Our Team

Get to know our experienced team of professionals.

Matan is proud to have a uniquely qualified team, bringing together professionals and lay leaders with diverse backgrounds in order to make Jewish inclusion possible across North America.

Professional Staff

section_16-img
Dori Frumin Kirshner
Executive Director
section_16-img
Stacey Fromowitz
Finance Manager
section_16-img
Jennifer Gendel
Program Manager
section_16-img
Talia Horan-Block
Operations Manager
section_16-img
Gabrielle Joseph
Program Specialist
section_16-img
Johannah Noon
Interim Development Manager
section_16-img
Meredith Polsky
Senior Director of Programs and Partnerships
section_16-img
Bethany Spector
Marketing and Communications Manager
section_16-img
Michelle Steinhart
Program Manager
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Dori Frumin Kirshner
Executive Director

Dori Frumin Kirshner has served as Matan’s Executive Director since 2009, and has been part of Matan’s administrative team since 2007. Dori has increased Matan’s organizational budget by 400%, propelling Matan from a local, direct service organization to a national leader in the field of Jewish disability inclusion. Recognizing that Jewish children with disabilities grow up to be Jewish adults with disabilities, Dori has also established Matan as an organization that focuses on inclusion throughout the lifespan. Prior to coming to Matan, Dori worked at UJA-Federation of New York for seven years, in both planning and fundraising capacities. Dori began her professional career at The Solomon Schechter School of Manhattan as a bi-lingual educator (Hebrew and English). Dori holds a MA in Education from The Jewish Theological Seminary of America and a BA in Sociology and Judaic Studies from Emory University. Dori is a sought-after national speaker on Jewish inclusion, often called upon to serve as an expert on panels and deliver speeches that elevate the importance of disability inclusion in the Jewish community. Dori has published articles and Op-Ed’s in such publications as The New York Jewish Week and eJewishPhilanthropy.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Stacey Fromowitz
Finance Manager

Stacey Fromowitz has been Matan’s Finance Manager since 2016. She has worked in the accounting field for over 25 years and been involved with nonprofit organizations for almost 15 years. In addition to her work with Matan, Stacey is a paraprofessional for PKF O’Connor Davies in Woodcliff Lake, NJ.
Stacey graduated from Drexel University with a dual Bachelor of Science in Marketing and Human Resources. She and her husband live in Rockland County, NY with their two children.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Jennifer Gendel
Program Manager

Jennifer Gendel’s quarter century in education has included significant success as teacher, elementary principal, district administrator and college professor. As one of Matan’s Program Managers, Jennifer conducts professional development sessions as well as mentors participants in the Matan Institute.

Jennifer partners with synagogues, camps, schools and other organizations dedicated to including individuals with disabilities into their communities. Most recently, as a partner of the Ruderman Family Foundation and the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism, Jennifer supported inclusion in over 600 member synagogues and youth movement (USY) groups. In addition, she served as the coordinator of the Shifting the Paradigm Project at Or Shalom in Vernon Hills, a project sponsored by Jewish United Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. In this role, she helped to create a model for children and their families that will allow them to experience authentic and meaningful experiences along their Jewish journeys.

Jennifer earned her Bachelor of Science in Special Education from Boston University, her Master of Arts in Early Childhood Education from National-Louis University, and her Doctorate in Education in Leadership and Supervision from Loyola University of Chicago. Her research and professional interests are focused on providing high-quality professional development for teachers and administrators who support all learners.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Talia Horan-Block
Operations Manager

Talia Horan–Block joined the Matan team in the spring of 2024 as Operations Manager. Most recently, she served as the Associate Director of Camp Young Judaea Sprout Lake for the past 17 years, where she played a pivotal role in shaping the experiences of countless young campers. Her work contributed significantly to the growth and transformation of Sprout Lake into the vibrant community it is today, inclusive of two-day camps. Prior to Sprout Lake, Talia worked for Planned Parenthood in Detroit as a Health Educator. There, she empowered individuals with knowledge and resources to make informed decisions about their health, advocating for reproductive rights and comprehensive healthcare access for all.

Talia holds a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree from the University of Michigan, complementing her undergraduate studies also completed at the University of Michigan. She and her husband live in New York City with their two kids and dog, Lola.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Gabrielle Joseph
Program Specialist

Gaby Joseph joined the Matan team in 2023 after almost a decade of working in the disability and inclusion space. Gaby is a trained special education teacher with experience working in a variety of public educational settings, including self contained Autism classrooms and inclusive preschool programs. In addition to teaching, Gaby has served as an inclusion specialist for religious school programs, provided 1:1 tutoring to children with significant cognitive disabilities, and facilitated professional development sessions for Jewish early childhood centers.

In addition to working at Matan, Gaby serves as a learning specialist at a charter school in Providence, Rhode Island and is a graduate of the Rhode Island Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and other Related Disabilities program (RI LEND). She is excited to use all of these opportunities to deepen her scope of practice working with interdisciplinary teams supporting the inclusion and integration of all people with disabilities.

Gaby has her Bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Franklin and Marshall College and her Masters Degree in Special Education with a concentration in severe and profound disabilities and autism spectrum disorder from Johns Hopkins University.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Johannah Noon
Interim Development Manager

Johannah Noon has dedicated her career to Jewish engagement and community enrichment. She finds immense fulfillment in this work, which she regards as her personal calling. Her journey began in college as a student of Hillel at Arizona State University, where she discovered her passion. Over the years, Johannah has had the privilege of working with diverse age groups, from infants to adults, fostering vibrant Jewish experiences. Her professional endeavors have spanned a range of environments, including religious schools, synagogues, camps, Hillel, and Jewish day schools.
Johannah brings extensive expertise in strategic planning, change management, curriculum development, institutional advancement, and facilitation. She excels in coordinating and inspiring both lay and professional leadership, contributing to the growth and vitality of organizations.
Johannah is a proud mom to three exceptional human beings and wife to an unbelievably supportive husband, Dan.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional staff

Meredith Polsky
Senior Director of Programs and Partnerships

Meredith Englander Polsky co-founded Matan in 2000 and currently serves as Matan’s Senior Director of Programs and Partnerships. A 2017 Covenant Award winner, Meredith has published articles in various print and online publications, including The Washington Jewish Week and eJewishPhilanthropy.

Meredith is a nationally sought-after speaker on Jewish Disability Inclusion and is often called upon as an expert voice in the field. She teaches courses in Jewish Special Education at Gratz College and from 2014-2021 Meredith served as the part-time inclusion specialist at Gan Ami, a Jewish early childhood program in Rockville, MD. She is a licensed clinical social worker at her own private practice, Counseling Out Loud, specializing in Selective Mutism.

Meredith holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Michigan, a Master of Arts in Early Childhood Special Education from Bank Street College, a Master of Arts in Clinical Social Work from Columbia University and a graduate certificate in Early Intervention from Georgetown University. She is co-author of the award-winning I Have a Question children’s book series (Jessica Kingsley Publishers), helping children with special needs (and all children!) grapple with difficult topics. Meredith lives in the Washington, DC area with her husband and three children.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Bethany Spector
Marketing and Communications Manager

Bethany Spector joined the Matan professional staff in the summer of 2023 as Matan’s first full-time Marketing and Communications Manager. Prior to this role, Bethany worked for 18 “chai” years at Pardes Jewish Day School in Scottsdale, AZ. During her time at Pardes, she spent eight years teaching fourth grade, five years serving as Director of Admissions, and five years establishing and leading the marketing and communications department as Director of Strategic Communications. Previously, she taught fifth and sixth grades at a local charter school in Phoenix as well as in the Montgomery County (Maryland) Public Schools.
Bethany earned her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Washington University in St. Louis and her Master of Arts in Education with a focus in elementary education from Johns Hopkins University. Bethany lives in Phoenix, AZ with her husband and two teenage children. When not working, you can often find her spending time with family, walking her dogs, reading, and cheering for the Phoenix Suns!

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Professional Staff

Michelle Steinhart
Program Manager

Michelle Steinhart is a Program Manager at Matan. She has worked in Jewish education and Jewish Special Education for over 30 years, in both formal and informal settings. In addition to her work at Matan, Michelle serves as the Director of Learning and Inclusion at Temple Israel Center in White Plains, NY.
Michelle graduated from Yeshiva University’s Stern College for Women with a Bachelor of Arts in Education and an Associate’s Degree in Judaic Studies. Michelle went on to earn her Master of Arts in Special Education at Hunter College of the City of New York. Michelle has led professional development sessions for various synagogues, schools and agencies and serves as a consultant for synagogues working to build inclusivity in their communities. Michelle was a 2002 recipient of the Grinspoon Steinhardt Award for Excellence in Jewish Education. Michelle and her husband Yaakov live in Rockland County, NY with their children.

section_16-slider-img

Matan Consultants

section_16-img
Rafi Josselson
section_16-img
Marta Nemesh
section_16-img
Stephanie Slater
section_16-img
Rebecca Wanatick
Back to team overview

Matan Consultants

Rafi Josselson

Rafi Josselson is an autistic junior at the Leffell School in Westchester County. Rafi has spoken at multiple places across the Northeast, including Solomon Schechter Day School of Bergen County, Temple Israel Center, and the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School. He also has written blogs for Matan and for his own website (https://www.rafijosselson.com/). Rafi hopes to spread a message of Empathy, Inclusion, Awareness, and Acceptance through his work. Outside of autism advocacy, Rafi is the co-president of his shul’s USY Chapter, a counselor at Ramah Day Camp in Nyack, managing editor for his school’s newspaper, and an avid reader of both books and the news.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Matan Consultants

