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Jewish Non-Profit Leaders Join Jewish Women's Theatre's Free Sunday Morning Event Via Zoom

Jewish Non-Profit Leaders Join Jewish Women's Theatre's Free Sunday Morning Event Via Zoom

Naomi is from New York. David lives in Atlanta. And Michelle calls Jackson, Mississippi, home. Yet all three will be at Jewish Women's Theatre (JWT) via Zoom on Sunday, May 17, at 11 a.m. PDT to share their stories in a Sunday Morning at The Braid event entitled Jewish Nonprofits: Making Mitzvot Across America.

"At this unprecedented time when we are social distancing and often focused on all the things we are not able to do, JWT decided to create a panel that could educate us about some of the incredible things that Jewish community leaders across our country are doing," says Ronda Spinak, JWT's Artistic Director, as she explains the reason for JWT's first coast-to-coast event. "Now, thanks to Zoom technology, JWT can introduce viewers to three remarkable Jewish nonprofits they might not know about but definitely should."

JWT's popular Sunday Morning at The Braid virtual events are free, and registration can be found at Registered participants will be directed to Zoom, and instructions for joining the program will be provided.

Panelists for this first-ever national JWT event:

a-? Naomi Firestone-Teeter, Executive Director of the Jewish Book Council, the nation's longest-running organization devoted exclusively to the support and celebration of Jewish literaturea-? David Raphael, Co-Founder and CEO of the Jewish Grandparents Network, the first and only national organization supporting grandparents as they promote new models of engagement for the benefit of families and our futurea-? Michelle Schipper, Executive Director of the Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life, that supports, connects, and celebrates Jewish life in the South

"This panel gives us the opportunity to meet three inspirational Jewish leaders who have thought-provoking stories to tell," says Maureen Rubin, Emeritus Professor of Journalism at Cal State Northridge and a JWT board member, who will moderate the panel. "In addition, these guests are creative, diligent, and very successful in taking ideas and turning them into programs and materials that benefit Jews everywhere through education and action."

Originally from Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Naomi Firestone-Teeter graduated from Emory University with degrees in English and art history and studied at University College London.

Prior to her role as Executive Director, she served as the Founding Editor of the JBC website and blog and Managing Editor of Jewish Book World. In addition, she has overseen JBC's digital initiatives and developed the JBC's Visiting Scribe series and Unpacking the Book: Jewish Writers in Conversation. She sits on the board of Jewish Creativity International. Naomi has been named a 36 Under 36 (2019) by New York's Jewish Week, one of the top 100 people positively influencing Jewish life by Algemeiner (2018), and was listed on IZZY's 2020 Global Jewish 100 list of people across the world who are moving Jewish culture forward.

David Raphael, the co-founder and CEO of the Jewish Grandparents Network (JGN), has spent his professional career in Jewish communal service. A graduate of Albany University and the Columbia University School of Social Work, he spent 30 years at Hillel in roles as Assistant International Director, Executive Director of Hillel of Greater Baltimore, and Senior Campus Liaison for Hillel International. David was also the founding Executive Director of the Floortime Foundation, an organization seeking to advance new approaches to treating children with autism spectrum disorders, and the Executive Director of the Maryland Teen Initiative, where he developed new approaches to engaging Jewish youth.

A native of Jackson, Mississippi, Michelle Schipper is a lifelong Jewish professional with a special commitment to Southern Jewish communities. She began her career as Assistant Camp Director at URJ Jacobs Camp in Utica, Mississippi, then left the South to continue pursuing her career in Jewish communal service. She moved to Los Angeles to work in several capacities at Wilshire Boulevard Temple Camps, then shifted from the camp world to the Jewish Community Center world, enjoying several positions within the Los Angeles JCC system working with families, teens, and day camps. She became Executive Director of the JCC of Greater Albuquerque, New Mexico, then returned "home" to Jackson to assume the position of Chief Operating Officer and then CEO of the Goldring/Woldenberg Institute of Southern Jewish Life.

For more information and to register, visit

Jewish Women's Theatre, voted one of the "Best Live Theatres on the Westside" three years in a row by The Argonaut, presents American Jewish stories, art, and other programming that highlights Jewish contributions to contemporary life. Now in its 12th season, JWT's salon theatre of original dramatic shows, each written to a specific theme, displays the diverse and eclectic community of writers, artists, and creators who celebrate Jewish life, one story at a time.

Learn more about JWT at:

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