Board of Directors

Board Officers
Ron Klein, Chair
Ron Klein, chair of JDCA’s board, served as a Member of Congress (FL-22) from 2006-2010. Klein is currently an attorney and member of Holland & Knight’s Public Policy & Regulation Group. He is also a co-chair of the firm’s Israel Practice Group. From 1992 through 1996, Ron served in the Florida House of Representatives; and from 1996 through 2006, he served in the Florida Senate, where he was elected Democratic leader. While in the Florida Senate, he helped set up the Enterprise Florida (Florida’s official state agency) office in Israel, which advocates trade and investment between businesses in Florida and Israel.
In 2006, Ron was elected to represent Florida’s 22nd congressional district (Broward and Palm Beach Counties) in the House of Representatives, where he served two terms. He served on the Financial Services and Foreign Relations committees and as vice chairman of the Subcommittee on the Middle East and South Asia. He also served as co-chair of the House Anti-Semitism Caucus.Ron played a significant role in the drafting and passage of the Comprehensive Iran Sanctions Accountability and Divestment Act of 2010. He proposed and persuaded lawmakers to include sections in the law that provide significant enforcement authority to the United States government against businesses that violate the law, but do business directly or indirectly in the United States. As the vice chair of the Mideast Subcommittee, he had numerous meetings and opportunities to travel and engage with government and business leaders in Israel. As co-chair of Holland & Knight’s Israel Business Initiative, he is working with firm attorneys, clients and others in identifying and facilitating investment and business collaboration opportunities between Israel and the United States.
Barbara Goldberg Goldman, Vice Chair
Barbara Goldberg Goldman is President of B&G Regal Domestics, Inc., a national employment placement agency located in Rockville, and Managing Partner of Quorum, LLC, a land-use consulting firm specializing in mixed-use and mixed-income developments, and affordable housing. Barbara is the founder of the nationally recognized Affordable Housing Conference of Montgomery County and has served as its Chair and now Co-chair since its inception in 1991. Barbara served on the Housing Opportunities Commission of Montgomery County for thirteen years and was its chair for five of those years. During the Carter administration, she served at the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of Community Planning and Development, where she worked with Congress on housing and economic development policy and programmatic legislative programs and initiatives.
Prior to HUD, she was with the National League of Cities and U.S. Conference of Mayors as the Director of the Washington, D.C. offices for San Jose, California; Lincoln, Nebraska; and the Metropolitan Toledo Consortium. Barbara served as Special Assistant to and Speechwriter for Rep. Barbara C. Jordan (D-TX), and Legislative Aide to Rep. Ron Dellums (D-CA).Barbara, who holds a Master of Arts degree in Urban Planning and Policy from the University of Maryland, also has served on many affordable housing and related panels and forums throughout the United States. She served as Co-Chair on Montgomery County Executive Ike Leggett’s transition team’s Affordable Housing Task Force, and Maryland Gov. Martin O’Malley’s transition team’s Workforce Housing Task Force. She also co-chaired The Affordable Housing Task Force of Montgomery County, and served on the Housing and Economic Development Subcommittee on Maryland Gov. Robert Ehrlich’s Commission on Housing Policy. Barbara co-chaired Barack Obama’s Jewish Community Leadership Committee in 2008 and again in 2012. A graduate of Leadership Montgomery, Barbara is the recipient of a number of awards including Montgomery County’s 2011 Dr. Martin Luther King Humanitarian Award. She currently serves on the Strathmore Hall Foundation Board, Save A Child’s Heart Board, and American Jewish Committee Washington, DC Board. Past affiliations include Montgomery County’s Community Development Block Grant Advisory Board, Montgomery County’s Charter Review Commission, the Jewish Community Center of Greater Washington, Maccabi USA, the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington, and the Jewish Social Service Agency of Maryland, Washington and Virginia.
Diane (Dede) Feinberg, Secretary and Development Committee Vice Chair
Diane (Dede) Feinberg currently serves as secretary of the Jewish Democratic Council of America and vice chair of development. She is a long-standing  member of the Jewish Agency for Israel’s Board of Governors where she currently serves in several leadership capacities. She is also the former vice chair of the United Israel Appeal. She is a former chair of the Executive Committee of the board of The Jewish Federations of North America. Dede was the chair of the Missions Committee for JFNA, the National Women’s Philanthropy International Lion of Judah conference, and NWP’s major gifts committee. Dede and her husband, Kenneth, were North American co-chairs of the 2009 Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly in Washington, DC.
At the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, Dede has held many portfolios including president, campaign chair, and the president and campaign chair of the women’s division. She also served as chair of financial resource development for the United Jewish Endowment Fund of Greater Washington. She is currently a member of its board of directors.
Dede was a trader on Wall Street for five years specializing in high technology stocks. For the past several decades, her strong leadership and organization skills coupled with her devotion and commitment to Jewish values have been benefiting local, national and international Jewish organizations as well as strengthening the U.S.- Israel relationship.
Among the honors she has received are the National Women’s Philanthropy Kipnis Wilson/Friedland Award; National Capital Philanthropy Day Exceptional Volunteer Fundraiser; Whitney North Seymour Award of Outstanding Public Service; UJA of Greater Washington Campaigner of the Year and the Montgomery County Department of Family Resources Can Do Award.
Beth Kieffer Leonard, Treasurer and Budget Committee Chair
An accountant by profession, Beth Kieffer Leonard is managing partner of Lurie LLP, one of the top 100 accounting firms in the United States. She was president of the Minneapolis Jewish Federation from 2006-2008, where she served as treasurer as well as Business and Professional Campaign chair in 2014. She received the Tychman Family Young Leadership Award and participated in the first Harry Kay Leadership program, an intensive leadership development program modeled after the Wexner program. She received the Presidents’ Award from the Women Presidents Organization and the Advocacy Award from the Women’s Business Development Center. Beth has been on The Jewish Agency’s Board of Governors since 2008.
Committee Chairs & Vice Chairs
Peter Gillon, Budget Committee Vice Chair
Peter Gillon is a senior partner at the law firm Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, where he manages a national practice representing corporate insurance policyholders in their dealings with insurance companies, both in claims disputes and in transactions. He regularly counsels public companies and their boards in connection with insurance coverage disputes arising in securities litigation, derivative lawsuits, M&A-related litigation and enforcement matters. His group was named Insurance Practice Group of the Year in 2015 and 2016 and Peter has been recognized by his peers as one of the “10 Most Admired Attorneys” in the area of insurance coverage. Peter has been actively involved as a Jewish Democrat, and served as an early director of the National Jewish Democratic Council. He currently is vice chairman of the D.C. Jazz Festival. He was one of two founders of the Association of Climate Change Officers (ACCO), the national association of climate professionals, and is a fellow of The American College of Coverage and Extracontractual Counsel. Peter and his partner, Lisa Hook, reside in Washington, D.C., Miami and San Francisco.
Marcia Riklis, Communications Committee Chair
Marcia Riklis started her career as an account executive, managing the Revlon account for Grey Advertising. She later received her MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business and joined Rapid American Corporation, her family’s business — a large conglomerate of industrial companies, national retail chains, and major liquor and cosmetic companies. In her tenure as vice president of strategic planning, she helped to further diversify the company by successfully procuring cellular telecommunication contracts and handling a portfolio of stock investments. In 1990, Marcia founded Jose Eber Inc., a small national hair care company, and while serving as CEO, she created a cross-disciplinary program, “the Campaign for Love Without Violence,” to educate and encourage self-esteem among victims of domestic violence.
Marcia sold the company to her partner in 1994, and now devotes her time to family, philanthropy and the Jewish community. She became a founding member of The Jewish Women’s Foundation of New York to help address a broad range of issues relating to women and girls. Marcia’s involvement with UJA-Federation began with the Women’s Campaign, where she chaired the Lion of Judah Winter Conference. She later became involved in then planned giving and endowments committee, the caring commission and caring cabinet, the board of directors and the executive committee. Marcia is currently a member of the finance committee, the Commission on Jewish Identity and Renewal’s Israel Task Force, the campaign steering committee, and the priorities cabinet. She co-chaired the general campaign from 2011 to 2013.
Matt Ratner, Communications Committee Vice Chair

Matt Ratner is a film producer and director. Ratner has produced ten films under the Tilted Windmill banner, and all have premiered to critical acclaim at top-tier film festivals such as SXSW and Sundance, winning multiple awards.  STANDING UP, FALLING DOWN, his directorial debut, starring Billy Crystal and Ben Schwartz, premiered at the 2019 Tribeca Film Festival.  He received the award for Best Directorial Debut - U.S. at the Heartland International Film Festival, where the film also received the “Humor and Humanity” award.  Additionally, Ratner received the Best First Feature award at the Naples International Film Festival, and the film received the Audience Award at Washington West Film Festival and the Best Screenplay Award at the Napa Valley Film Festival among others. Most recently he produced the indie comedy WE BROKE UP, starring Aya Cash and William Jackson Harper, which premiered exclusively on Hulu.

Matt founded Tilted Windmill Productions with the belief that commercially viable and artistically fulfilling filmmaking need not be mutually exclusive. After graduating from Northwestern University, Matt spent several years working in politics and government, including as the Director of Jewish Outreach for the Ohio Democratic Party during the 2008 Presidential election, and at the National Security Division of the Department of Justice.

Ratner has a variety of philanthropic and civic pursuits and is heavily involved in wildlife and habitat conservation in Africa, serving on the board of Conservancy Guardians USA. He also serves on the Next Generation Leadership Council for the Jewish Democratic Council of America.

