Academies. Ancona holds a BA and an MS in psychology from the University of Pennsylvania and a PhD in management from Columbia University. Prof. Ancona is a visiting member of the Mandel Institute faculty for the year 2020.

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Sarah Bunin Benor

Sarah Bunin Benor is Professor of Contemporary Jewish Studies at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion, where she teaches masters students in the Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management and undergraduates at the University of Southern California. She is the author of Becoming Frum: How Newcomers Learn the Language and Culture of Orthodox Judaism (Rutgers University Press, 2012) and many articles about Jewish languages and culture. Professor Benor has received several fellowships and prizes, including the Dorot Fellowship in Israel, the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, and the Sami Rohr Choice Award for Jewish Literature. She is founding co-editor of the Journal of Jewish Languages and creator of the Jewish Language Research Website and the Jewish English Lexicon. Her current project examines Hebrew use at North American Jewish summer camps. Professor Benor received her Ph.D. from Stanford University in Linguistics in 2004.

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Dan Judson

Rabbi Judson was appointed Dean of the Hebrew College Rabbinical School in 2018. Previously, he oversaw the professional development program, and served as the placement director for the Rabbinical School. He received his doctorate in Jewish history from Brandeis University where his research focused on the history of American synagogue finances. His book, Pennies for Heaven: A History of American Synagogues and Money, was published in 2018. Dan served on the national faculty of the Union for Reform Judaism, consulting to synagogues across the country on financial matters. His research on synagogues which have eliminated dues was featured in The New York TimesThe Boston Globe, NPR, The New York Jewish Week, and Reform Judaism Magazine. He was also the Rabbi of Temple Beth David in Canton, MA for 10 years and co-authored a number of books on Jewish rituals for Jewish Lights Publishing, including: The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal and The Jewish Pregnancy Book: A Resource for the Soul, Body and Mind During Pregnancy, Birth and the First Three Months.

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Devora Steinmetz

Devora Steinmetz serves on the leadership team for special programs at Drisha Institute in the United States and Israel. Previously, she helped develop and taught in the Mandel Fellows and the Mandel Visionary Leadership programs, both of them the result of a collaboration between the Mandel Foundation and Hebrew Union College. Dr. Steinmetz has taught Talmud and Rabbinics at Drisha, the Jewish Theological Seminary, Yeshivat Hadar, and Havruta: a Beit Midrash at Hebrew University. Dr. Steinmetz is the founder of Beit Rabban, a Jewish day school profiled in Daniel Pekarsky’s Vision at Work: The Theory and Practice of Beit Rabban. She is the author of scholarly articles on Talmud, Midrash, and Bible as well as of two books, From Father to Son: Kinship, Conflict, and Continuity in Genesis and Punishment and Freedom: The Rabbinic Construction of Criminal Law. Dr. Steinmetz also works at Gould Farm, a therapeutic community for individuals in recovery from mental illness.

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Daniel Pekarsky

Daniel Pekarsky is a longtime consultant to the Mandel Foundation. He is a philosopher of education whose published work addresses questions in areas that relate to educational ethics, moral growth, John Dewey’s educational theory and Jewish education.  His book Vision at Work: The Theory and Practice of Beit Rabban (2006) brings these interests together in the course of examining the interplay between core purposes, practice, and evaluation in a thought-provoking example of a vision-guided Jewish day school. While pursuing his undergraduate and graduate studies, Dan worked in various capacities in Jewish education – first as a teacher, then as a congregational school principal, and after that as an Outreach Coordinator for the Hillel Foundation at the University of Michigan. Much later, he served as a consultant to Camp Ramah in Wisconsin. After earning a PhD in Education at Harvard University in 1976, Dan served as a professor at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Department of Educational Policy Studies and in the Mosse-Weinstein Center for Jewish Studies. In 2011, he transitioned into Emeritus status at the UW so that he could become more fully engaged with the work of the Mandel Foundation, with which he had long been involved.

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“As the world changes, our programs will change, but the need for enlightened, informed leadership will never go away.”

– Morton L. Mandel, Chairman and CEO, Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation –