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Staff

National Office

Edmund Case, Chief Executive Officer

Edmund Case graduated from Yale in 1972 and from Harvard Law School in 1975. He practiced law for 22 years and was chairman of the business litigation department of Testa, Hurwitz & Thibeault, a large Boston law firm. He served on the Board of Directors and the Executive Committee of Greater Boston Legal Services, the major provider of civil legal aid to the indigent in Greater Boston. In 1997 Case enrolled in the Heller-Hornstein Program at Brandeis University, graduating in May 1999 with a Master's in Jewish Communal Service and a Master's in Management. Case's fieldwork placements at the Hornstein Program involved working at Jewish Family & Children's Service on intermarriage programming, and staffing a new services to the intermarried committee at Combined Jewish Philanthropies. In June 2000, Case completed a three-year term as president of Temple Shalom of Newton, a 1,000-family Reform synagogue. He has served as a member of the URJ (Reform Movement) Northeast Regional Outreach Committee since 1993, and he and his wife and daughter have been panelists at outreach programs at URJ conventions. Case was a member of CJP's 1996 Task Force on Intermarriage and of CJP's 1997 Strategic Planning Sub-committee on Vibrancy and Inclusiveness.

Case is co-editor of The Guide to Jewish Interfaith Family Life: An InterfaithFamily.com Handbook (Jewish Lights Publishing, 2001) and has written widely on intermarriage issues.

In November 2001 Case was named to The Forward 50 list of top Jewish leaders. He is a frequent speaker on outreach issues, including in November 2002 at the United Jewish Communities' General Assembly, in June 2004 at the UJC's Hadesh West conference, in June 2005 at the American Jewish Press Association conference, in April 2006 at the Jewish Funders Network conference, in January 2007 at the conference of RAVSAK (the association of Jewish community day schools) and in November 2010 at the General Assembly of the Jewish Federations of North America.

Heather Martin, Chief Operating Officer

Heather has extensive marketing and operations experience in both the for-profit and non-profit worlds and a diverse background in consulting, project management, e-business, and web development. Prior to coming to InterfaithFamily, she was Vice President at Jewish Family & Life! and the Project Director for JFL's JSkyway online learning program. Heather's positions prior to JFL include Vice President of Marketing and co-owner of PeopleSite.com, an online search community helping reunite birthparents, family members, missing persons and friends, and Executive Vice President of Custom Internet Development, an Internet consultancy where she oversaw NewVantage's efforts to rapidly design, develop and deploy world class Internet solutions for their clients. Heather gained information technology strategy and consulting experience at IBM's Consulting Group where she worked with large Fortune 100 retail and consumer packaged goods clients. She holds a Masters of Science in Industrial Administration (MBA) from Carnegie Mellon's Graduate School of Industrial Administration and a Bachelor of Commerce Degree from McGill University. Heather is intermarried and lives in Franklin, Mass., with her husband Scott and sons Ryan and Asher.

Jodi Bromberg, President, InterfaithFamily

Jodi Bromberg is an attorney with a passion for interfaith issues and non-profit organizations. Prior to joining InterfaithFamily, Jodi ran her own two-person law firm, where she worked predominantly with non-profit organizations and small businesses. Previously, Jodi was an attorney at two large Philadelphia law firms, where her work focused on commercial litigation and transactional matters. As an adjunct instructor at Temple University’s Fox School of Business, Jodi created a new course, “Law for Non-profit Organizations,” and taught legal studies classes to undergraduate and graduate business students.

Before becoming a lawyer, Jodi had a successful career in the publishing industry, as the editorial director and executive editor of two national publishing companies serving the needs of commercial real estate executives. Among her accomplishments were launching two national magazines and an annual three-day conference, and speaking at national conferences.

Jodi received her law degree from the Temple University Beasley School of Law and holds a B.A. in Communication from the University of Pennsylvania. While raised in a Reform Jewish household in Springfield, N.J., she has extensive personal experience with her own entirely interfaith family, and has been thinking about interfaith issues since her grandmother took her to her Russian Orthodox church somewhere around 1979. Jodi is a proud alumni of URJ Camp Harlam, and JFTY Urban Mitzvah Corps (now NFTY Urban Mitzvah Corps New Jersey). She moved to Mass. from Pa. and lives with her partner and toddler twin sons (who think that challah is its own food group) in Natick, Mass., (though, she’s still an avid Yankees fan).