Israel “Izzy” Klein, Political Committee Chair
An expert at helping businesses, associations and nonprofits manage complex public policy issues across Washington, Israel “Izzy” Klein is a government relations and communications specialist focusing on financial services, technology, tax, telecommunications and energy. A veteran of both sides of the US Capitol, Izzy worked as the top communications aide for Senator Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and then-Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA). Prior to co-founding the Klein/Johnson Group, Izzy spent nearly a decade first as a senior principal at a large public affairs firm, and then as managing partner at a boutique lobbying firm.
Izzy has spearheaded government relations and media outreach efforts for dozens of organizations. Izzy led a coalition of fin-tech startups during consideration of the Dodd-Frank Act; quarterbacked a comprehensive legislative effort to pass the JOBS Act in 2012; and advised an impressive roster of Fortune 500 companies, trade associations, non-profits, and fast growing startups with complex political and high-profile policy challenges. Izzy has been quoted as a political policy expert by The New York Times, Politico, Bloomberg News, Boston Globe and other media outlets.Izzy works closely with Senate and House Democrats across a dozen top committees and in the leadership on policy, political, and communications priorities. He also has deep relationships with several regulatory agencies, think tanks and other third party groups, in addition to DC and national media outlets. For Schumer, Izzy led communications efforts on a broad portfolio of issues after relating to New York, the Senate Finance, Banking, and Judiciary Committees. He also served as Schumer’s deputy staff director at the Joint Economic Committee during the 2008 economic meltdown, where he helped the Committee tackle crucial economic policy issues relating to the housing and credit crisis, foreign direct investment in the US, and energy independence. Izzy held several senior staff roles for Senator Ed Markey, including Press Secretary and led then-Congressman Markey’s homeland security efforts post-September 11. A native of West Orange, New Jersey, Izzy holds a bachelor’s degree from Georgetown University. He is a board member of the Jewish Democratic Council of America, the Junior State of America Foundation and is a mentor with 1776. Izzy lives with his wife, Sarah, their twins, and a very large fluffy dog in Chevy Chase, Maryland.
Michael C. Gelman, Political Committee Vice Chair
Michael C. Gelman is a managing director of The Morningstar Foundation, a family foundation that makes grants in the United States and Israel. He most recently was chair of the executive committee of The Jewish Federations of North America. He was previously national treasurer of JFNA and has chaired its consulting committee and domestic affairs pillar. Michael and his wife, Susie, co-chaired JFNA’s 2003 and 2013 General Assemblies in Jerusalem. A life member of the board of The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington, Michael served three terms as its president, two terms as co-campaign chair, and one term as president of its endowment fund. Michael was a member of the United States Holocaust Memorial Council from 1995 to 2004, having been appointed to that position by President Bill Clinton. He was appointed by Maryland Gov. Parris Glendening to the University System of Maryland’s Board of Regents, serving from 1996 to 2000. He has also served on the board of the Jewish Agency for Israel. Michael sits on the boards of several organizations, including the International Board of Governors of Hillel; the Washington Institute for Near East Policy; and Moment magazine. He is co-owner of Mid- Atlantic Media, which publishes the Washington Jewish Week and the Baltimore Jewish Times, and serves on the board of the holding company for Congressional Bank. Michael was the founding partner of Gelman, Rosenberg & Freedman, an accounting firm in Bethesda, Maryland. Michael and his wife reside in Chevy Chase, Maryland. They have three children and a grandson.
Ada Horwich, Development Committee Chair
Ada Horwich earned her bachelor’s degree at the University of California Berkeley and her master of social work at University of Southern California. She also worked as a special education teacher and served in the United States Peace Corps as a master teacher of science in the Philippines. Ada is active in numerous community organizations including the Jewish Federation of Los Angeles. She also sits on the board of the Nazarian Center for Israel Studies at UCLA. Ada and her husband, Jim, chaired the Jewish Federation General Campaign in 2006 and 2007. She was the president of the Women’s Alliance for Israel PAC and she chaired the American Israel Public Affairs Committee in Southern California and is a former member of the national board of directors.
Ada co-chairs the Centennial Endowment campaign for the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles. She is a pro-Israel activist and last spring received the Lea Rabin Award from the Women’s Campaign of the Los Angeles Federation. Ada and Jim have three daughters – Tamara, Elana and Danielle — and five grandchildren.
Karen Spar Kasner, Governance Committee Chair
After a career as a corporate and real estate litigator, Karen has spent more than 28 years as an active volunteer to many organizations. This includes UJA-Federation of New York, the Jewish Board of Family and Children’s Services, the JCC of Mid-Westchester, the Washington Institute, JCPA, JFNA,  Human Service Council and the Riverdale Y. Starting in 2000 until June, 2017, Karen developed and chaired UJA-Federation of New York’s Government Relations Committee & its Public Policy Committee, Westchester’s Government Relations Committee, and UJA’s Annual Advocacy Mission to Washington. She serves on several Network Commission committees & Task Forces, and co-drafted the first Agency Accountability Guidelines in 2013. Karen also serves on JFNA’s Task Force on Health and Long-Term Care since its inception in 2008. Karen and her husband served as chair of the Parents’ Fund at the University of Pennsylvania from 2004-2010. She was also former President of the JCC of Mid-Westchester. Karen has been honored and received several awards including from UJA-Federation of New York, Jewish Board for the Centennial of Hawthorne Cedar Knolls, WJC and the JCC of Mid-Westchester. She is married to Jay, has two sons, a grandson & a granddog.
Lynn Schrayer, Governance Committee Vice Chair
Lynn Sachse Schrayer is originally from Detroit and has lived with her husband Skip in the Chicago area for over 26 years. She is a Young Leadership Award recipient in both communities. Lynn is a tax attorney who has chosen to spend the last 28 years as a Jewish philanthropist.  Lynn served on the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, Jewish United Fund Women’s Board from 1993-1999 upon her move from Detroit to Chicago.  She served as National Co-Chair of the UJA National Young Leadership Cabinet in 1998-1999 and Co-Chaired the National Washington Conference during her nine years on UJA YLC.  Lynn has held several officer positions at her synagogue, North Suburban Synagogue Beth El in Highland Park, Illinois, including a term as President from 2007-2009. She is a University of Michigan graduate and served a full term on the Board of Trustees of the University of Michigan Hillel, ending June 30, 2020. Lynn served on the Board of Directors of Prizmah: Center for Jewish Day Schools, from 2016-2019. Lynn is currently the Second Past President of Rochelle Zell Jewish High School (formerly Chicagoland Jewish High School) having served as President of the Board of Directors from 2015-2017.  She also serves as President of the school’s Endowment Fund. Lynn and Skip have three children.  Their two older children, Annie and Eli, are graduates of the University of Michigan and live in Chicago and New York respectively. Their youngest, Joey, is a junior attending the University of Michigan.      
Randall Kaplan, Nominating Committee Chair
Randall Kaplan is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Michigan Law School.  He began his legal career in 1981, serving as a judicial clerk on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, after which he practiced corporate and banking law at the firm of Caplin & Drysdale in Washington, D.C. In 1987, Kaplan returned to Greensboro to run the family business, Kay Chemical Company, the leading supplier of cleaning chemical programs to the fast-food industry.  Kay was acquired by Ecolab, Inc. in 1995. Kaplan remained as President of Kay until 2000 when he left to pursue new business ventures and greater public service. His business ventures include serving as the founding Chairman of SterlingSouth Bank (now a part of Pinnacle Financial), CEO of Capsule Group, a holding company in the real estate and car wash businesses, and founder of Elm Street Technology, a real estate internet software company. Kaplan has been active with over 20 local and national non-profit Boards.  In the Jewish world, Kaplan has served on the Boards of International Hillel, JDC, AIPAC and BBYO, and currently serves on the Boards of The Foundation for Jewish Camp, Leading Edge, and Camp Ramah Darom. His involvement with International Hillel included service as both Chair of International Hillel’s Board of Trustees and Board of Governors. In the secular world, Kaplan has served on many Boards involved in economic development, education and social services, including the Boards of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro (Chair), United Way (Chair), Chamber of Commerce, North Carolina Progress Board, and North Carolina Economic Development Board.  
Michele Rosen, Nominating Committee Vice Chair
Michele Rosen was born and raised in Los Angeles, where she first got a taste for political involvement from family, teachers, and the political movements in the '60s when she was growing up. Settling down in Seattle, Michele worked a number of jobs before getting involved with the Young Leadership Cabinet, which taught her how to secure resources for communities in need. This paved the way for her later work with Hillel, the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, and as the president of Jewish Family Services of Seattle. Currently, Michele is focused on technology distribution and disaster relief work.
Debra Stein, Outreach and Partnerships Committee Chair