Marta Nemesh

Marta Nemesh, a Matan consultant, presenter and coach, is an enthusiastic lead educator with a Master’s in early childhood education, curriculum and learning. With 20 years of experience in formal and experiential education in the form of early childhood, adolescents, and young adults. She works as an educator in an early childhood setting and is a creator and facilitator of workshops and professional development in play-based learning, child behavior & problem-solving, emergent curriculum, child development, and early childhood space design. Marta also coaches families, administrators, and teachers in identifying the individual needs of a program, teacher, or child and creating appropriate supports and tools to promote their needs and growth.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview
Stephanie Slater

Stephanie Slater, MSW is a social worker who has worked in the field of Early Childhood Development and Early Intervention for 30 years. The beginning of her career introduced her to the benefits of early intervention and early detection, where she spearheaded the expansion of a birth-three program in a publicly funded, private school in Brooklyn, New York. Her family’s move to the DC-area led her to Adas Israel Congregation’s Gan HaYeled Preschool, where she has remained for 20 years. Through individual consultations and community-wide webinars, Stephanie has supported countless families navigating parenthood, and has significantly grown Gan HaYeled’s capabilities for supporting young children with developmental differences and neurodiverse learning profiles. Her work laid the foundation for a culture of developmental diversity and inclusion, and her vast network of clinicians in the DMV area has supported students and propelled them toward an upward trajectory for future learning. Her most recent accomplishments include the opening of a multidisciplinary evaluation center for children 12 months to 5-years-old, and a therapeutic learning group, aimed to prepare neurodiverse preschoolers as they get ready to matriculate to kindergarten; both housed within the synagogue-based preschool where she works. These initiatives were created to support families as they navigate the confusion around early childhood diagnoses and change the course of their long-term needs. Stephanie also serves as a consultant for the Matan Institute, where she develops workshop curricula and trains teachers on the benefits of early identification and intervention, while also supporting the social and emotional needs of the students.

Stephanie believes young children are competent, capable, and resilient. She relishes in their untarnished view of the world and is delighted by the joy they bring to every experience. Stephanie affirms that a child’s behavior speaks volumes and understanding its message and responding accordingly can have long term impacts on their self concept and overall well being.

Stephanie holds a BA in Psychology from SUNY College at Oneonta and a Masters in Social Work from Adelphi University. Stephanie has a Certificate in Early Intervention from Georgetown University, and is a Certified Children’s Yoga instructor. Her most rewarding role is mother to Sophie (23) and Macie (19) and partner to Matt.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Matan Consultants

Rebecca Wanatick

Rebecca Wanatick is a Matan consultant, presenter and long-time Matan Institute Mentor. She received her Ed.M. in Special Education from Boston University and a BA in both Elementary and Special Education from University of Hartford. Rebecca is also employed by Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest NJ as the Director of Disability Inclusion & Belonging, where she has been for more than 15 years. The department she leads, Greater MetroWest ABLE (Access, Belonging and Life Enrichment for People with Disabilities and Their Families), engages families, synagogues, schools and agencies in the Greater MetroWest community in creating a Jewish community that is accessible to all members. Rebecca has been married to her husband for 30 years and together they have two sons.

section_16-slider-img

Board of Directors

section_16-img
Tami Reiss
President
section_16-img
Joshua Cohen
section_16-img
Sharyn J. Gallatin
section_16-img
Alexander Gelski
section_16-img
Eileen Lieberman
section_16-img
Miriam Mark
section_16-img
Craig S. Maurer
Treasurer
section_16-img
Rachel Orgel
Vice President
section_16-img
Leslie Epstein Pearson
Secretary
section_16-img
Kenneth A. Plevan
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Tami Reiss
President

Tami Reiss is a product strategy leader with almost 20 years of experience helping startups, established enterprise companies, and community profit organizations define their product strategy and set up organizations for scale. She has held many product roles within B2B SaaS startups and consulted with companies such as Humana, Aetna, JPMorgan, TheKnotWW, Cornerstone on Demand among dozens of others which adds to her ability to understand different perspectives and various industries.

Recently, she was the lead strategy and training consultant for Melissa Perri’s ProduxLabs and CPO-in-Residence for Insight Partners. She advised CEOs, CPOs, VPs of Product on how to develop a cohesive product strategy, transform organizations, and communicate to their board. Occasionally she acted as interim VP of Product at Insight portfolio companies. Organizations such as Kellogg School of Management and Wharton have utilized Tami as a guest lecturer and developer of curriculum for coursework in strategy and management.

As a side project, Tami launched Just Not Sorry, a Gmail plug-in used by half a million people around the globe to write more confident emails. She is also the President of the board of Matan, a non-profit dedicated to creating inclusive and equitable spaces for people with disabilities in the Jewish community.

Right now, Tami is focusing on coaching up and coming product leaders, speaking around the world about management and strategy, blogging about leadership, and writing a children’s book called What do Product Managers Do? She likes to say that her background in physiology helps her be a systems thinker and that her first work experience as a fundraiser and event planner helped her learn the importance of collaborative product development towards a strict launch date.

