Rabbi David and Dalia Appelrouth

Born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, Rabbi David holds a Bachelors of Talmudic Law from the Beis Yisroel Rabbinical Institute of Jerusalem as well as Rabbinic Ordination from the esteemed Rabbi Zalman Nechemiah Goldberg of the Jerusalem Court of Jewish Law. He has a professed love for piano, saxophone, and water skiing. He is currently enrolled in kollel in Ner Yaakov and studies in the Ner LeElef Institute in Jerusalem.


Dalia, a native of Miami Beach, Florida, is a graduate of the Wharton School of Business and holds a bachelors of science in finance and accounting. She also has a minor in Healthcare Management. After working in Manhattan for Ernst and Young’s litigation group, she currently is assistant director of Heritage Retreats www.heritageretreats.com.  Dalia has participated as a madricha for Aish HaTorah’s Fellowship programs and has lectured at various seminaries throughout Jerusalem.


Dalia and David are the proud parents of two boys, Raphael and Yehoshua Baruch. They can be reached at da720@bezeqint.net or by phone at (02) 581-9749 or from the US at 310-945-5775.


Eliyahu and Ariella Babad


Eliahu grew up on the streets of Far Rockaway, NY, then got too big for the streets and moved to the highway where the speed limit fit his needs better. He is currently on a leave of absence from Fordham University School of Law, now studying Jewish law in Jerusalem. Eliahu received his bachelor’s degree from Excelsior College in Albany, which included study at the Shaarei Tevunah Institute of Jerusalem that instilled a desire to return to Israel later on in life. Eliahu’s previous employment was at the New York County District Attorney’s Office where he put all the bad guys in jail forever, or almost.


Ariella, a native of Monsey, NY, always had a love of Israel and came to study in the Michlalah Jerusalem College for Women. After receiving her BA she continued her studies and graduated from Hunter College School of Social Work. She holds an LMSW with most of her experience in family therapy and couples counseling (particularly for herself and her husband). Ariella convinced her husband that law school would wait for him so he followed her there. In Israel, Ariella had the opportunity to pursue her true desire of not only living in the Holy Land, but also teaching Jewish topics which she currently does at JEWEL, Aish HaTorah’s women’s program.


They can be reached at blerbz@yahoo.com and would love to have Shabbat guests, especially when they return to the States.


Yossie and Faigie Bamburger

Hailing from England, Yossi and Faigie Bamburger are an energetic young couple.  Yossi is pursuing his rabbinical studies and Faigy is a successful kindergarten teacher.  Yossi runs an international real estate business in the morning and studies in yeshivas Mir in the afternoon.  He tutors at Jerusalem's Aish Hatorah in his spare time.   Faigy is also a jewelry designer and manufacturer. They have a beautiful little boy named Shimon who was born while they were on holiday in Wales.  Yossi and Faigy are fulfilling their dream of living in Jerusalem.  They can be reached at ybambi@gmail.com.

Rabbi Doniel and Esti Baron

Esti Baron currently teaches at Neve Yerushalayim College as well as at Tomer Devorah in Jerusalem.  Esti, originally from Manhattan, graduated from Touro college and completed coursework for her masters in Jewish history, after which she spent several years as a stock trader and then a market maker for a large NASDAQ trading firm.  Esti is also a licensed addicton counselor.  Esti's "Women and Judaism: Myths and Facts" discussions are a popular component of Israel Shabbat Experience weekends.

Esti grew up in upper, upper Manhattan's Washington Heights neighborhood, where she fearlessly developed her street smarts.

Rabbi Donnie  is a senior lecturer at Aish Hatorah in Jerusalem and also teaches at the Derech Institute and gives classes in Hebrew throughout the country.  He spent several years studying at the Mirrer Yeshiva, the Jerusalem Kollel, and Yeshivat Shaalvim.  Donnie is the director of the Israel Shabbat Experience and writes educational materials for www.jvalues.com.  He earned his bachelors degree from Yeshiva University and law degree from New York University School of Law. Before moving to Israel, Doniel practiced corporate law at Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP in New York's financial district.  Among other adventures, he was a congressional intern for Senator Joseph Lieberman and a clerk for the Israeli Supreme Court. He is currently a consultant to Outside Counsel Solutions, a legal outsourcing business.  He enjoys his family, biking and hiking.