Debra Stein is a former New York and Los Angeles based entertainment industry executive, where she held several positions, including Senior Vice President of Marketing and Public Relations for LIVE Entertainment. While at LIVE Entertainment, Debra was responsible for the international and home entertainment releases of company financed films with Miramax and for The Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgement Day boxed set. Prior to joining LIVE, Debra served as Vice President of Worldwide Communications for M.C.E.G./Virgin; served as Vice President of Publicity for Michael Douglas’ Stone Group Pictures and formed the boutique agency, Stein and Villines. Debra later served as Vice President of Special Projects for Warner Bros. based Morgan Creek Entertainment. After graduating from Hampshire College, Debra became a publicist in New York for ABC, where she worked in their radio division. Debra then joined Arista Record’s publicity department where she worked with label artists Whitney Houston and The Grateful Dead. Debra now resides in Scottsdale, Arizona. She is a member of the Copper State Leadership Council for the Arizona Democratic Party, the Circle of Friends of the Maricopa County Democratic Party, served as co-chair for Arizona Jewish Women 4 Joe and leads the JDCA’s Arizona Chapter.

Michael Tarnoff, Operations Committee Chair
Michael’s primary focus currently is his role as Chairman of Make Every Vote Matter, an apolitical, nonpartisan movement to promote the election of the President and Vice President by Popular Vote through education, advocacy and fundraising. From 1980 until his retirement in 2015, Michael Tarnoff was the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer (EVP & AMP; CFO) of the Jewish United Fund and Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago (the Federation), a position he held for 36 years. Michael continues to serve as consultant to the Federation and many other 501.c.3 charitable organizations and serves on the Boards of numerous for-profit and nonprofit / charitable entities. Prior to joining Federation, Michael held senior executive positions in the fields of investment banking, commercial banking, and commercial real estate development, and was a gold futures trader at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Michael holds an MBA degree from the Booth Graduate School of Business of the University of Chicago.
Marc Gary, Operations Committee Vice Chair

Marc Gary is the Executive Vice Chancellor Emeritus of the Jewish Theological Seminary, one of the preeminent institutions of Jewish higher education in North America. Before joining JTS in 2012, Marc had a distinguished career in the law, serving as Executive Vice President and general counsel of Fidelity Investments in Boston, one of the world's largest financial services companies, and BellSouth Corporation in Atlanta, a Fortune 100 telecommunications company. 

Marc also served as a federal prosecutor in the U.S. office of independent counsel in Washington, D.C. and as a partner and co-head of the litigation section of the international law firm of Mayer Brown and Platt. Marc is a member of the Board of Trustees and chair of the Ethics and Compliance Committee of the Neuberger Berman mutual funds and is the chairman of the Board of Trustees of the USCJ Supporting Foundation. He also serves on the board of directors of the lawyers committee for civil rights under law and the UJA Federation of Greater New York as well as on the board of counselors of Equal Justice Works. He is a member of the American law Institute. 

Among other awards, Marc is the recipient of the first Chief Justice Margaret Marshall award from the American Constitution Society for Law and Justice, the Judge Laurie B. Zelon Award from the Pro Bono Institute, and a special Commendation from the Supreme Court of Georgia in recognition of his outstanding service to the administration of justice. 

Marc graduated from Northwestern University with highest distinction (‘summa cum laude”) and from the Georgetown University Law Center where he was a member of the editorial board of the law review. He also attended the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He resides in Atlanta, Georgia.