Tami now lives with her husband Nadav and two kids in Florida, but has spent half her life in Los Angeles and New York City. She loves to travel (47 states and 44 countries and counting!), speaks Hebrew and some Spanish, and considers herself a citizen of the world.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Joshua Cohen

Joshua Cohen is a Certified Public Accountant with over fifteen years of experience in accounting. As a CPA Joshua provides a mix of tax compliance, planning, business management and consulting services with specialties in Entertainment, Real Estate, Family Businesses, Entrepreneurial owners and individuals and families. Joshua loves being an accountant as he gets to help individuals every day and is constantly solving new, often complex puzzles. Joshua is a CPA at Mann Gelon Glodney Gumerove Yee LLP in Century City. Joshua got involved in Matan as he was diagnosed at age 32 with Epilepsy and has a specific point of view to help individuals with disabilities from his own experience and his families experience in supporting Joshua. Joshua‘s wife Jaclyn is a Rabbi in Los Angeles, and they have two kids.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Sharyn J. Gallatin

Sharyn J. Gallatin has been involved in the special needs arena for almost twenty-five years, having maintained her own law practice which specialized in estate planning and special needs advocacy for over 20 years and as an advocate for her son, Joshua, who was diagnosed on the autistic spectrum at just under two years old. After realizing the need to advocate on his behalf, Sharyn realized this work could be done for other families and put her law degree to work, many times in a pro bono capacity. Sharyn has presented on several special needs panels in New Jersey and Michigan. Currently, Sharyn primarily focuses her professional efforts on fundraising.

Sharyn has held numerous volunteer board positions in her more than thirty-year volunteer career for such organizations as Jewish Federations in New Jersey, New York and Michigan, Jewish Family Services in Metro Detroit, several women’s advocacy organizations, the Detroit Children’s Choir and Embrace Her Legacy. Sharyn received her undergraduate degree from Montclair State University, where she majored in political science and her law degree from Fordham University School of Law. She was born and raised in northern New Jersey and is the proud mother of Joshua and Rose. She currently resides in Fair Lawn, New Jersey.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Alexander Gelski

Originally from Australia, Alexander Gelski is a partner at Kirkland & Ellis LLP where he has over ten years of experience in the Government & Internal Investigations Practice Group. Previously, Alexander served as Director in Asset Management Senior Regulatory Specialist for the Americas at UBS as well as an Associate and Senior Associate at Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom. Matan’s mission speaks to Alexander as he has nephews on the autism spectrum, and both his mother and sister were longtime Jewish day school educators. Alexander earned his undergraduate degree from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia and his LLM degree from New York University. He lives with his husband Matthew in New York where they are intended parents currently waiting to be matched with a surrogate to start their own family journey.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Eileen Lieberman

Eileen Lieberman has traveled extensively around the world including all seven continents and has lived in multiple locations, but for the past 24 years she has resided in Harrison, NY as well as having an apartment in New York City and a condo in Aventura, Fl.. Wherever she has lived, keeping a kosher home and belonging to at least one synagogue has been paramount. Eileen has served on several not-for-profit boards throughout the years. Currently she is on the board of Matan, her synagogue and the Manhattan Solomon Schechter. She is actively involved In the Tikvah Program at Camp Ramah in the Berkshires, a program for children with special needs. She has been happily married for 52 years and is fortunate to have two married children and four loving grandchildren.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Miriam Mark

Miriam Mark is a revenue growth leader and go to market specialist who serves in an advisory and fractional capacity to leading technology and non-profit companies. She has grown up alongside the tech ecosystem, running sales at multiple start-ups. Miriam served as Global Head of Account Management and Growth Enablement at WeWork and, as part of the core team, was instrumental in building their global sales organization from acquisition to retention and growth. Earlier in her career, she led sales at Farmigo, an online farmers market, with the mission to transform and accelerate global adoption of an alternative food system. She began her career at Shopping.com, an online comparison shopping company which was acquired by eBay. Miriam is passionate about creating equal educational opportunities for all children regardless of ability. She lives in Los Angeles with her husband and 4 children ages 9-19. Her oldest child has special needs.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Craig S. Maurer
Treasurer

Craig S. Maurer, CPA is a Partner at Lilling & Company LLP, with over 20 years of professional accounting, auditing and corporate and personal tax experience. Craig specializes in auditing Not-For-Profit, Investment Entities, Employee Benefit Plans, and Real Estate Co-operatives. Craig has experience in performing financial audits and compliance audits conducted in accordance with government auditing standards (Yellow Book) and those performed in accordance with the Uniform Guidance (Single Audit) regulations. In addition, Craig has worked with middle and higher education schools, medical practices, religious organizations, private foundations, medical research, arts and humanities, and social services organizations. He also has expertise with the preparation of the federal Form 990. Previously, Craig has worked at EisnerAmper, Ernst & Young, and other regional and national accounting firms as well as in private accounting as a controller. Craig graduated from the City University of New York Queens College, with a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting and Informational Systems and a Bachelor of Science in Sociology. Craig is active in the AICPA and NYSSCPA and has published several articles on not-for-profit accounting and auditing.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Rachel Orgel
Vice President