Donnie grew up in Kew Gardens Hills, Queens, and saw it grow from a one kosher pizza shop town to the kosher swarma capital of New York.

The Barons live in Jerusalem with their three children and can be reached at (02) 582 4515, or by direct dial from the USA at (646) 536-9298.  Esti can also be reached at ebaron@aish.com and Donnie at rabbidonnie@shabbatexperience.com.

Jonathan and Kim Bash

Jonathan, originally from England, is an internet pioneer at the forefront of Jewish identity on the web.  He is a founding member of honest reporting (www.honestingreporting.com),  a spectular website that exposes media bias against Israel and the largest Israel media advocacy group in the world.  Honest reporting produced Relentless , a shocking documentary on the Arab-Israeli conflict.  He is currently involved in www.freemiddleeast.com, and a  new online Jewish university.  Jonathan has a law degree from Brunell University in London, and a masters degree in information technology from Aston University in Birmingham. 

Kim, from South Africa,  is the marketing genius behind Jonathan's efforts.  Articulate and knowledgeable, she was instrumental in launcing many of Jonathan's creative ideas.  She engaged in studies at the South African Academy of Dramatic Arts.  An entrepenuer, Kim started her own business in South Africa.

 The Bashs live in Jerusalem's Old City with their beautiful daughter Chava.  They can be reached at +011 (972) 54 441 5704 or by email at jonathanbash@lineone.net.

Daniel and Maria Beider 

Daniel hails from London England and earned his law degree from Cambridge University.  He has worked as a foreign exchange trader for the Chase Manhattan Bank and was an associate director of corporate finance at the Royal Bank of Scotland.   He currently involves himself with exciting sundry pursuits in and out of Jerusalem – schmooze with him for details.

Maria, also from London, is a graduate of Edinburgh University where she graduated with honors in Spanish and History of Art.   She teaches in Jerusalem’s Anglican International School, a unique institution which caters to children of Israelis, diplomats, and Israeli Arabs. 


Despite their higher education and English demeanor, the Beiders are also lots of fun.


The Beiders live in Jerusalem’s Har Nof  surrounded by the rolling green hills of the Jerusalem forest with their three children.   Email them at beiderdaniel@yahoo.co.uk or mariabeider@hotmail.com or  call them at +011 972  2 651 5991.

Raffi and Chana Bilek

Raffi Bilek, originally from Montreal, Canada, is currently a rabbinical student in the Old City of Jerusalem.  He received his undergraduate degree in Computer Science at Brown University, where he also ran a pro-Israel political group and sang in an a cappella choir.  After college he spent a year teaching computers to children in downtown Brooklyn.  In addition to all things rabbinical, Raffi enjoys singing, playing harmonica, unicycling, and billiards.  He was once  popular for his swing dancing lessons.


Chana Bilek was born in Tague City, South Korea, and raised in Richmond, Virginia.  She studied psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University, where she founded Hillel on campus.  After college she spent a year studying in seminary in Jerusalem, followed by a year as a dorm counselor.  She is currently studying towards a master’s degree in sociology through University of North Texas.  Chana’s interests include ballet, camping, and playing in playgrounds.


The Bileks can be reached at +011 972 2 532 4580 or by email at raffi@alumni.brown.edu.


