Faculty

Jethro Berkman

Jethro Berkman is the Director of the Educational Leadership Program and a Program Officer in Jewish Education at the Mandel Institute for Nonprofit Leadership. Before joining the Foundation, Rabbi Berkman worked at Gann Academy for eleven years, most recently as Dean of Jewish Education. He is a graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and a member of the Reform movement’s Central Conference of American Rabbis. He also studied at the Yakar Center for Tradition and Creativity, the Harvard Divinity School, the Hebrew University, the Pardes Institute, the Conservative Yeshiva and Machon Schechter. Prior to his studies at RRC, Rabbi Berkman spent three years living in Israel, both studying and working for Seeds of Peace, an organization that helps teenagers from regions of conflict learn peacemaking skills. Rabbi Berkman also worked with children with special needs in the Boston Public Schools and volunteered for the community service program City Year Boston.
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Tova Birnbaum

Director of Jewish Content at the Oshman Family JCC in Palo Alto. A graduate of the Mandel Executive Leadership Program, Tova is a teacher of Rabbinic Literature, a Judaic studies lecturer, a Theater Midrash workshop facilitator and a secular Jewish lifecycle ceremonies officiant. She is also an actress and a Jewish performance artist. Tova is one of the founders of the BINA Secular Yeshiva in Tel Aviv and served as the Central Shlicha (emissary), Director of the North America Region of the World Zionist Organization.
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Jonathan Krasner

Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Chair of Jewish Education Research at Brandeis University. Jonathan is a two-time winner of the National Jewish Book Award for Hebrew Infusion: Language and Community at American Jewish Summer Camps and The Benderly Boys in American Jewish Education. He is former chair of the Network for Research in Jewish Education and was named as a 2012 finalist for the Sami Rohr Prize for Jewish Literature. He is currently working on a history of the American Jewish Day School movement and was the recipient of the Sylvia and Moshe Ettenberg Prize of the Network for Research in Jewish Education to support his research. 
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Devora Steinmetz

Faculty for the Mandel Institute for Nonprofit Leadership and the Hebrew College rabbinical school. Devora 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. Devora has served on the faculty of Drisha, the Jewish Theological Seminary, Yeshivat Hadar, and Havruta: a Beit Midrash at Hebrew University.
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