Faculty      Directors                          

Faculty    Directors    

Inspiring Adult Jewish Learning Around the Globe


Mr. Donald L. Katz, Chairman

Don is retired as President of Capitol Mfg. Co., division of Harsco Corporation, and has served as board member, officer, and president of various industry and non-profit organizations. Don is a graduate of Cornell University and the Harvard Business School, and serves as trustee of the Melton Foundation. He served as Treasurer of the Florence Melton Mini-School Board from 1991-1999 and as Vice Chairman of the Florence Melton Mini-School Corporate Board from 1999-2014. In addition, Don and his… Read More
Randi Brenowitz

Ms. Randi Brenowitz, Vice Chairman

Randi is a proud 2007 graduate of the Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning and has attended each of the Melton Israel Seminars. She is a member of the Advisory Board of the International Alumni Association and co-chairs the 120 Campaign. Randi also serves on the board of the Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School and since 2008 she has served on the National Board of the Jewish Reconstructionist Federation where she currently is a member of the Executive Committee and President of the… Read More
Sobelman Betty

Ms. Betty Sobelman, Treasurer

Betty served as Director of Finance for the Florence Melton School of Adult Learning from 2006 until her retirement in 2014. Previously, she served as Director of Finance for the Solomon Schechter Days Schools of Chicago and the international known Keshet Day School which serves special needs students. She has served in leadership positions in ORT, Na'Amat and on the Chicago Board of Jewish Education. She continues to serve several not-for-profit organizations as a business and financial… Read More

Mr. Charles (Chuck) Levine, Secretary

Chuck is an independent Board member serving several companies in North America and Europe focused on the telecommunications industry. Mr. Levine served as the Chief Executive Officer of Sprint PCS, the fastest growing business in history, reaching $10 billion of revenue in 4 ½ years. Mr. Levine also served as an executive for Procter & Gamble, AT&T and Octel Communications. In addition, Mr. Levine serves on three other not-for-profit boards serving his community north of San Francisco,… Read More
Sherrie Weiss

Ms. Sherrie Weiss, Assistant Secretary

Sherrie is a Florence Melton Adult Learning graduate from the Community Foundation of Jewish Education in Chicago, having continued her studies through Melton with the Board of Jewish Education of Metropolitan Chicago. She is a retired early childhood educator and resides in Riverwoods, Illinois with her husband Albert Weiss. They have 5 children between them. As a board member of the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces, Sherrie co-chaired the effort for raising funds and organizing a program… Read More
Rachel Bovitz

Rabbi Rachel Rudis Bovitz, Executive Director of the Florence Melton School

Rabbi Rachel Rudis Bovitz is the Executive Director. She previously worked as Melton’s Chief Strategy Officer for the previous two years. From 2007-2010, Rachel served as the founding director of the Conejo/West Valley Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning in Southern California which she and its founder built as a consortium of 12 synagogues, schools and community organizations. Rachel has taught as an adjunct professor of Jewish Studies at American Jewish University, been a… Read More
Rabbi Morey Schwartz

Rabbi Morey Schwartz, International Director of Education and Innovation of the Florence Melton School

Rabbi Dr. Morey Schwartz is the International Director of Education and Innovation. Morey advances the work of the Florence Melton School as he seeks out and assesses new opportunities to enhance Melton’s global impact through communal, national and international partnerships and other strategic relationships. From the Melton Institute at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Morey supervises the content and the delivery of the Melton School curriculum. He oversees the ongoing development of all… Read More
Howard Deitcher

Dr. Howard Deitcher, Director of the Florence Melton Institute

Howard is a tenured faculty member at the Melton Centre for Jewish Education at the Hebrew University and its former director (2002-2008). He is the current educational director of the Revivim Program at the Hebrew University, which trains outstanding university students to teach Jewish Studies in Israeli national schools. From 1996-2001 he served as director of the Mandel Jerusalem Fellows Program in Jerusalem. He has published numerous articles, co-edited four books, and is a member of the… Read More

Ms. Sandy Benjamin

Sandy was born in Melbourne, Australia in 1949. Her primary and secondary education was at Methodist Ladies College and she graduated from Melbourne University with an Arts degree. She majored in psychology and with a degree in Social Work, practiced for seventeen years. Sandy’s area of specialization was family psychiatry and adoption. She lectured in the social work school at La Trobe University and played a leading role in the reform of adoption law in the state of Victoria, Australia. She… Read More
Menahem Ben-Sasson

Prof. Menahem Ben Sasson, Chancellor, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Prof. Ben-Sasson is the former president of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a former Israeli politician. He studied at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, where he gained a BA in History and philosophy and a PhD in the History of the Jewish People in the Islamic Lands. After doing a post-doctorate at the University of Cambridge, he became a professor of the history of the Jewish nation. He served as rector of The Hebrew University (1997-2001) and represented the Association of University… Read More
Bobbie Blau

Bobbie Blau

Bobbie has been a passionate student of Melton since 2007 with the initiation of a consortium in Los Angeles with Rabbi Rachel Bovitz at the helm. As her daughters, Sarah and Emily began Hebrew School years previously, she and her husband Carl, dedicated themselves to enhancing their own knowledge of Judaism in order to keep up with their girls. Bobbie has served on the Board of Directors at Valley Beth Shalom in Encino, California specifically working as the licensed architectural liaison… Read More
Asher Cohen