Stacie Garnett-Cook, National Director, InterfaithFamily/Your Community

Stacie joined InterfaithFamily in 2012 to support the growth of the InterfaithFamily/Your Community program. She has over 10 years of experience working in Boston's non-profits, bringing people together around issues they care about. She recently completed her master's in organization development from American University and has a passion for helping non-profits achieve their missions more effectively. Prior to coming to InterfaithFamily, Stacie worked at NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts where she managed multi-stakeholder coalitions addressing sexual and reproductive health. She also participated in the Jewish Organizing Initiative fellowship program, learning community organizing skills and working on social justice from a Jewish context, and worked as a community organizer at Massachusetts Senior Action Council, organizing senior citizens to fight for better health care. Stacie's interest in multi-faith issues began in college where she was a Jewish student representative on the Wellesley College Multi-Faith Council. When she's not in the office, Stacie enjoys yoga, folk music, and spending time with her husband, Andrew and their son, Sam. They live in Dedham, MA.

Lindsey Silken, Editorial Director

Lindsey has an extensive background in magazine publishing as a digital and print editor. Her career began at JFL Media’s JVibe magazine for Jewish teens, where she was editor-in-chief and oversaw the national magazine and website, and worked closely with teens in the community. Before returning to the Jewish non-profit sector at IFF, she held online editorial posts at Girls’ Life magazine and SAIL magazine. Lindsey spends a great deal of her time reading, blogging about books and writing essays and short fiction as well as sailing, snowboarding and traveling. She holds a master’s in creative writing from the Bennington Writing Seminars, and a BA in English and BFA in art from Connecticut College. She lives in Cambridge, MA.

Liz Polay-Wettengel, Director of Marketing & Communications

Liz is a veteran marketing professional with extensive experience in traditional marketing and publicity and a strong background in the online landscape. She began her professional marketing career in the music industry in the mid 1990s and in 2002 left New York City and moved to the Boston area to bring digital marketing to both the real estate and publishing markets. Since 2006, Liz has been immersed in the nonprofit world where she worked at Combined Jewish Philanthropies of greater Boston. At CJP, she introduced social marketing techniques and created the initial social media presence for the large non-profit. Once those basics were established, she co-created JewishBoston.com and served as the site's community manager.

A blogger since 1999, Liz is a well-known social media advocate and trainer. Passionate about marketing and digital communication, she is often sought after to speak about engaging communities and to teach best practices for using social media tools in both the corporate and non-profit segments. With a record of early technology adoption, she has built trusted relationships through many social media channels. When offline, Liz can be found with her family, enjoying the beauty of coastal Massachusetts. She is intermarried and lives in Salem, MA with her husband and two sons. You can find her tweeting at @LizPW.

Deb Morandi, Connections Coordinator

Deb Morandi is a highly motivated and creative organizational manager with extensive communication and community building skills. Prior to coming to InterfaithFamily, she was the Leadership Resource Development Coordinator at Jewish Family Service of Metrowest where she created programs for young families looking for a Jewish connection and grew the Jewish identity in those communities by 30%. She was also responsible for planning and developing events that would raise awareness and funds to support the work of JFS of Metrowest. Previously, Deb was a senior event consultant for an upscale event planning firm in Boston where she worked closely with couples and families to plan weddings and bat/bar mitzvahs. Deb holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of Kansas and is an avid Jayhawks fan! She is intermarried and lives in Franklin, MA with her husband, twin boys, and yellow lab.

Susan Edni, Administrator/Special Projects

Susan Edni was born and raised in London, where she was a medical defense legal executive for over 10 years. Susan then spent a few years in Israel where she taught English prior to meeting her Israeli husband Udi in New York on a two-night stopover. They returned to Israel for a year but since May 2002, Susan and Udi have lived very happily in Dover with their two children and dog! Susan has managed to hold on to her British accent and so too, she believes, her British sense of humor.

InterfaithFamily/Boston

Joshua Troderman, Director, InterfaithFamily/Boston

Josh is passionate about combining his love of all things creative with Jewish communal engagement. He graduated from The William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education at The Jewish Theological Seminary in 2005 and has a background in Cinema Production (Ithaca College, B.S. ’91) as well as Songwriting and Performance (Berklee College of Music, ‘01).

Josh created and developed JChoice.org in 2010 in order to help build stronger Jewish identities among the next generation by empowering students to create and implement meaningful mitzvah projects. In addition to his role as Director of InterfaithFamily/Boston, Josh is still the president and CEO of JChoice.

Josh has held teaching and administrative positions at The Rashi School (Newton, MA), The Kesher Community Hebrew School (Cambridge, MA) and Rodeph Sholom Day School (New York, NY) and has been a player with Storahtelling in New York. In addition to serving on the board of JChoice, Josh is a board member of ShalomTV and plays keyboards in The Heartsleeves and other musical projects in the Boston area. Josh is building a more inclusive Judaism in his own life, as he is happily intermarried and lives with his wife and two children in Brookline.