Thomas Kahn, Policy Committee Chair
Thomas Kahn is a distinguished faculty fellow at American University where he teaches in the Government Department. He is also senior advisor to the Cormac Group, a political consultancy firm. Prior to that, he was the head of legislative affairs for three years at a major labor union. Tom worked for more than three decades as a senior staff member for the US House of Representatives. For 20 of those years, he was the staff director of the House Budget Committee. Tom is an attorney and practiced law at Sullivan and Cromwell before coming to Capitol Hill.
Tom has been a member of the board of Governors of the American Jewish Committee for more than 20 years and has served for eight years as chair of AJC Latino and Latin American Institute. He is also on the board of the Israel Policy Forum, Jewish Electorate Institute  and the National Coalition Supporting Eurasian Jewry.  He’s also a life member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Tom is married to Susana and they are proud parents of two sons, Ben and Daniel.
Marcie Hermelin Orley, Policy Committee Vice Chair
Marcie Hermelin Orley graduated magna cum laude from Cardozo School of Law and subsequently served as law clerk to Judge Avern Cohn of the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Michigan. Following the birth of her four children, her career has been as an active volunteer and fundraiser in the Detroit Jewish community. She is a Past President of the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit Women’s Philanthropy, and also served as Women’s Philanthropy Campaign Chair. In addition, Marcie was the Campaign Co-Chair of Detroit Federation’s 2017 and 2018 Annual Campaigns. She sits on Federation’s Board of Governors and is also a trustee of the Jewish Women’s Foundation. Nationally, she serves as a trustee of the Jewish Federations of North America, sits on the National Women’s Philanthropy Board and is Co-Chairing the 2019 International Lion of Judah Conference. She chaired JFNA’s National Federation/Agency Alliance from 2014-2017. She currently sits on the board of 70 Faces Media and on the Dean’s Council of the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University. Marcie is an alumna of UJA Young Leadership Cabinet and was recognized in 1997 with the Sylvia Simon Young Leadership Award by the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit. Marcie and her husband Rob were also honored with the Dreammaker Award from Hillel Day School of Metropolitan Detroit. She and her husband Rob are the parents of four children, Matthew (Samantha), Alex (Melisa), Jason (Ramona), and Olivia, and one grandchild.
Susie Stern, Programming and Public Engagement Committee Chair
Susan K. Stern is a community activist and political advocate in New York and nationally. She was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as Chair of the President’s Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. Her work focused on Human Trafficking. For her work on human trafficking, she was selected as one of New York New Abolitionists. She is a Commissioner and Immediate Past Chair of the New York State Commission on National and Community Service. She serves on the Executive Committee of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee.
Stern is the immediate past Vice Chair of The Jewish Federations of North America and created the International Lion of Judah Conference. She was Chair of the Board of UJA Federation of New York and is the  Founding chair of Time for Good the reimagining service for the New York Jewish community. She was named as a 2012 Women to Watch honoree by Jewish Women International, chosen for her leadership in enhancing the well-being of Jews worldwide and her work to form effective partnerships with faith-based and community groups. Susan is married to Jeffrey Stern. They have two sons, Michael (Janna) and Peter (Amanda), and four grandchildren.
Jill Goldenberg, Programming and Public Engagement Committee Vice Chair

After years of serving in leadership roles in political campaigns and with local and national Jewish organizations, Jill is honored to join the Jewish Democratic Council board. Professionally, Jill runs Goldenberg Solutions Group, a consulting firm based in Newton, MA, serving business and nonprofit leaders nationally. Drawing on her experience as both a nonprofit executive and a lay leader, her clients trust her to design and deliver effective development and governance strategies, career and executive coaching, management consulting, and board trainings. Jill is the former Executive Director of the Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education (PEJE) where she created and directed multiple development capacity-building programs, including Generations, which enabled 45 Jewish day schools to raise over $100 million in endowment funds in five years. She is also the former Associate Director of the Lawyers Clearinghouse on Affordable Housing and Homeless where she led development efforts and founded a legal services clinic for homeless clients at two shelters in Boston. Jill serves on the national steering committee of Jewish Women for Joe and on the board of the Jewish Electorate Institute. She has served as president of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston, co-chair of a successful capital campaign at the Rashi School, on the board of Boston’s Combined Jewish Philanthropies, and as development and governance chairs for multiple boards. She is a graduate of Boston University School of Law and the University of Michigan. Jill and her husband, Sidney Kriger, are the proud parents of two young adult children.

Directors
Rob Bildner
Robert (Rob) Bildner Mr. Bildner is an attorney, entrepreneur, investor, and author who is active in the non-profit community and public life. He founded several food companies, including RLB Food Distributors, a perishable food distribution and food manufacturing company, which he sold in 2007.  He is currently president of SME Co., a family office based in Montclair, NJ. Recently, Rob and his wife Elisa Spungen Bildner co-authored The Berkshires Farm Table Cookbook” (Countryman Press/W.W. Norton, 2020), named “New England Cookbook of the Year” by the Readable Feast.  Mr. Bildner is a founder and has been a key lay leader of several non-profit organizations in the Jewish and secular worlds including Foundation for Jewish Camp, (which he and Elisa founded), Repair the World, Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale, Community FoodBank of New Jersey, and Yale University. Rob has been active in politics since his student days at Yale College protesting the Vietnam War. He worked for civil rights and public interest groups, served as a state government official in New Jersey (Deputy Attorney General; Director of Consumer Services for the NJ Insurance Department; Member, New Jersey State Employment and Training Commission; and Chairman of Governor’s Commission on the Horse Racing Industry), interned in the Carter White House, and has been an active donor to the Democratic Party for years. Since 2016, he has worked with a national collaborative of political donors to support grassroots organizations and Democratic candidates, leading to the election of a Democratic majority in Congress and Joe Biden’s presidency (He was on the National Finance Committee for the Biden campaign.)   Bildner is the recipient of numerous honors and awards including NJ Monthly Magazine’s Retail/Wholesale Business Leader of the Year; Member of Charter Class, Leadership New Jersey;Torch of Learning Award (American Friends of Hebrew University); and the American Jewish Distinguished Service Award (Hebrew Union College) and Shapiro Prize for Excellence in Philanthropic Collaboration (Jewish Funders Network), both given to Rob and Elisa for their leadership advocating for Jewish camps. He was in the Wexner Heritage Program for Jewish lay leaders.   Bildner is a graduate of Yale College, the University of Pennsylvania Law School and has a Masters degree in Jewish Studies from the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York.    
Joel Breitkopf
Joel Breitkopf, Principal of Alchemy Properties, has been in the real estate industry his entire professional career. Joel is involved in all aspects of Alchemy’s developments and investments including acquisition, finance, design, construction, marketing and strategic planning and is a principal of Alchemy – ABR Investment Partners which acquires existing commercial buildings in select major markets. He joined Alchemy in 1993. Previously, he was an executive at Commercial Bank of New York and was Vice President of Acquisitions and Finance for Himmel+Meringoff Properties. In this capacity he oversaw opportunistic acquisitions and structured bank workouts in the early 1990’s. Joel was also a real estate loan officer at Chemical Bank Realty and, prior to that, an analyst at LaSalle Partners, a national real estate advisor.

