The Makom Community Team
Working Together to Provide Quality Jewish Education
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR & FOUNDER
Beverly is a driven builder of communal Jewish learning spaces. They believe that people can make endless meaning from exploring Jewish wisdom and bringing it into our lives in creative ways. Makom Community invites kids and grownups into learning experiences that do just that. Beverly received a B.A. in Jewish Studies from the University of Maryland then received an M.S.Ed. from the University of Pennsylvania in Jewish Education. Beverly was a fellow at Yeshivat Hadar, received the Covenant Foundation Pomegranate Prize, was a Shalom Hartman Created Equal Fellow, and is a graduate of the Mandel Foundation Executive Leadership Program. After running congregational schools in Maryland and New Jersey, working at Barrack Hebrew Academy, and leading Makom Community, they have developed over 100 curricula for learners of all ages. Beverly is excited to introduce Makom’s pedagogy, Jewish Placemaking, to communities around the country and see how that supports each community in growing to live up to their values.
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DIRECTOR OF TEACHING AND LEARNING
Amanda is a passionate Jewish educator who loves creating immersive experiences for learners and their families. Originally from Sarasota, Florida, she acquired her love for Judaism from her many summers attending and working at Camp Ramah Darom in Clayton, Georgia. She received a B.A. in Jewish Studies and Nonprofit Management from Indiana University and an M.A. in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) in New York City. While at JTS, Amanda also pursued a Master’s concentration in Israel Education from the iCenter, the national hub for Israel Education. During her time in New York City, Amanda led summer teen travel, worked in numerous synagogue schools across the New York metropolitan area, and staffed Birthright Israel trips. She was the Assistant Director of the Lese Center for Living Judaism at Central Synagogue in Manhattan, where she created meaningful experiences for learners of all ages, both in and outside of the classroom. Amanda is so excited to be with all of the students and families at Makom Community, and can’t wait for another year of fun and learning!
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DIRECTOR OF STRATEGY
Terri is a passionate and strategic relationship builder who works in the intersection of Jewish education and development. Terri has spent her career strengthening the Jewish community in Philadelphia at Temple Beth Zion – Beth Israel, the Hillel at Temple University, and at the Jewish Theological Seminary in the Mid-Atlantic region. Her background is in Jewish Education and she completed her Masters in Jewish Education from the Davidson School of Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary, with a concentration in Israel Education. Terri had been serving on the board of Makom Community for three years prior to joining the professional leadership team. Terri is inspired by Makom’s thoughtful pedagogy, quality of educators, and impact Makom has on its students their families, and fellow educational leaders across the nation. When Terri is not working, you can find her on the frisbee field with her husband Jake, enjoying all the food and activities Philadelphia has to offer, and enjoying time with the trees in the Poconos.
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Assistant Director of Teacher Education & Learning Support
Gaby is a musical and energetic Jewish educator who grew up in Central New Jersey. She studied psychology and linguistics at NYU and spent many happy summers at Habonim Dror summer camps. Gaby completed her M.Ed. from Widener in Education. She loves dancing, baking intricate desserts, and making the world a more colorful place. She’s excited to learn, sing, create, and giggle with our amazing students every day of the week! She’s also energized to help bring Makom Community’s pedagogy to the wider community of Jewish educators through our Makom Making programming. Gaby was a Matan Institute Fellow in Cohort 10 where she learned deeply about how to engage all our learners at Makom Community.
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Part Time Educator
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Makom Making Coach
Ash (they/them/theirs) is a spirited play arts educator born and raised just outside Philadelphia, where they earned a B.A. in Theater from Temple University (2016). They spent 3 years building community, teaching, and making avant-garde art, theater, and film in Western Massachusetts, but have been overjoyed to return home to put down roots in the West Philly community and to be closer to their family! Ash has spent the last eleven happy summers teaching and playing at Ramah Day Camp, where they have done many jobs, specializing in Omanut (art), Drama and Rikud (Israeli dance). This summer Ash was delighted to take on their newest role on the Program Direction team at RDC. Ash has taught at BTBJ Religious School, Germantown Jewish Center, with The Bible Players, with Moishe House, and as Jewish Learning Venture’s PJ Our Way Associate 2021-22 to bring multi-modal arts education to a large variety of Jewish spaces. Ash is thrilled to continue their journey with Makom Community as Makom Making Coach this year.
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EDUCATOR & Researcher
Olivia is an educator and researcher passionate about accessible, learner-driven arts based education. After graduating from Oberlin college in 2019 with a degree in Cinema studies and English, Olivia worked as a college access fellow at 12Plus, a Philly based education non-profit. She has been a member of the Makom team since 2021, and is excited to continue to build this vibrant community in the role of researcher and teaching the Shorashim (1st-2nd grade).