April Baskin, Project Manager, InterfaithFamily/Boston

April

April Baskin comes to IFF/Boston following three years working at the World Justice Project in Washington, DC, and serving as president of the Jewish Multiracial Network. She is an alumna of the Schusterman Insight Fellowship for Jewish Community and the Jeremiah Fellowship (Jews United for Justice). While an Insight Fellow from 2008-2010, April worked at Maryland Hillel, BBYO, and Moment Magazine. April earned a BA in sociology from Tufts University with concentrations in community health and social inequality, and received high honors for her thesis about Jews of Color. Previously, April was an Americorps fellow for an affiliate of the Black Ministerial Alliance of Greater Boston and a research assistant at the Kennedy School of Government. She enjoys sewing, canines of all shapes and sizes, and belly dancing.

Jonathon Feinberg, North Shore Ambassador, InterfaithFamily/Boston

Jonathon is excited to be IFF/Boston’s new North Shore Ambassador! Jonathon has been living, learning and playing music on the North Shore since moving to Lynn in 2011, and has found this region to be welcoming and engaged, both Jewishly and otherwise. He is excited to use the variety of outreach, research, writing and community organizing skills he has developed to help shape a Jewish community that finds beauty in its diversity, strength in its flexibility and longevity in its ability to welcome and include people from a variety of faith and personal backgrounds.

Since before his time as a 2003 Bronfman Youth Fellow in Israel, Jonathon has been deeply involved in the Jewish Community. He holds a master’s degree from Tufts University, and was the Coordinator of US Operations for Israel-based Jewish Environmental Education group Sviva Israel, where he managed and expanded the organization’s presence in US schools and federations. He published an article on collaboration among Jewish nonprofits in PresenTense Magazine and eJewish Philanthropy.

InterfaithFamily/Chicago

Rabbi Ari Moffic, Director, InterfaithFamily/Chicago

Ari Poster Moffic was ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2007. A graduate of Indiana University, she received Master's Degrees in Jewish Education and Jewish Studies from Baltimore Hebrew College. A native of Newton Massachusetts, Rabbi Moffic has an extensive background in Jewish family education -including writing for a Jewish family magazine, leading family retreats, and helping to start a family centered religious school. She has a special interest in working with interfaith couples and families. Identity formation, modern interpretations of culture and religion and making Jewish living accessible, relevant and meaningful are the areas that drive and inspire Rabbi Moffic. She believes in learning through doing and engaging the entire family in transformative Jewish experiences. She is married to Rabbi Evan Moffic, senior rabbi at Congregation Solel in Highland Park, Illinois. They are parents to Hannah born in 2007 and Tamir born in 2009.

Jennifer Falkenholm, Project Manager/Implementation Specialist, InterfaithFamily/Chicago

Before joining InterfaithFamily in 2012 to support InterfaithFamily/Chicago's community office, Jennifer spent over 10 years working for Accenture, a large global consulting company, in both their marketing and recruiting departments. She enjoys using her deep communication and organizational skills to define efficient processes and to deliver value to internal and external customers. Jennifer graduated from DePaul University with a Bachelors of Science degree in Marketing. She lives in the northwest suburbs of Chicago with her husband and two boys. When not at work, she enjoys going to the city with her family, jogging outdoors or reading a good book.

Susie Field, Assistant Project Manager, InterfaithFamily/Chicago

Susie Field enjoyed most of her career in finance, working for 14 years at LaSalle Bank in Chicago. After 7 years of Wealth Management and Community Development lending at LaSalle, she became part of its training team for commercial lending. Later she contracted with BMO Harris Bank’s Private Bank, aiding in its merger with M&I Bank of Wisconsin. In addition to her work at banks, she has volunteered for various programs including Contact Chicago, Thresholds Drop-In Center, Streetwise Newspaper, Ronald McDonald Youth Suicide Prevention and the Rogers Park Builders Committee. Susie and her husband, Steve, recently moved from the Lakeview neighborhood of Chicago to Northbrook with their two children.

InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia

Rabbi Robyn Frisch, Director, InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia

Robyn Frisch graduated from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania in 1988 and New York University School of Law in 1991. After practicing as a corporate lawyer in a large Philadelphia law firm for several years, Robyn decided to follow her passion and become a rabbi. She was ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2000. Since her ordination, Robyn has worked as a congregational rabbi, hospital chaplain, religious school director, family educator, adult education instructor, Rosh Hodesh group leader for teens, and Jewish day and overnight camp rabbi. She loves teaching and helping to make Judaism come alive for individuals, couples and families and empowering them to make Jewish rituals, practices and teachings a valuable part of their lives. She especially enjoys working with interfaith couples and families to create personal and meaningful life-cycle events.

Robyn grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs and has lived in the area with her family since 2001. Robyn serves as the spiritual leader of Temple Menorah Keneseth Chai, the oldest synagogue in northeast Philadelphia, where she has been since 2008. Robyn loves spending time with her husband and three children. She also enjoys practicing yoga and mindfulness meditation, reading and biking.

Wendy Armon, Director, Community Relations, InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia

Wendy Ellison Armon brings over fifteen years experience in the areas of management consulting and grant writing, plus her strong communication and organizational skills, to InterfaithFamily. As the Director of InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia, she enjoys developing new projects and engaging in new collaborations throughout the Philadelphia community. With an undergraduate degree in English from Brandeis University and a master's degree in Public Management from University of Maryland, she appreciates the opportunity to apply these skills in the nonprofit community. Wendy has lived in Philadelphia for over ten years has been very active in synagogue and community life in Philadelphia. As a conservative Jew, she is delighted to work towards creating a welcoming community for interfaith families.

Wendy enjoys spending time with her husband, three kids and occasionally participates in community theater. She enjoys hiking, biking, kayaking and time at the beach.

Robin Warsaw, Project Manager, InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia

Robin Warsaw joined InterfaithFamily/Philadelphia in 2012. She began work with the interfaith community in 2011 as the project manager for InterFaithways in Philadelphia, PA. She has 18 years of experience working as an IT professional, including software development, classroom teaching, website design and development, and video and photo editing. She's excited to use both her technical skills and community outreach experience to connect interfaith couples and families with resources in the Philadelphia area. Robin is a member of the Board of Trustees at her synagogue in Elkins Park, PA, where she is active in the religious school and on the membership committee. She enjoys tennis, hiking, cooking, yoga, and spending time with her husband and two children.

 

InterfaithFamily/San Francisco Bay Area

Mychal Copeland, Director, InterfaithFamily/San Francisco

Rabbi Mychal Copeland worked in two Hillels for the past 13 years, UCLA and more recently, Stanford University. In 1995, she earned a Masters in Theological Studies and Secondary Teaching Credential from Harvard Divinity School, and a rabbinical degree from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2000. Mychal is the founder of a national Rosh Hodesh (new moon) project for teens, It’s a Girl Thing, and is a certified yoga instructor who fuses Jewish spirituality with movement in her yoga teaching. She writes a monthly Torah column for the J: Jewish News Weekly of Northern California. She is passionate about opening the doors of Judaism wider and leading people toward a profound spiritual and religious life that embraces all of their disparate identities. She lives with her partner of 20 years in Mountain View, California, with their two sons.

Marilyn Wacks, Project Manager, InterfaithFamily/San Francisco

Marilyn Wacks brings twelve years of nonprofit and government communications, technology and community relations experience to her role as Project Manager for InterfaithFamily/Bay Area. Previously, she worked as a Policy Manager on equity issues for low income Californians, leading stakeholder advocacy activities, and the organization’s communications, technology and fundraising initiatives. For seven years, Marilyn was a Special Assistant to the late Congressman Tom Lantos in his San Mateo, California district office. Marilyn also has extensive private sector experience in marketing communications, project management and technology process implementation. She has a B.S. in Human Services and a certificate in Conflict Resolution and Mediation. As recent newlyweds, Marilyn and her husband are creating a blended Reform and Orthodox Jewish household. She and her husband feel that their differences enhance their spiritual practice and that their relationship is a thriving beta site for religious pluralism. Marilyn recently finished a comprehensive website rebuild for Congregation Beth Israel Judea in San Francisco where she and her husband are members.

Consultants

Rabbi Lev Baesh, Director, Resource Center for Jewish Clergy

Rabbi Lev Baesh was ordained by the Reform Movement in 1994 in Cincinnati. He can also be found teaching Introduction to Judaism Courses for the Outreach division of the Reform movement in the Boston area, as well as national and world traveling to celebrate interfaith-Jewish weddings. Baesh served as rabbi for Temple Israel of Dover, N.H., from 1994-2006 and served as interim rabbi for Congregation Beit Ahavah in Northampton, Mass., in 2006 and 2007.  While serving the congregation in Dover, Lev was also the Jewish chaplain at the University of New Hampshire and a member of several interfaith councils. His focus throughout his congregational work was welcoming all who wanted "Jewish" as part of their lives. InterfaithFamily is a natural fit for this high-spirited, knowledgeable and welcoming rabbi.