Dr. Rachel Orgel has worked professionally in education since 2006. She is a proud three-time graduate of the University of Florida holding a Bachelor of Arts in Education, a Master of Education in special education, and a Doctor of Education in curriculum and instruction. Prior to her current position as a curriculum specialist for Montgomery County Public Schools, Rachel served as an instructional coach and taught in both general education and special education classrooms from Pre-Kindergarten through fifth grade. Throughout her career, Rachel has been dedicated to inclusion, equity, and advocating for marginalized people’s rights. With her husband, Adam, she lives in Chevy Chase, Maryland, but considers Japan to be her home.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Leslie Epstein Pearson
Secretary

Leslie Epstein Pearson is a licensed clinical social worker and family therapist for over
three decades. For 15 years, she ran a consultation program called Learning Resource
Network (LRN) at The Jewish Board, a large mental health agency in New York City. At
LRN parents and professionals called her with questions about learning and child
development as well as referrals to resources. This work resonated deeply with Leslie
as she parented a developmentally disabled child into adulthood where he is now able
to live an independent life with minimal support from Chapel Haven the vocational and
life skills program he attended after high school.

For the past 5 years, until recently, she worked as a family therapist at an out-patient
and residential program for adolescents with Eating Disorders, called Back Country
Wellness in Greenwich.

In 2019, Leslie became certified by the New York Peace Institute as a mediator for
community disputes and in small claims court. This is primarily pro bono work that she
is excited about continuing in the years to come.

She continues to maintain a small private practice focused on marital and parenting
issues.

Leslie also serves on the board of The Lowell School in Queens that educates children
with learning issues ages 11-21.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Board of Directors

Kenneth A. Plevan

Kenneth A. Plevan retired from the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP after 44 years with that firm. He currently serves as the Chair of the National Advertising Review Board, a part of the advertising industry’s self-regulatory system. He served on the Board of the National Center for Learning Disabilities, and is a trustee emeritus of the Gateway School of New York, where he served as Board Chair for 13 years.

section_16-slider-img

Advisory Board

section_16-img
Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson
Los Angeles, CA
section_16-img
Jennie Beckman
Omaha, NE
section_16-img
Carla Birnberg
Austin, TX
section_16-img
Cantor Rachel Brook
Chicago, IL
section_16-img
Liane Kupferberg Carter
Scarsdale, NY
section_16-img
Joan Chess
New York, NY
section_16-img
Rabbi Sarah Fort
Houston, TX
section_16-img
Anne Hromadka Greenwald
Orange County, CA
section_16-img
Matan A. Koch
Los Angeles, CA
section_16-img
Orlee Krass
New City, NY
section_16-img
Jason Lieberman
New York, NY
section_16-img
Amanda Morin
Scarborough, ME
section_16-img
Pamela Schuller
New York, NY
section_16-img
Rabbi Benjamin H. Spratt
New York, NY
section_16-img
Rabbi Mira Weller
New York, NY
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson
Los Angeles, CA

Rabbi Dr. Bradley Shavit Artson (www.bradartson.com) holds the Abner and Roslyn Goldstine Dean’s Chair of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies and is Vice President of American Jewish University in Los Angeles. Rabbi Artson has long been a passionate advocate for social justice, human dignity, diversity and inclusion. He wrote a book on Jewish teachings on war, peace and nuclear annihilation in the late 80s, became a leading voice advocating for GLBT marriage and ordination in the 90s, and has published and spoken widely on environmental ethics, special needs inclusion, racial and economic justice, cultural and religious dialogue and cooperation, and working for a just and secure peace for Israel and the Middle East. A member of the Philosophy Department, he is particularly interested in theology, ethics, and the integration of science and religion. He supervises the Miller Introduction to Judaism Program and mentors Camp Ramah in California in Ojai and Ramah of Northern California in the Bay Area. He is also dean of the Zacharias Frankel College in Potsdam, Germany, ordaining Conservative rabbis for Europe. A frequent contributor for the Huffington Post and for the Times of Israel, and a public figure Facebook page with over 50,000 likes, he is the author of 12 books and over 250 articles, most recently Renewing the Process of Creation: A Jewish Integration of Science and Spirit. Married to Elana Artson, they are the proud parents of twins, Jacob and Shira.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Jennie Beckman
Omaha, NE

Jennie Gates Beckman has 20+ years of experience working in Jewish spaces and is currently coming full circle in her new(ish) role as the Director of Education at Temple Israel in Omaha, NE, where she was raised.

Jennie stayed in Omaha for her undergrad in Painting & Photography, then moved to the east coast for her M.A. in Jewish Communal Service & Non-Profit Management at Brandeis University. Post graduation Jennie and her husband David relocated to Baltimore where she started her career in Federation work. She’s worked in campaign, leadership development, volunteer management and Jewish Engagement & Education. She also worked for a national organization elevating the role of volunteers in Jewish Family Service agencies in partnership with Repair the World. After the birth of their first child, Jennie & David returned to Omaha to be close to family.

