Lynn Lancaster is Education Director of the Forest Hills Jewish Center Religious School in Forest Hills, NY. Lynn served as a mentor in all three cohorts of the Leadership Institute for Congregational Educators. She has a BA in Comparative Religion and Education from SUNY, a certificate in Family Education from Touro College and is a graduate of the Principals Leadership Institute. Lynn is the co-director and co-creator of the Sababa Surf Camp, a recipient of support from the New York Teen Initiative for Immersive Summer Experiences for Jewish Teens: Incubator for Emerging Experiences, a joint project of the UJA-Federation of New York's Commission on Jewish Identity and Renewal and the Jewish Education Project with support from the Jim Joseph Foundation.
Dr. Evie Rotstein
Evie Levy Rotstein is the director of the New York School of Education at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, having previously been the director of the Leadership Institute for Congregational Educators since the beginning of the project in 2004. Prior to this position she was a congregational school educator and developed programs for faculty learning, teen mentoring and parent education. Evie began her career in Jewish education as a camp director for Young Judaea. She holds an M.A. in Foreign Language education and a Doctorate in Jewish education from The Jewish Theological Seminary. Evie’s research interests include interfaith families, adolescent identity development, professional learning and mentoring. She teaches courses in the New York School of Education at Hebrew Union College –Jewish Institute of Religion and consults to congregations on various projects. Evie has published chapters in What We Now know about Jewish Education (2006), in The Gender Gap(2008), and in the International Handbook of Jewish Education(2011).
Rabbi Jodie Siff
Rabbi Jodie Siff serves the Reconstructionist Synagogue of the North Shore in Plandome, NY, where she directs the synagogue school and is active in every part of the congregational community. Jodie served as a mentor in all three cohorts of the Leadership Institute for Congregational Educators and is an active member of the Port Washington/Manhasset Clergy Association. She has created and published many rituals and is the co-author of the article "When a Child Leaves Home," published in Shema, A Journal of Jewish Responsibility. An alumna of Lehigh University, Jodie graduated from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College.
Yonni Wattenmaker is the Executive Director o f the Breast Cancer Alliance in Greenwich, CT. She has served as the Director of Education at Congregation Shaaray Tefila in Bedford, NY and at Central Synagogue in New York City. She earned a BA at the George Washington University and an MA in Religious Education at HUC-JIR in New York. Yonni has served on a variety of regional and national boards including the Association of Reform Jewish Educators (formerly NATE) and as a consultant on a plant-based diet for individuals and companies. She was a mentor for all three cohorts of the Leadership Institute for Congregational Educators.
Ira J. Wise
Ira Wise has served as Temple Educator at Congregation B'nai Israel in Bridgeport, CT since 1995. He consults with educators and congregations on curriculum, teacher training and adapting technology in the classroom. He served as a mentor in all three cohorts of the Leadership Institute for Congregational Educators. He is the author of several articles and books for religious schools. He serves as faculty at Eisner Camp and he blogs on Jewish education at nextleveljewisheducation.blogspot.com. He earned his MA in Jewish Education at the Rhea Hirsch School of Education at HUC-JIR in Los Angeles, CA. He is currently at work developing his Jewish Educational Theory of Everything - a unified field theory.