Rabbi Menashe and Ellen Bleiweiss


Rabbi Menashe (Mark) Bleiweiss currently serves as director of Ner LeElef’s Campus Jewish Identity Training Program. He is also a licensed tour guide throughout the Land of Israel, a member of the Domestic Violence Unit of the Neve Yerushalayim Family Therapy Institute, maintains a private therapy practice, and teaches Torah in the Jerusalem area. He lectures frequently on Jewish education, history, and psychology in Israel and the United States.
Rabbi Bleiweiss was born in Middletown, Connecticut, in 1966. At age four his family moved to Southern California. He is a graduate of Thacher High School in Ojai, CA, and received his Bachelor of Arts Summa Cum Laude from the University of California Berkeley in 1988, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, among other academic honors. In 1994 he received his Master of Arts in Psychology from Manhattan College. In recent years he was a Jerusalem Fellow, director of Yeshivat Hamivtar in Efrat, cofounder of Nesivos Torah Tours in Eastern Europe, and editor of the quarterly journal Jewish Spectator. For many years a widely published writer, he learned advanced Jewish Studies in Meretz Kollel, Pardes Institute, and received a Wexner Fellowship to study as a RIETS rabbinic student at Yeshiva University.
In 1991, overlooking the Old City of Jerusalem, he married Ellen Kaplan, who he met when she was President of the UC Berkeley Hillel. In 1989 Ellen received her Bachelor of Arts Summa Cum Laude from UC Berkeley (she also was elected to Phi Beta Kappa, among other honors) and, in 1994, she received her Masters in Social Work from Yeshiva University. She is presently a housewife and a certified aerobics instructor.
Rabbi and Mrs. Bleiweiss made aliyah in 1994 with their eldest daughter, and today live in Telzstone, a Jerusalem suburb. Their children are Shifra (born 1993), Yannai and Gamliel (born 1994), Naomi (born 1997), Tzipora (born 1999), Elisha (born 2000), and Hillel (born 2004). The Bleiweiss family enjoys learning Torah, swimming, hiking,and Jewish music.  Contact them at jsisrael@netvision.net.il.


Eli and Faigy Blumstein

Eli originally from Woodmere, Long Island is now studying Jewish Law in the Jerusalem Kollel. He is a happy go lucky kind of guy, who loves to have a good time... In the past, he has run youth programs in summer camps and all year long. He has taken a psychology course on counseling in Refuah Institute under the tutelage of Professor Riche as well as an education course at Torah Educator's Institute (TEI). He is a talented composer, whose compositions have been featured on many Jewish music albums. He gets his high from Torah.

Faigy originally from Brooklyn New York received her BA in Psychology from Touro College. She is now continuing her studies here in Israel to become a school psychologist. She has plans to receive a PsyD and open a private practice to help children. She spends her time cooking, shopping and taking care of her adorable 6 month old baby girl Yael.

Everyone knows if they are looking for a good Shabbos meal or just to chill, the Blumstein's do it right.

The Blumsteins can be reached at Theblumis@gmail.com, or +011 972 582-7435.

Jesse and Chanie Boiangiu

Jesse recieved his Bachelors in Psychology from Yeshivah University and is completing his Masters Degree in Jewish Education from Azrieli Graduate School for Education and Administration. He is currently in his last year of Semicha at Yeshivah University's Isral Kollel, where they live, in Jerusalem. In his spair time, Jesse can be found teaching classes at a nearby Post-High School Yeshiva, refinishing bathtubs or making videos of his kids to send back to the grandparents in New York.

Chanie recieved her Bachelors in Psychylogy in Psychology from Brooklyn College and her Masters Degree in Occupational Therapy from Columbia University in New York City. Chanie has been volunteering at a Pediatric Rehabilitation Hospital as an OT here in Jerusalem, as well as attending classes at the Medrashiya Learning Program for Advanced Judaic Studies in Jerusalem. She now spends her spare time as a full time Mother and Wife here in Jerusalem.

Born and raised in Brooklyn, NY Chanie and Jesse Boiangiu both felt that they needed to get away and live in a community where there were more Jews, so they have spent the last two years living in beautiful Bayit Ve'gan in Jerusalem, Israel together with their three children Chaya Shalva, Yossee and Yehuda. The Boiangius can be reached either at jboi1234@aol.com or at (718) 554-7720.

 Akiva and Aliza Bookman

Born and bred in the heart rock and roll (Cleveland, Ohio) Akiva learned at Baltimore's prestigious Ner Israel Rabbinical College.   Akiva is a currently a real estate maven in Jerusalem's exclusive Rehavia neighborhood.
You can see him scooting around Jerusalem on his moped.  An all around sportsman, Akiva also considers himself an amateur actor.