Jennie is drawn to the work of Matan both professionally, as she has always been committed to improving community resources, and personally as her family has begun learning more about their own neurodiversity. Outside of work you will find her running around the great outdoors with her children Sadie & Walter, restoring their garden with native pollinators, and photographing all the things.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Carla Birnberg
Austin, TX

Carla has dedicated her professional journey to cultivating connections, whether between individuals, places, or concepts. As a passionate advocate for amplifying the voices of excluded
communities, she most recently wove together her gift for ethical storytelling, her passion for
uplifting others, and her academic experience/Master’s degree in Educational Counseling to
create the Next Step Foundation’s Upili program. Upili, Kiswahili for secondary, engages
counselors with disabilities to provide group therapy for students with disabilities in Kenyan
secondary schools. This program provides crucial psychosocial support to the students,
parents/caregivers and teachers, administration and staff resulting in participants graduating at an equal rate to their typically-abled peers and thriving in workplace environments.

Driven by a commitment to fostering a positive organizational culture, Carla has created
initiatives aimed at enhancing employee retention amidst start-up’s rapid growth. Her innovative
approaches, including “stay interviews,” upskilling opportunities, and mentorship programs,
have infused company’s core values into daily operations, cultivating a workplace where
employees are not only motivated to come to work but also eager to remain with the
organization, even across thousands of kilometers.

As a collaborative leader Carla has developed and implemented comprehensive training and
support programs for cultural integration within organizations undergoing expansion through
acquisitions. Her approach, which includes individual and group coaching as well as fostering cultural inclusivity, has proven instrumental in navigating organizational transitions.

When she’s not working she can be found ambulating the streets of Austin with her mohawked
goldendoodle, Charming.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Cantor Rachel Brook
Chicago, IL

Cantor Rachel Brook has served as the Senior Cantor of Anshe Emet Synagogue since 2021 As a leading cantorial voice in the Conservative Movement, Cantor Brook strives to create a bridge of musical innovation deeply rooted in our rich cantorial tradition. Cantor Brook was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in 2016, and went on to serve Park Avenue Synagogue as the Associate Cantor where she developed a popular inclusion service for families with special needs. Cantor Brook has performed as a soloist on some of the world’s most renowned stages including Carnegie Hall, Merkin Hall, and Jazz at Lincoln Center, among others. She has released two solo albums and is a proud member of Shul Sisters: A Cantorial Trio, together with her colleagues Cantors Laurie Akers and Rachel Goldman. As an educator, she has taught at synagogues across North America as well as the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem, where she curated and taught the Yeshiva’s first course on Building Singing Communities.
Cantor Brook received a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, a Master of Music in Vocal Performance and Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College, and a Master of Sacred Music from The Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She served on the Executive Committee of the Cantors Assembly and is a committed leader to the vibrancy and relevance of Conservative Judaism in our modern world.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Liane Kupferberg Carter
Scarsdale, NY

Liane Kupferberg Carter is a nationally known writer, journalist and advocate for the autism community. Her memoir, Ketchup Is My Favorite Vegetable: A Family Grows Up With Autism, is a winner of the 2017 American Society of Journalists and Authors Outstanding Book Award, and was a featured reading selection for Jewish Disability Awareness & Inclusion Month. She has been published in the New York Times, Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, PBS Next Avenue, Brain Child Magazine, Kveller, the Jewish Week’s blog The New Normal, and many literary journals, blogs and book anthologies. Liane is a recipient of the Autism Science Foundation’s Caryn Schwartzman Spirit Award, which recognizes excellence in autism advocacy. She has been a member of the Autism Speaks Parent Advisory Committee for the Transition Tool Kit, and wrote the section on Family Advocacy for Autism Speaks’ Advocacy Tool Kit. For 12 years, she served as a board member of Matan. She is an ambassador for C.U.R.E. (Citizens United for Research in Epilepsy), and serves on the inclusion task force at her synagogue, Westchester Report Temple.
A community activist, she co-founded the special education PTA in her school district and the town’s sports league for children with special needs, and co-authored a parent resource handbook for the school system. Liane has a master’s in journalism from New York University and a B.A. in English from Brandeis University. She lives in Westchester with her husband Marc. They are the proud parents of two handsome, menschy sons, Jonathan and Mickey.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Joan Chess
New York, NY

Joan is a certified school psychologist whose connection to this work comes from professional and personal experiences. She worked as a psychologist and department chair for the Mamaroneck school district for thirty years. Joan collaborated with Meryl Schafer, district social worker, to facilitate groups and workshops for siblings of children with special needs since 1996. They have been listening to children and young adults talk about their experiences. Throughout this process, they have collected data in order to better understand what it means to be a sibling of a brother or sister with special needs. Joan is currently a consultant for the Larchmont Mamaroneck Community Counseling Center and runs Parenting workshops. She is the mother of four children, one of whom is severely disabled.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Rabbi Sarah Fort
Houston, TX