In 2013, Joel started a music therapy program for Veterans with PTSD, called Healing our Heroes, at the Music Conservatory of Westchester where he is now the President of the Board of Trustees. He was also President of B’nai B’rith Real Estate, and has been affiliated with numerous other industry groups and charities. Joel has financed well over $2 Billion in real estate transactions and has acquired over 3,500,000 square feet of real estate during his career. He has lectured at the Yale University School of Architecture, the University of Pennsylvania, the Wharton Graduate School of Business, Cornell University and has been an Adjunct Professor at New York University’s Master’s Program in Real Estate. Joel is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Economics.

Joel co-leads JDCA’s New York Chapter.

 
Larry Feldman
A lawyer by training, Larry Feldman’s professional career includes Legislative Counsel to Congressman Stewart McKinney of Connecticut, Deputy Minority Counsel for the U.S. House of Representatives, Banking Committees Subcommittee on Economic Stabilization, Minority Counsel to the Committee on Productivity and Quality of Working Life, Minority Counsel to the Auto Industry Task Force and Assistant General Counsel to the Full Banking and Currency Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives. He opened his first Subway Sandwich location in the Capital Hill area. He then added franchise development contracts for Washington, Virginia, Maryland and Delaware. It all culminated in the creation of Subway Development Corporation of Washington, one of the country's leading franchise operations. This year Mr. Feldman celebrated over 45 years in the Subway franchise business opening over 1600 Subway restaurants. Having recently retired from Subway, he now is in the residential home building business in South Florida. An Ernst & Young “Entrepreneur of the Year” nominee, Mr. Feldman continues to receive awards for his business and philanthropic endeavors, including winner of the Washington Business Journal Philanthropy Award for Small Business, the Smart CEO Magazine Award for Excellence in Philanthropy and Southern Business Leader Magazine’s South Florida Business Leader of the Year and Palm Beach CEO from the South Florida Business Journal. Mr. Feldman and his wife, Diane were also honored as the first recipients of the Ruth and Norman Rales Humanitarian of the Year Award by the Jewish Family Service of South Palm Beach County Florida. The Feldmans travel the world on charitable missions and have helped raise millions of dollars for the American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association and a number of Jewish Charities. Believing that “we are all responsible for each other,” he has spent much of his life helping charities to benefit children, the elderly and infirmed. Through the blessings he has received, his mission is to give back to those with the greatest needs. In addition to serving on the Board of Directors of several businesses, educational, civic, and philanthropic organizations, he has served on the Board of Directors of The Pinecrest Academy, Congregation B’nai Israel, Chair of Boca Grove Plantation, the Boca Raton Hospital Foundation and the Executive Board of the Boca Regional Hospital. He has been actively involved in various positions with the Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County including, Campaign Chair and Chair of the Board of Trustees, until March, 2023, where he led a community-wide cadre of volunteers to raise millions of dollars for local communities, Israel and around the world. Mr. Feldman, a nationally acclaimed franchise expert is also a lecturer at numerous schools, colleges and universities and advisor to entrepreneurs and startup companies in the U.S. and abroad.
Hon. Dan Glickman
Dan Glickman is a well-recognized leader in the fields of agriculture, nutrition, hunger, bipartisan politics and public policy following a long career in the federal government, advocacy, the private sector and non-profit arenas.   Glickman is a senior counselor and chair of the International Advisory Board at APCO Worldwide and is a long-time board member and former lead director and Chair of the Governance Committee of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME Group), senior advisor to the U.S. Global Leadership Coalition, and recent past chairman. He is a distinguished fellow in Global Food and Agriculture at The Chicago Council on Global Affairs and an adjunct professor at Tufts University’s Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy in Boston. Glickman also serves as a senior fellow at the Bipartisan Policy Center, a D.C- based think tank that fosters bipartisanship; and a strategic advisor and counselor at The Russell Group.   The first-time author has written his memoir, Laughing at Myself; my Education in Congress, on the Farm and at the Movies, published by the University of Kansas Press in 2021.   Glickman has been actively engaged in promoting bipartisanship in the U.S. Congress, retiring as vice president of the Aspen Institute and executive director of its Congressional Program in early 2021 after 10 years. The program is a public policy education and civility-building program for members of the U.S. Congress.   He was a board member of the American Cancer Society Action Network; the domestic anti-hunger group Food Research and Action Center; Issue One, a cross-partisan political reform group; World Food Program-USA; past chairman and now a board member of the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research. He is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. He serves on the Advisory Boards of Francis Renewable Energy, an electric vehicle charging company, and Good Meat, a subsidiary of Eat Just, a cellular based meat company.   Glickman served as the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture from March 1995 until January 2001 in the Clinton Administration. While at USDA, Glickman oversaw the administration of farm and conservation programs, Meat and poultry food safety and related inspection programs, global trade in food and agriculture, civil rights enforcement impacting employees and other stakeholders, and the US Forest Service. Before his appointment as Secretary of Agriculture, he served for 18 years in the U.S. House of Representatives for the 4th Congressional District of Kansas. While in Congress, he was a senior Member of the House Agriculture committee and chair of the subcommittee on general farm commodities, the House Judiciary Committee and chairman of the subcommittee on Administrative Law and Government relations chairman of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence; and was a leading congressional expert on general aviation policy.   He served as chairman of the Motion Picture Association of America, Inc. (MPAA) from 2004 until 2010. Prior to joining the MPAA, he was the director of the Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics.   Before his election to Congress in 1976, Glickman served as president of the Wichita, Kansas School Board; was a partner in the law firm of Sargent, Klenda and Glickman; and worked as a trial attorney at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. He received a bachelor's degree in history from the University of Michigan, and a J.D. degree from The George Washington University. In recognition of his service, Glickman has also received an honorary Doctor of Philosophy from Kansas State University and an honorary Doctor of Laws from The George Washington University Law School.  
Steve Grossman
Steven Grossman is a former treasurer and receiver-general of Massachusetts and candidate for governor of Massachusetts. Steve previously served as chairman of the Massachusetts Democratic Party from 1991 to 1992, president of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) from 1992 to 1996 and chairman of the Democratic National Committee from 1997 to 1999. In the spring of 2015, Steve became the CEO of the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City, a Boston-based nonprofit focused on strengthening inner city economies that was founded by Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter. Prior to his involvement in politics, Steve worked at Goldman Sachs. In 1975 he left Goldman Sachs to work in his family paper supplier business, the Massachusetts Envelope Company, now known as the Grossman Marketing Group. In 2012, Asset International magazine name Steve one of the 100 most influential institutional investors worldwide.
Elaine Hamilton
Elaine Hamilton is executive vice president and officer of numerous high-tech and biotech companies in Silicon Valley including Geron, NetApp and Marvell Semiconductor, and currently sits on the advisory boards of two startup companies. She is vice president and chief operating officer of Hamilton Financial, which she owns along with her husband, Michael. Her community service includes sitting on the board of the Children’s Discovery Museum of San Jose, NOVA Workforce Investment and The Silicon Valley Starting Arts group. She also is on the board of directors for the Jewish Community Center of Silicon Valley. She has been recognized as a Federation Lion of Judah and a Friend of the Rabin Center in Israel. Elaine has a bachelor’s degree in education and psychology from the University of Iowa and master’s degree in organization development from University of San Francisco.
Amy Kaplan
Amy Kaplan recently retired after 17 years with the Jewish Federation of Cleveland where she served as Vice President, External Affairs, and Director of Government Relations.  In that capacity, she advocated on issues of importance to the Federation with Members of Congress, Senators and members of the Executive Branch, as well as with Ohio legislators and members of the Governor’s administration. Issues on which Amy has deep expertise include: the strong U.S.-Israel relationship; funding for safety net programs serving the most vulnerable in our society, particularly Medicaid and funding for seniors; tax policy; and in recent years, the need for government grants to enhance the security of vulnerable nonprofit organizations. Over the course of her career with Federation, Amy developed deep relationships with elected officials and their staffs and was passionate about engaging lay leaders in the important work of Jewish advocacy.  In 2010, she was honored by Jewish Federations of North America with the Len Lieberman Award for the most effective Jewish government relations professional. In Cleveland, Amy also developed the Joyce Garver Keller Institute for Jewish Advocacy, a biennial program for training lay leaders in advocacy that has become a model for JFNA’s work with Federations around the country. Amy is married to Ira Kaplan, Executive Chair of Benesch Friedlander and they are the proud parents of three grown children and two adorable granddaughters.
Stuart Kurlander
Mr. Kurlander has a long history of involvement in the Jewish community. He is a Former  President,  Resource Development Vice President and  Israel & Overseas Vice President of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington.  Stuart  currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Community Foundation. Stuart is Secretary,  President’s Cabinet Member,  Executive Committee Member and Member of the Board of  Directors of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC).  Stuart also chairs JDC’s Legal Committee and the Global Programming Committee.  Stuart  is also a Trustee of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy. Stuart is a strong activist for the Jewish LGBTQ community. He is a founder of the Jewish LGBTQ Donor Network. He was the first National Board Chair of Keshet (leading national grassroots organization that works for the full inclusion of LGBTQ Jews in Jewish life). He is the Founder and past Chair of the Kurlander Program on Gay and Lesbian Outreach and Engagement (GLOE) at the District of Columbia Jewish Community Center, selected by Slingshot as one of the 50 most innovative nonprofits in North American Jewish Life. Previously, Stuart co-founded the Hineni Fellowship for LGBTQ Jewish Leadership. Stuart is the recipient of several distinguished awards. He is an owner of WJW Group, which includes the Washington Jewish Week,  The Baltimore Jewish Times and the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent.  Professionally, Stuart is a retired Health Care & Life Sciences Partner with Latham & Watkins LLP having founded and chaired the firm’s Global Health Care & Life Sciences Practice and also the firm’s Global Israel Practice .  Stuart is currently a Senior Advisor at private equity firm Patient Square Capital.
Amb. Daniel Kurtzer

