Rabbi Elie Kaunfer
Rabbi Elie Kaunfer is co-founder, rosh yeshiva and executive director of Mechon Hadar and on the Talmud faculty at Yeshivat Hadar. A graduate of Harvard College, he was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he also completed an MA and is pursuing a doctorate in liturgy. A Wexner Graduate Fellow, Elie is a co-founder of Kehilat Hadar and in 2009 Newsweek named him one of the top 50 rabbis in America. He was selected as an inaugural AVI CHAI Fellow, and is the author of Empowered Judaism: What Independent Minyanim Can Teach Us About Building Vibrant Jewish Communities (Jewish Lights, 2010).
Click here to learn more about Empowered Judaism: What Independent Minyanim Can Teach Us About Building Vibrant Jewish Communities.
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Rabbi Shai Held
Rabbi Shai Held is Co-Founder, Dean and Chair in Jewish Thought at Mechon Hadar. Before that, he served for six years as Scholar-in-Residence at Kehilat Hadar in New York City, and taught both theology and Halakha at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He also served as Director of Education at Harvard Hillel. A renowned lecturer and educator, Shai is a 2011 recipient of the Covenant Award for excellence in Jewish education. He has taught for institutions such as Drisha, Me'ah, Combined Jewish Philanthropies, and the Rabbinic Training Institute, and currently serves on the faculty of the Wexner Heritage program. Shai has a PhD in religion from Harvard; his main academic interests are in modern Jewish and Christian thought and in the history of Zionism. His book, Abraham Joshua Heschel: The Call of Transcendence is due out from Indiana University Press in the fall 2013.
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Avital Campbell Hochstein is rosh yeshiva at Mechon Hadar and teaches Talmud at Yeshivat Hadar. She is the former rosh kollel at the Pardes Institute. A research fellow at Mechon Shalom Hartman, she has taught Talmud for several years at both institutions and was rosh beit midrash at the new Hartman High School for Girls. She is the co-author of The Place of Women in Midrash (Yedioth Ahronoth 2008). Avital is also a founder of Kehilat Shirah Hadashah in Jerusalem.
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Rabbi Jason Rubenstein
Jason Rubenstein is Dean of Students at Yeshivat Hadar, where he also teaches Talmud and Jewish thought. Jason was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary in May of 2011
, and also holds an MA
in Talmud from JTS and a AB in Social Studies from Harvard
College. An alumnus of the kollel of Yeshivat Ma'ale Gilboa
, the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, the Legacy Heritage Rabbinic Fellows program at JTS, and the Graduate Fellowship in Jewish Law and Legal Theory of the Cardozo Center for Jewish Law, Jason has also led multiple programs for the Nesiya Institute.Email Rabbi Jason Rubenstein
Aviva Richman is a faculty member at Yeshivat Hadar. She has taught at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles, and she is a past Rosh Kollel of the Bet Midrash at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin. She has also enjoyed teaching community-wide sessions for the Hadar Bet Midrash and at the National Havurah Institute. She studied in the Pardes Kollel and the Drisha Scholars' Circle and is currently completing semikhah studies with a private teacher. Particular interests include Halakhah, gender and sexuality in Judaism and niggunim. She is currently pursuing a PhD in Rabbinics at NYU.
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Mindy Schachtman is Director of Institutional Advancement at Mechon Hadar. Prior to joining the Mechon Hadar team, she served as the Director of Institutional Advancement for Yeshiva University High Schools and Yeshiva University's Program for Jewish Genetic Health. Mindy's experience in fundraising also includes positions at the Brooklyn College Foundation and as a consultant for Community Counselling Service LLC. Mindy holds Bachelors Degrees from Columbia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary.
Rabbi Ethan Tucker
Rabbi Ethan Tucker is co-founder and rosh yeshiva at Mechon Hadar and chair in Jewish Law. Ethan was a faculty member at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education, where he taught Talmud and Halakhah in the Scholars Circle. Ethan was ordained by the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and earned a PhD in Talmud and Rabbinics from the Jewish Theological Seminary and a B.A. from Harvard College. A Wexner Graduate Fellow, he was a co-founder of Kehilat Hadar and a winner of the first Grinspoon Foundation Social Entrepreneur Fellowship. He was named one of America’s Top 50 Rabbis by Newsweek in 2011 and 2012.
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Abigail Uhrman is an advanced doctoral student in Education and Jewish Studies at New York University. Abigail did her undergraduate work at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she graduated summa cum laude and a member of Phi Beta Kappa with a major in history and a minor in education. Following graduation, she spent two years as a fellow at the Drisha Institute. Abigail then worked at the Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan, first as a fifth grade teacher and later as a literacy coach and new teacher mentor. Upon completing her doctoral coursework, Abigail served as a program officer at the Steinhardt Foundation and as adjunct faculty at NYU. Last fall, Abigail began a two-year research fellowship at the Davidson School of Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Abigail lives in Huntington, New York with her husband, Cantor Israel Gordan, and their daughter, Noa.
Dena Weiss is a faculty member at Yeshivat Hadar. She earned a BA in Religious Studies from New York University and an MA in Theology from Harvard Divinity School. She has studied and taught in a variety of Jewish educational settings including Drisha, Midreshet Lindenbaum, and Pardes. She currently serves as the editor in chief of the Mima'amakim journal of Jewish religious art.
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