Rabbi Sarah Fort graduated from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles, California in 2017. She holds a BA in Government and International Politics from George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. While in rabbinical school, Rabbi Fort was a Leffell Israel Fellow with AIPAC for two years and a fellow with NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change. Following her ordination in 2017, Rabbi Fort began working as the assistant and then associate rabbi at Congregation Beth Yeshurun in Houston, Texas.
Rabbi Fort focuses her rabbinate on asking and trying to answer the question “Who’s not in the tent?” In doing so, she tries to find more ways for more Jews to be a part of Jewish communal life who have traditionally found themselves, at times, “outside the tent:” the disabled community, LGBTQ+, Jews-by-Choice, the recovery community, those dealing with mental health issues, and more. She serves on both the Reproductive Rights and Strengthening Democracy Subcommittees of the Rabbinical Assembly. Rabbi Fort is currently the Rabbinic Trustee for the Jewish Federation of Greater Houston and serves on the Advisory Board of Matan.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Anne Hromadka Greenwald
Orange County, CA

Anne Hromadka Greenwald serves as the Arts Program Curator for the Jewish Community Foundation of Orange County. As the founding principal of AMH Art Advisory, Hromadka Greenwald has consulted with a select group of artists, non-profits, museums, and commercial galleries to develop their goals and increase their exposure in the public sphere and marketplace. As a result, she brings a solid foundation of 17+ years of professional arts management experience. Following her double Masters in Non-Profit Management from HUC and Public Art from USC, she established herself in the fine arts world and Jewish cultural landscape. She has directed commercially successful galleries, curated exhibitions, and designed large-scale events domestically and internationally. Her curatorial practice is rooted in a love for storytelling – bringing together communities to explore their narratives in the public sphere through interactive design. As a creator and organizer, Hromadka Greenwald has consistently contributed to building the Jewish arts and culture field in Southern California and beyond.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Matan A. Koch
Los Angeles, CA

The Hon. Matan A. Koch, Esq. learned at a very early age that the key to succeeding
with a disability was to focus on the many abilities with which he was blessed, rather
than focusing on those things that he was unable to do. Speaking from an early age on
the simple idea that we all have strengths and weaknesses and we maximize our
potential by focusing on the strengths, Matan has spent his entire life living this idea and
encouraging others to do so.

Whether consulting, practicing law, or even as a Yale undergraduate Matan has always
worked to maximize the ability of people with disabilities to contribute their talents. This
work formally began while serving as the president of the student disability community,
when he collaborated with the office of the President of the University to completely
modernize and overhaul the university’s systems to allow students with disabilities to
maximize their academic experience. During that time, Matan was appointed to his first
political office, as a Member and then the Vice-Chair of the New Haven Disability
Commission.

After graduating Harvard Law School, he spent two years in the general counsel’s
office at the Procter & Gamble Co. before moving on to an AmLaw 100 firm in New
York, where, in addition to a thriving litigation practice, he consulted with the firm on
issues of disability as they arose. In 2011, while still at the law firm, Matan was honored
to be appointed by President Obama and confirmed by the Senate to serve on the
National Council on Disability, a role that he held until May 2014. After running his own
consulting practice, he spent the last five years as an executive at RespectAbility, a
non-profit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so that people with
disabilities can participate in all aspects of society. Having left RespectAbility at the end
of 2023, Matan is none the less committed to continue his mission to allow the world to
benefit from the talents of the disability community.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Orlee Krass
New City, NY

Orlee Krass is the Ramah Poconos Tikvah Director. Originally from Rockland County, New York, Orlee grew up at Ramah Nyack, going from camper to counselor to Rosh Edah. As a life-long Ramahnik, parent of young children, and aunt of a child on the autism spectrum, Orlee is committed to creating and implementing opportunities for all children to participate in the Ramah camping movement. A graduate of Jewish day school, the Nativ College Leadership Program in Israel, the University of Massachusetts in Amherst and Mercy College, Orlee holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Judaic Studies and Education. Most recently Orlee has served as the Director of Education at Matan, the Director of Camper Care at Ramah Day Camp in Nyack, and the Tikvah Network Coordinator for the National Ramah Commission. Orlee lives in New City, New York with her husband Matt, and their children Micah, Raya, and Gavi.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Jason Lieberman
New York, NY

Jason Lieberman was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, a physical and developmental disability at the age of 11 months. At 18, Jason seriously began exploring the relationship between the Jewish community and disability community. After graduating from George Washington University in 2001, he joined the UJA-Federation of New York Task Force on Disability on which he served as a founding adviser, and joined the Matan board serving through 2013. In 2003, Jason became the Director of Government and Community Affairs for Yachad, an OU agency which seeks inclusion of all Jews in the Jewish community regardless of their disabilities, a position he held until 2006.