Aliza grew up in Chicago Illinois and moved with her family to Israel in 1996.  She received a bachelor's degree from Touro College in psychology and is involved in family counseling.   She spearheaded a volunteer program at a Jerusalem orphanage and has raised almost $100,000 for them.   She is also well known for raising money for needy brides.

The Bookmans live in Jerusalem with their two beautiful children.  They can be reached at +011 972 2 566-4264 or from the US at (845) 234-4371 or by email leezers34@aol.com.

Rabbi Avi and Chaya Cassel 

Avi, originally from Great Neck, NY is currently studying in the Mirrer Yeshiva in Jerusalem.  He is also involved part time with the Jerusalem Fellowships Learning Program in the Old City of Jerusalem, as well as assisting in directing the Ner LeElef Outreach training programs.  Avi spent 6 years studying at the Ner Israel Rabbinical College in Baltimore, MD, and spent a short time studying in Beth Medrash Gavoha in Lakewood.  He has been involved with many outreach programs, including project SEED in San Diego, CA, Cape Town, South Africa and Cincinnati, OH.

Chaya, born and raised in Queens, NY, earned a bachelors degree in Computer Science from Queens College and Thomas Edison State College.  She is currently working full time for the accounting department of a major US company out of her home in Jerusalem.  Her other full time job is raising the Cassel's 2 and a half year old daughter, Fraydie.   Many people - boys and girls - have had the privilege to taste her delicious cuisine.  The Cassels love to have guests every week for Shabbat, and can be contacted at their Israeli telephone number 02-538-8641, or via email at cassel1@bezeqint.net.

Michael and Marcy Charish

Michael grew up in a Conservative Jewish family that lived in Philadelphia; Los Angeles; West Hartford, Connecticut; and South Orange, New Jersey.  Around the time of his bar mitzvah, he began a spiritual journey that ultimately led him to yeshiva study in Israel bringing him to Yeshivat Hamivtar in Efrat, Yeshivat Har Etzion in Alon Shvut, and Yeshiva University in New York.  Michael has a B.A. in Philosophy from the University of Pennsylvania and a J.D. from NYU School of Law. 

Michael met Marcy – born and raised in Woodmere, New York – at the legendary Hebrew Academy for Special Children (HASC), where they spent a combined eight summers working with developmentally disabled children.  Marcy spent a year studying in a seminary called Michlala in Jerusalem before continuing on to Barnard and NYU and graduating with a B.S. in Occupational Therapy.


Michael and Marcy lived in Riverdale, New York and Teaneck, New Jersey, during which time Marcy worked as an Occupational Therapist in schools and clinics and Michael practiced as a litigation attorney in the New York law firm of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, one of New York's most respected law firms, where his clients included Martha Stewart.  They have been blessed with five children, and in the summer of 2006, fulfilled their dream of moving to Israel by making aliya to Hashmonaim.


Marcy and Michael’s many and diverse interests include learning and teaching Torah, sports, music, and hiking.  Shabbat is the highlight of their week and they’d love to extend the Shabbat Experience by hearing from you.  You can reach them at macharish@gmail.com or +011-972-8-929-8187.


Yehoshua and Nava Coren

   Yehoshua Coren was born and raised in < xml="true" ns="urn:schemas-microsoft-com:office:smarttags" prefix="st1" namespace="">Lincoln, Nebraska (yes, there are Jews there!)  Yehoshua holds a B.A. in Psychology from Columbia University and received Rabbinic Ordination from Yeshivat Pirchei Shoshanim in Jerusalem.  After five years of recruiting for Tochnit Shalem, a post high school Israel program, Yehoshua now spends his days learning at the Sulam Yaakov Yeshiva and working as a Search Engine Marketing Consultant for a large business to business furniture company.   Yehoshua loves percussion and often times takes a break from his hectic Shabbos preparations on Friday afternoon to turn up the Santana and jam along on his djembe. 