Baesh lives with his partner Andrew, who joined the Jewish world a few years into their relationship. You can read about their early life in The Guide to Jewish Interfaith Family Life: An InterfaithFamily.com Handbook in the chapter about "Gay and Interfaith." Baesh has contributed several articles to our web site and has been helpful in the creation of our wedding guide for interfaith couples.

Prior to life as a rabbi, Baesh was an attorney with the Children's Aid Society in New York, and coordinated their Manhattan project of PINS Mediation with parents and teens. Baesh is a graduate of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Class of 1994, Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law at Yeshiva University class of 1987 (accepted in the New York and Connecticut Bar Associations) and Clark University class of 1984. Baesh was accepted and attended Bangor Theological Seminary's Doctor of Ministry program until he decided to leave congregational work.

And for those who knew Baesh prior to 1998, when he changed his name after attending a Jewish story-teller's retreat, you will remember him as Wesley Michael Odell. Baesh is a fifth generation rabbi in the United States — of which three are Reform and two Lubavitch — on his mother's side and a second generation attorney on his father's side.

Karen Kushner, InterfaithFamily/San Francisco

In August of 2003, Karen began developing resources for synagogues in a newly funded organization known as Project Welcome. For five years, Project Welcome worked with congregations of all denominations to help them increase the warmth of their welcome to Jews, interfaith families, the LGBT community and everyone seeking a home in Judaism. Project Welcome evolved into the Jewish Welcome Network in the fall of 2008, continuing to provide training workshops and resources to the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish community. In August 2010, InterfaithFamily added the training workshops and resources of the Jewish Welcome Network to its offerings and brought Karen on as the Chief Education Officer.

Previously, Karen worked as a family educator and therapist, specializing in the self-healing power of families for 27 years, and has lectured widely. For over twenty years, she taught religious school to teenagers and primary students and designed a Hebrew curriculum for second graders learning with their parents. She has co-authored, with Anita Diamant, How to Raise a Jewish Child: No Experience Necessary. And, with her husband, Lawrence Kushner, she has written Because Nothing Looks Like God, Where is God, What Does God Look Like and How Does God Make Things Happen. She is the mother of three adult children and grandmother of three.

 Former Editors

 

Derived from the Greek word for "assembly," a Jewish house of prayer. Synagogue refers to both the room where prayer services are held and the building where it occurs. In Yiddish, "shul." Reform synagogues are often called "temple." Plural form of the Hebrew word "mitzvah" which means "commandment," it has two meanings. The first are the commandments given in the Torah. ("You should obey the mitzvah of honoring your parents!") The second is a good deed. ("Helping her carry her groceries home was such a mitzvah!") Hebrew, literally, for "sitting," refers to a Jewish educational institution that focuses on the study of traditional religious texts (including Torah and Talmud study). A yeshiva can be a day school for elementary or high school students, or a place of study for adults. Traditionally, a yeshiva was attended by boys/men only; more recently, yeshivas have opened for girls/women and even co-ed yeshivas now exist. Hebrew for "candelabrum" or "lamp," it usually refers to the nine-branched candelabrum that is lit for the holiday of Hanukkah. (A seven-branched candelabrum, a symbol of the ancient Temple in Jerusalem, is a symbol of Judaism and is included in Israel's coat of arms.) Hebrew for "commandment," it has two meanings. The first are the commandments given in the Torah. ("You should obey the mitzvah of honoring your parents!") The second is a good deed. ("Helping her carry her groceries home was such a mitzvah!") A bread that comes in a few different varieties; its most common variation is a braided egg bread, though there are water challahs that don't have eggs, and there are whole-wheat challahs which sometimes also don't have eggs. It is customary to being Sabbath and holiday meals by saying blessings and eating challah. A language of West Semitic origins, culturally considered to be the language of the Jewish people. Ancient or Classical Hebrew is the language of Jewish prayer or study. Modern Hebrew was developed in the late-19th and early 20th centuries as a revival language; today it is spoken by most Israelis.
Reform synagogues are often called "temple." "The Temple" refers to either the First Temple, built by King Solomon in 957 BCE in Jerusalem, or the Second Temple, which replaced the First Temple and stood on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem from 516 BCE to 70 CE. North American Federation of Temple Youth, the youth group of Judaism's Reform movement in North America. It offers local and regional youth groups, summer programs and post-high school programs.
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