Jason received an MPA in Public and Nonprofit Management from Wagner School of Public Service in 2008. After graduating from Wagner, Jason became the Disability Program Manager for AIG, a position he held until 2011. Jason expanded his involvement to the broader disability community in 2012, joining the Board of Bronx Independent Living Services, an independent living center serving Bronx residents on which he currently serves. He advises, supports, and strengthens a community-based organization dedicated to empowering people with disabilities. In 2023, right as it launched, Jason joined the advisory committee of the Jewish Disability Inclusion News, a forum for diverse voices at the intersection of disability inclusion and Jewish life. He continues to be a sought-after public speaker, who has spoken in various venues throughout the US and abroad for over 30 years. He lives in NYC with his wife Emily and son Ruby.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Amanda Morin
Scarborough, ME

Amanda Morin is a neurodivergent activist, an award-winning author, early childhood specialist, and nationally known speaker, deeply committed to fostering accessible environments for all. She uses her expertise in learning, child development, Universal Design for Learning (UDL), special education and advocacy to distill complex data into easily digestible information for parents, educators and employers who want to advance the mission of creating inclusive content, programs and strategies to make the world accessible to all.

Amanda played an integral role in launching Understood.org in 2014. Her byline appears in many publications, including Education Week, The Learning Professional, ASCD, Edutopia, Parents, and more. Amanda has also worked with many organizations and companies, including Nickelodeon, National PTA, Hill Learning Center, Neurodiversity Alliance, and Matan. She serves on the Center for Inclusive Learning (CISL) advisory council, the advisory board of Digital Promise’s Learner Variability Project, the professional advisory board of Matan, and the Technical Expert Panel of the AAP Center of Excellence on Social Media & Youth Mental Health.

Amanda is the author of five books: The Everything Parent’s Guide to Special Education, The Everything Kids’ Learning Activities Book, On-the-Go Fun for Kids, What Is Empathy? A Bullying Storybook for Kids, and Adulting Made Easy: Things Someone Should Have Told You About Getting Your Grown-Up Act Together.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Pamela Schuller
New York, NY

As a teen, Pamela Schuller had the worst diagnosed case of Tourette Syndrome in the country, a touch of Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and a whole lot of pent-up anger. She spent years depressed, suicidal, and wishing her differences away. Over time, she started looking at her life differently and turned her obstacles and challenges into the very fuel that propels her. Now an internationally known disability and mental health advocate and professional stand-up comedian, Pamela’s stories of growing up in a body she had no control over are engaging, powerful, a little bit heart-wrenching, and unapologetically funny. Pamela has spoken and performed in six countries, in almost every state in the US, and for more than 25,000 kids, teens, and adults. She holds a BA in Psychology and Youth Outreach Through the Arts and an MA in Child Advocacy and Policy, where she focused her studies on creating comedy and improvisational theater programs as a tool for youth with disabilities to improve self-advocacy skills. She has grown that skillset into a repertoire that teaches kids and teens to be proud of who they are, communities to be deeply inclusive, and corporate teams to be innovative and learn to make smart, bold moves. Pamela was named one of the “36 Under 36” who are changing the face of the Jewish community by The Jewish Week because she gets audiences of every age comfortable, laughing, and learning together through storytelling and humor. Pamela doesn’t just “tolerate” what makes her different; she embraces it, loves it, and finds the funny in it… all while challenging her audiences to do the same.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Rabbi Benjamin H. Spratt
New York, NY

Ben Spratt serves as Senior Rabbi of Congregation Rodeph Sholom in Manhattan. Rabbi Spratt’s Jewish journey moved through the Orthodox, Reconstructionist, Renewal, and Reform movements of Judaism before becoming ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He centers his rabbinate on the values of connection, collaboration, and belonging. Continuing the long legacy of innovation at Rodeph Sholom, Ben helps spark new initiatives focused on the needs of people, including: Shireinu, an inclusion platform for Jewish families with special needs that now serves as a spiritual model for synagogues and churches around the world; Tribe, a joint endeavor with Rabbi Josh Stanton to engage Jewish Millennials through grassroots leadership and a community of empowerment; Minyan, a Jewish small-group-based approach to human flourishing through connection sparked with Senior Cantor Shayna De Lowe.
Ben is a regular presence in written publications and podcasts, often with his co-author and colleague Rabbi Josh Stanton. Together they wrote Awakenings: American Jewish Transformations in Identity, Leadership, and Belonging and hold a regular column for Religion News Service exploring the changing landscape of American religion.

section_16-slider-img
Back to team overview

Advisory Board

Rabbi Mira Weller
New York, NY

Rabbi Mira Weller currently serves as Assistant Rabbi at Congregation Rodeph Sholom in NYC. She received her ordination at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles in May 2022. She studied Culture and Politics atGeorgetown University’s School of Foreign Service and received her Master’s in Jewish Education at the Rhea Hirsch School of Education at HUC-JIR. She is the proud recipient of awards for her studies in rabbinic literature and her work in Jewish education. Additionally, she was granted the Myrtle Lorch Pfaelzer-Monroe Pfaelzer Award as an Outstanding Female Rabbinical School Student (2022). Since her time in rabbinical school, the torah of her disability has led her to become a voice of advocacy for inclusion for both participants and professionals in Jewish spaces.

section_16-slider-img

Join the team and make incredible change for a more inclusive world.

Employment Opportunities
section_17-img

Connect With Us

Start collaborating with us for a more inclusive Jewish community.

Untitled
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.