BJEP Leadership Team

BJEP Leadership Team:

Heather Renetzky, Education Director

Heather (she/her) will lead the teachers and guide our families through our BJEP program this year, and she can’t wait to welcome families back to the Brandeis campus!  Heather is a self-declared nerd for all things related to Judaism, psychology, and cooking. She is a rabbinical student at Hebrew College and loves exploring and sharing the depths of Jewish tradition (Holidays! Rituals! Texts!). Prior to rabbinical school, Heather worked as the program coordinator for J-Pride, which brings together the Jewish LGBTQ community in the Twin Cities. Her other roles have included teaching Talmud through cooking, and planning a retreat about the power of doubt, and selling bread. Most recently, Heather served as a chaplain at Mercy Hospital in the Twin Cities. You can often find Heather at Moishe House Somerville (where she lives), cooking way too much food for the people she loves and cuddling her dear black cat, Ikey.

Meet Heather at minute 3 talk about Zoom learning during Covid times, and laughing, in this Hebrew College Meet the Rabbinic and Cantorial students video.

Heather can be reached at director@bjep.com

 

 

Sarah Pollack, Director of Community Engagement

Sarah (she/her) is currently a Rabbinical School student at Hebrew College. Although she grew up in Florida, she now lives in Cambridge with her wife, Elana. After graduating from The University of Florida with a BA in Forensic Anthropology, Sarah moved to Jerusalem. She spent two years at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies, first as the Social Justice Fellow, and then on the Judaism and Conflict Resolution track. Her professional journey started at Encounter Programs, where she spent the next four years exploring the ways that Jewish American professionals and lay leadership engage with Palestinians. Sarah most recently worked for Honeymoon Israel as the Director of Community Engagement, empowering young Jewish families to explore their relationships to Jewish community and identity. Sarah is eager to bring her educational experience to BJEP this year and is curious to learn together about how to strengthen our work as learners.

For questions about the BJEP program, get in touch with Sarah for a chat: info@bjep.com.

 

 

Rabbi Myra Meskin, Rabbi-in-Residence (2021-2022), BJEP Community Director (2020-2021)

Ordained in 2020 by the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles, Rabbi Myra (she/her) discovered her passion for Jewish education while working at Camp Ramah in California as a counselor, educator and unit head. After graduating with a Masters in Experiential Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary, she spent a year in Jerusalem studying in the Pardes Experiential Educators Program. Rabbi Myra has served as the Assistant Director of the Brandeis Collegiate Institute (BCI), a 4-week immersive summer program for Jewish young adults, and as a spiritual counselor at Beit T’Shuvah, a residential addiction treatment center. She most recently worked as the West Coast Regional Jewish Educator for Moishe House. Originally from California, she loves yoga, hiking, and singing – whether alone in the car or with friends around a Shabbat table. Rabbi Myra joins the Boston Jewish community with her daughter Eleanor and husband Ben Gurin, also an ordained rabbi, by the Hebrew Union College, and a PhD student at BU.  Rabbi Myra will balance this role with her new role as Associate Director for the Maas Center for Jewish Journeys at the American Jewish University, including directing the California-based Ziering Brandeis Collegiate Institute, a Summer camp for Jewish adults.

Rabbi Myra will lead BJEP’s High Holiday services and our B’Nai Mitzvah Program, and can be reached:  rabbi@bjep.com.