Prof. Asher Cohen, President, Hebrew University

Prof. Cohen is the current President of The Hebrew University. After graduating with a B.A. in Economics and an M.A. in Psychology from The Hebrew University, Prof. Cohen did his doctoral and post-doctoral studies at the University of Oregon in the U.S. He served as a senior lecturer at Indiana University before returning in the early 1990s to The Hebrew University’s Department of Psychology. Since 2008 he has served as the head of the Department of Psychology in the Faculty of Social Sciences.… Read More
Prof. Jonathan Cohen

Prof. Johnathan Cohen, Director, Melton Center for Jewish Education. Hebrew University

Prof. Cohen was a professor in the School of Education from 2009-2011. He served as the chairman of the Department of Education and he is currently the director of the School of Education. He is a Mandel Institute Jerusalem Fellows graduate and senior staff member at the Mandel Leadership Institute. He conducts research in the areas of philosophy of education in general and the philosophy of Jewish education, in particular, hermeneutics and education and theories of curricula. Prof. Cohen holds… Read More
Alan Edelman

Alan Edelman

Alan is a native of Kansas City. He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Child Development and Education from the University of Kansas, spending his junior year at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Alan attended the Jewish Theological Seminary, New York City, where he received his Master’s Degree in Jewish Education. He also holds a Master’s Degree in Education Policy and Leadership from the University of Kansas. Alan’s research focused on restructuring the congregational religious school by… Read More
Susan Weiss Firestone

Ms. Susan Weiss Firestone

Susan serves on various local and national boards including the Jewish Federations of North America, United Israel Appeal (UIA) and the International Board of the Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning. She is a member of the JFNA Israel and Overseas Committee as well as the JFNA Global Planning Table. Locally, Susan serves as President of the Jewish Federation of Western MA, Vice President of the Jewish Endowment Foundation of Western MA, where she chaired the PACE/LOJE program. Susan… Read More
gal yossi

Ambassador Yossi Gal

Ambassador Gal, a graduate of The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is assuming the role of Vice President for University Advancement and External Relations. A career diplomat, he recently served Israel as the nation’s Ambassador to France and Monaco and previously was posted to Washington, D.C. twice, as Director of the Ambassador’s office and as spokesman of the embassy. He served as Israel’s ambassador to the Netherlands and has lectured throughout the world and published articles in the… Read More
board Cathy Zacks Gildenhorn

Ms. Cathy Zacks Gildenhorn

Cathy has dedicated much of her life to improving the lives of others and connecting women to Jewish life and each other. Cathy serves on the board of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, National Women’s Philanthropy and recently served on the Executive Committee as Vice President for Women’s Philanthropy for The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington. Cathy has served on several local and national boards including the Kingsbury Center (special education), the Edna Gladney Fund… Read More
Susan L Goldsmith

Susan L. Goldsmith

Susie has been involved in the Jewish Community for more than 40 years, as both a volunteer and professional. Beginning as a young married, she volunteered for several Jewish organizations, including NCJW and the Jewish Federation of Greater Kansas City. In 1981, she began working for the Federation as Assistant Women's Division Director. She completed her tenure with the Federation in 1993, having served as Women's Division Director and Director of Community Planning. After completing 13 years… Read More

Mr. Alan D. Hoffmann

Alan is director general of the Department of Jewish Zionist Education, Jewish Agency. He previously served as director of the Mandel Center for Jewish Continuity at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, as executive director of the Council for Initiatives in Jewish Education and as director of The Hebrew University's Melton Centre for Jewish Education. Alan was also the founding director of the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School. Read More

Ms. Candace Kerker

Candace is a 1988 graduate of Emory University in Atlanta and a 2010 Melton School graduate. Possessing a strong marketing background, Candace is a very active leader in the Jewish Federation of Greater Atlanta and is a life member of the NCJW and The Jewish Home. Candace lives in Atlanta, GA with her husband and their four children. Read More
image: Dr. Edward J. Septimus

Dr. Edward J. Septimus

Ed is originally from New York City. He received his medical degree from Baylor College of Medicine in Houston in 1972. Dr. Septimus went on to complete his postgraduate training in internal medicine and infectious diseases at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston. He is board certified in both internal medicine and infectious diseases. For over 30 years Dr. Septimus practiced infectious diseases where he formed a 3 person specialty group in infectious diseases in Houston. He was also medical… Read More
Ms. Billy Shapira

Ms. Billy Shapira, Director of Student Administration, Hebrew University

Billy has been appointed as the new director-general of the university. Shapira has a bachelor’s degree in Russian studies and international relations and a master’s degree in public policy and administration from The Hebrew University. She began her career at the university in 1976 as head of the studies and grades unit in the Students Authority. Over a period of years she progressed within the university to fill varied positions as head of the section for student acceptance and registration,… Read More
Dr. Michael Troner

Dr. Michael Troner

Michael is a medical oncologist and partner in Advanced Medical Specialties practicing at Baptist Hospital in Miami. He is married to Debbie Troner. Read More
Ms. Rose Weitz

Ms. Rose Weitz

Rose is a 5761 graduate of the Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning in South Palm Beach County. She is a founding Chair of the Melton International Alumni Association. She is also a Board Member of the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County Women’s Board, on the Executive Board of Jewish Education Commission, a member of the Jewish Education Task Force and Chairs the Melton Advisory Board. Rose has been an active volunteer throughout childhood and adult life, including the… Read More

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