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Educator & Communications Manager
Liora (they/she) is thrilled to continue their work at Makom Community in the Anafim (5th-7th grade) kvutzah. Hailing from the Midwest, they graduated magna cum laude with a degree in English Writing from the University of Pittsburgh in 2021 and have bounced around Philly since graduation. They’ve taught in a variety of Jewish Education settings including virtual classes and Sunday school and received their TEFL Certificate from Maximo Nivel in Costa Rica. In the classroom, she is passionate about exploring the potential of student-centered pedagogy. She also values tikkun olam (repairing the world) and using it as a framework to inspire global citizenship in her learners. And as communications manager, Liora aims to be accessible, engaging, and informative. She loves creating in all it’s forms and prioritizes making space for creativity in the classroom. In her free time, Liora can be found working on their novel, collaging, or practicing divination.
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Educator & Camp Coordinator
Micah (they/them) is an educator who embraces kindness, empathy, and vulnerability. As a 2021 graduate, they earned a B.S. in Education from Temple University. Micah is also a Jewish spiritual leader and song leader with experience leading song and prayer at summer camps, religious schools, preschools, college campuses, and congregations. Micah’s many summers at URJ Camp Harlam have paved their way as a Jewish educator, teaching the value of positive Jewish community, deep interpersonal connections, and embracing diversity. They are excited to continue their work at Makom with Nitzanim (3rd-4th grade) this year. Outside of Makom, you can find Micah learning new crafts, playing music, exploring nature, or playing Ticket to Ride (the board game)!
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DATA AND FINANCE MANAGER
Sara (“Sah-ra”) wears many hats. She is Makom’s bookkeeper, coordinates Beverly’s calendar and supports development and operations, helping keep the Makom ship in shape as we grow. Our former Makom @ Home educator, Sara continues to work with Makom kiddos to offer 1:1 support over Zoom. Sara mostly grew up in Philadelphia, studied Linguistics at Brown University, and now lives in Washington, DC. When she’s not sitting in front of her computer, Sara can often be found singing, tending her balcony garden, or taking walks in her neighborhood (wearing a hat, of course).
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Part Time Educator
Neil is very excited to join the Makom team! He grew up in Washington, DC and holds a degree in theater and Jewish studies from Swarthmore College, where he was a regular participant and song leader at on-campus Shabbat services. He has worked at several arts camps in the DC area, including a summer of coordinating the extended day program at Camp Arena Stage. In his free time, you can find Neil playing stringed instruments and studying Yiddish. Neil teaches with Micah in the Nitzanim (3rd-4th grade) kvutzah.
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Part Time Educator
Mira (she/her) is thrilled to join the Makom team as an assistant teacher! Growing up just outside of Philly, she has been active in the city’s Jewish community throughout her life. Mira graduated from The George Washington University in 2020 with a degree in American Studies and Psychology. She spent a few years in Chicago, living communally and working first as a case manager and then as a Jewish educator. Last year, wanting to be closer to friends and family, Mira moved to West Philadelphia and worked as a teacher at HMS School for Children with Cerebral Palsy. Mira is really looking forward to re-entering the world of Jewish education and leading with curiosity, openness, and playfulness. This year she is working with Liora in Anafim (5th-7th grade) and Sarah in Garinim (PreK-1st grade). In her free time, Mira is probably reading a book, playing board games, or cooking a meal for her friends.
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Educator & Program Manager
Since graduating in 2018 from Emerson College with her Masters in Theatre Education, Sarah has worked with a wide range of ages, from Pre-K students to college undergraduates. She began at Makom in January 2023 as a part-time educator in Garinim (PreK-1st grade) and began her full-time role in June. Prior to working at Makom, Sarah held teaching artist roles at arts organizations in Boston including the Boch Center, Watertown Children’s Theatre, and Urbanity Dance, in addition to several years of work at The Chestnut Hill School as an after-school teacher and the head of the upper camp drama program. She also held a variety of program and curriculum development, community engagement, evaluation and administration positions, most notably at Boston Lyric Opera as Education Programs Assistant. Her teaching practices are rooted in arts-based and trauma and mental-health informed education. In addition to teaching at Makom, Sarah is an active musician in the Philadelphia area.
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- Rabbi Elie Kaunfer, PhD
- Rabbi Karen Reiss-Medwed, PhD
- Rabbi David Nelson, PhD
- Rabbi Phil Warmflash
- Rabbi Deborah Waxman, PhD
- Kathy Goldenberg
- Barbara Schneider
- Randy Schulz
- James Stein, Board Chair
- Jeremy Tobacman