Daniel C. Kurtzer is the S. Daniel Abraham Professor of Middle East policy studies at Princeton University's School of Public and International Affairs. Following a 29-year career in the U.S. Foreign Service, Kurtzer retired in 2005 with the rank of Career-Minister. From 2001-2005 he served as the United States Ambassador to Israel and from 1997-2001 as the United States Ambassador to Egypt. He served as a political officer at the American embassies in Cairo and Tel Aviv, Deputy Director of the Office of Egyptian Affairs, speechwriter on the Policy Planning Staff, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Intelligence and Research. 

Throughout his career, Kurtzer was instrumental in formulating and executing U.S. policy toward the Middle East peace process. Secretary of State John Kerry appointed Kurtzer to the Secretary's Foreign Affairs Policy Board. Governor Chris Christie appointed Kurtzer to serve on the New Jersey-Israel State Commission. Previously, Kurtzer served as an advisor to the bipartisan Iraq Study Group, and as a member of the Advisory Council of the American Bar Association's Middle East Rule of Law Initiative. In 2007, he was named the first Commissioner of the professional Israel Baseball League.

Kurtzer is the co-author of Negotiating Arab-Israeli Peace: American Leadership in the Middle East; co-author of The Peace Puzzle: America’s Quest for Arab-Israeli Peace, 1989-2011; and editor of Pathways to Peace: America and the Arab-Israeli Conflict. He has authored numerous scholarly articles and op-eds on foreign policy issues. Kurtzer received his Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University.