Nava Levine-Coren grew up in Bayswater, New York.  Nava received her Bachelors of Fine Arts in Illustration from the prestigious School of Visual Arts in New York City.  She currently works as a free lance illustrator and calligrapher, designing and writing ketubot amongst other projects.  Some of her work can be found at her website, www.artbynava.com.

Yehoshua and Nava made Aliyah in 2005.  The live in Jerusalem's Nachlaot neighborhood with their two children, Orli Bina Malka and Shmuel Tzvi Ohr Chadash Yesod Shalom, where they strive to follow the derech ('way' or 'path') of their Rebbe, Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, ztz"l.  They are active members of their community and would love to have you join them for Shabbos.  Feel free to contact Yehoshua at ycoren at gmail dot com.


DovBer and Rochelle Cowan

DovBer was born in London, England and although he never took tea with the Queen he filled his time with music, sports (football – not soccer) and adventure activities.  After two years at Birmingham University in the UK, he exchanged to McGill in Montreal where he graduated in 2002 with a BA degree in History. After traveling in Nepal, the Middle East, (and Scotland!) and putting a Jewish folk/rock band together in London, he felt the need to synthesize his burning passion for Judaism with a commitment to study Torah from the  most authentic  and inspiring sources. He arrived in Jerusalem in the fall of 2003 and since then, has been studying full-time in various yeshivot whilst teaching courses on Jewish Spirituality and History.


Rochelle was born in the same year as her husband, albeit on the other side of the world in the resplendent city of  Melbourne, Australia. As you would expect for an Australian,  her upbringing involved plenty of barbies (BBQ's for those without a basic knowledge of Aussie culture) and trips to the outback. After excelling in her studies in Physical Therapy at Melbourne University she traveled to the UK where she met DovBer, before making it to Israel, where they were married in 2005. The sunshine of their life, Sara,  was born in October 2006 and loves Shabbat .  They would love to hear from you – dovber99@gmail.com.

Rabbi Jamie and Ilana Cowland 

Jamie is a talented educat0r at the forefront of efforts to renew Jewish identity worldwide.  He has lectured across the globe and is training a new generation of Jews to reach out to their communities.  He currently heads vocaishon, which places talented individuals in different growing Jewish communities.

Ilana is a respected international lecturer and her relationships and women in Judaism seminars are very popular highlights of an Israel Shabbat Experience weekend. 

The Cowlands live in Jerusalem with their five beautiful children.  Touch base with them at jcowland@aish.org.uk.

Reuven and Gitty Epstein

Born and raised in Brooklyn NY, Reuven Epstein holds a bachelors of Talmudic law from Yeshiva Torah Temimah. Growing up with five older sisters, Reuven expressed his masculine side by dabbling in construction and playing as much basketball as possible. He is an organized 'doer' who enjoys teaching and helping others. He currently studies in the Jerusalem Kollel under the auspices of Rabbi Yitzchak Berkavitz and has become a certified Rabbi. He helped found a unique charity in Jerusalem which distributes food to over thirty families on a weekly basis.

Growing up in Scranton Pa has given Gitty Epstein an open mind and a kind heart that can be sensed upon meeting her. She is an energetic 22 year old who currently works in the finance department at Aish Hatorah overlooking the Kotel in Jerusalem, Israel. Her father founded The Jewish Heritage Foundation in Scranton to help enlighten families and reconnect them to their Jewish roots. Growing up in such an environment has definitely instilled a strong sense of responsibility and leadership into an already talented individual. She is the backbone behind everything her husband does as she helps the two of them grow every day!
They look forward to being contacted at reuvenepstein@yahoo.com.