Sherry Matusoff Merfish
Sherry Matusoff Merfish has had a long career in advocacy and fundraising. From 1993-2009, she served as a Majority Council Director for EMILY’s List, conceiving, planning, and implementing the Major Donor program in a range of states, including her native Texas.   Prior to her time at EMILY’s List, Sherry worked as an advocate within the Jewish community by engaging in speaking tours concerning the pernicious Jewish American Princess stereotype, an effort that resulted in widespread press attention and brought about a significant cultural shift. The work of culture change is at the heart of Sherry’s efforts, as exemplified by her co-founding with her daughters of an organization that asks women to join the conversation around reproductive justice by disclosing their abortion histories. This effort was inspired by Sherry’s own brave disclosure of her abortion in a 2013 New York Times op-ed written by her daughter Beth Merfish.
 
Sherry currently serves on the executive committee and the national board of New Leaders Council. She chaired the Advisory Board for Rice Gender Studies and the Board of the Houston Area Women’s Center.  She has served on the boards of Planned Parenthood, the Jewish Community Center, the American Jewish Committee and Gender  Studies at the University of Houston.
 
Sherry is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Texas at Austin. She holds a Master’s Degree in American Studies from the University of Southern California and a Law Degree from the University of Houston.
 
She and her husband of 51 years, Gerald Merfish, are the proud parents of two daughters and even prouder grandparents to four grandchildren.
Kevin Rader
Kevin Rader represented Broward and Palm Beach counties in the Florida State Senate from 2016-2020; his term ends on Nov 3, 2020. From 2008-2010 and 2012-2016, Kevin served in the Florida House of Representatives. While in the Florida House of Representatives, he was awarded Legislator of the Year awards from the Florida Beekeeping Association (2015), Associated Industries of Florida (2013), Florida Insurance Council (2013), Planned Parenthood of South Florida (2009), and the Florida Farm Bureau. Kevin lead on issues such as Holocaust education, child welfare, and environmental conservation throughout his time serving in the Florida Senate and House of Representatives. Kevin also helped lead on legislation that was passed after the 2018 Parkland school shooting to advance gun safety and an ongoing push to set up a top-two primary system in Florida rather than separate party primaries. Kevin is a member of the AIPAC New Leadership Network, the Glass Leadership Institute of the ADL, and the Palm Beach County Jewish Genealogical Society.  Kevin is an insurance agent and business owner, born in Detroit, MI. He graduated from Boston University with a Bachelors in Accounting.  Kevin is married to Rabbi Amy Leviten Rader and is the father to four children, Caleb, Ruby, Yael, and Ezra.
Josh Rolnick
Josh Rolnick is a writer, faculty lecturer, and leader in the Jewish community. His short story collection, Pulp and Paper, won the John Simmons Short Fiction Award, selected by Yiyun Li, and was published by the University of Iowa Press. His short stories have also won the Arts & Letters Fiction Prize and the Florida Review Editor’s Choice Prize. They have been published in Harvard Review, Western Humanities Review, Bellingham Review, Gulf Coast, and Storyville, and have been nominated for the Pushcart Prize and Best New American Voices. Rolnick teaches fiction writing at both the Johns Hopkins M.A. in Writing program in Baltimore, MD and Washington, DC, and the Sackett Street Writers Workshop in Brooklyn, NY. He is fiction editor of Paper Brigade, the literary journal of the Jewish Book Council. has worked as an editor or reporter at the Stanford Social Innovation Review, Congressional Quarterly, the Associated Press and Moment magazine. He currently serves on the board of trustees of the Jewish Book Council and the Lippman Kanfer Foundation for Living Torah.
Carol Smokler
Carol Smokler attended Smith College and graduated from the University of Michigan.  She received an MA and Ph.D. in Psychology from the University of Michigan.  She worked as a Clinical Psychologist for the Washtenaw County Community Mental Health Center and Chelsea Community Hospital in Chelsea Michigan.  She also had a private practice.  After more than 20 years of practice, Carol returned to school and completed post-doctoral training in Sports Psychology at Michigan State University.  She then worked in a sports medicine clinic and as a consultant to athletic teams, coaches, and individual athletes.  In addition, she was the first Sports Psychologist from Michigan to serve on the Olympic Registry working with individual Olympians as well as at the Olympic Festival. While residing in Ann Arbor, Michigan she served as a Board Member and Treasurer of the University Musical Society and a member of the Ann Arbor Hands-on Museum Board.  In addition, Carol was an active member of her local Jewish Federation where she was the Campaign Chair, founder of the Women’s Campaign and then President of the Federation. During her time in Ann Arbor, she began her long-term service to the national Jewish community.  She has worked as the President of National Women’s Philanthropy and National Chairman of Partnership 2000. Her personally most meaningful experience came from her 12 years as Chairman of the National Emergency Committee, including leading the Jewish community's response to 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina.  In addition, she has been a member of the Jewish Agency for Israel Board of Governors. Carol has also been a member of both the Board of Governors and the Board of Directors of International Hillel, where she was HR chairman and member of the executive committee. After moving to Florida in 2000 she worked to help strengthen and build the Federation of South Palm Beach County.   She was the founding chairman of the Overseas Committee, chair of the Leadership Development Committee and co-chair of the Committee for the Future. She continues to serve as a member of the Executive Committee. In the secular world Carol is a Member of the Board of Advisors of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, a member of the Kids4 Harmony (an El Sistema music program) in Berkshire County, Ma. and a member of the executive committee of Nephcure International. Carol and her husband, Irv, divide their time between Boca Raton, Florida and Lenox, Massachusetts.  They have three sons, two daughters-in-law and three wonderful grandchildren.

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