Tovia and Rachel Factor

The Jewish Japanese FactorThe Story. In 1968, in Honolulu, Hawaii, Rachel Factor was born, Christine Frances Masaye Horii. Nicknamed Tina, she was raised in a non-religious home and attended a private school founded by Christian missionaries. During junior high school Tina discovered dance as a form of creative expression for her tortured teenage soul. By the time she reached high school she was deeply ingrained in the community"s theatrical productions and had already decided on a career in the performing arts. Much to her parent"s dismay, she moved to Los Angeles and landed work as a dancer in music videos, film and television. She then moved to New York to appear in the Broadway productions “Shogun, the Musical”, “Miss Saigon” and Radio City Music Hall as a World Famous Rockette as well as numerous off-off Broadway productions including Shakespeare's “Othello” (Desdemona), "The Tempest" (Miranda) and “A Midsummer Night's Dream” (Hermia).

At age 29 Tina met a nice Jewish boy, Todd Factor, and, after 2 1/2 years and a conversion to Judaism by a Conservative beis din, the couple married. On August 6, 2002, Tina and Todd had their first son, Ariel, and with his birth came many changes.

On the day before Passover, 5763, she entered the mikveh a second time, this time supervised by an Orthodox beis din or court, and emerged Rachel. Ariel followed suit (at eight months old he took the dunk in his father’s arms) and 4 months later, just a few weeks before Rosh Hashana, the family packed their bags and moved to Eretz Israel. Todd, now Tovia, Rachel and Ariel settled happily into their new home, Yerushalayim and on the 18th of Sh’vat 5764, they welcomed their second son, Shalom, into this world. His bris took place in Mea Sharim, his sandak was Rav Elyashiv.

 The family now calls Yerushalayim their home where Tovia learns full time in Kollel, Ariel attends a fabulous Hebrew gan and Ema and Shalom study Hebrew, shop in the souk and cook for Shabbos while still finding time to sing, dance, act and write between loads of laundry and dirty diapers. Life is beautiful for the Factors.  Read the interview at http://www.aish.com/spirituality/odysseys/The_Jewish_Japanese_Factor.asp.  The Factors can be reached through their website at www.rachelfactor.com  They can also be reached in Israel by dialing directly from the US at (212) 561-5349.

Refael and Elana Farhi

Refael was born and bred in Deal on the New Jersey shore. An all star athlete, Refael was scouted by a college baseball recruiter.  He declined the full scholarship to Harvard (okay, it was MIddelesex County Community College) and opted to spend some time in Jerusalem instead.

A baritone trained by the same voice teacher as Michael Jackson, Refael abandoned formal voice lessons years ago.  Growing up on the shore, Refael tried surfing as well and succeeded in not falling off the board.


Raised in Flatbush, and trained at the prestigious Touro college, Elana is a jewelry fashion designer who worked with the famous Julius Klein.   Her love for Israel and dream of spending time there led her to delay her lucrative career as a high end designer. 


Contact the Farhis on their US line in Jerusalem (718) 618-5820 or by email at refaelfarhi@yahoo.com and elanafarhi@yahoo.com.


Avi and Sarah Fried

Originating from “the mile high” city of Denver, Colorado, Avi is presently concluding his Rabbinic studies at Yeshiva University’s RIETS Gruss Kollel. Avi received his Masters in Administration and Supervision from Loyola University in Chicago.  Avi teaches classes on Torah topics and works with Yeshiva students in Jerusalem.  He enjoys organizing programming for various holiday events and loves spending his summers working with young adults.  


Sarah, formerly from New York, has her masters in Social Work from Fordham University. She is currently teaching in Midreshet Darkeinu, a seminary for girls with learning disabilities, and works in Michlalah Jerusalem College for women.  Sarah’s passion for music thrives by giving guitar lessons and through the music program she runs in the summers. 


Contact the Frieds at afried613@gmail.com. 

Daniel and Lauren Gefen

Daniel hails from Stamford Hill in London, England.  Well known for his humor and wit, he enjoys entertaining Americans.  Daniel graduated from Hasmonean in London and received his ordination from Rabbi Zalman Nechemia Goldberg in Jerusalem.  He enjoys tennis and other outdoor sports.

Lauren grew up in Los Angeles, California.  A high school drama queen, she always enjoys the spotlight.  Lauren discovered Israel on her birthright trip with Israel Outdoors in 2004 and later studied at Jerusalem's Neve Yerushalayim College.

The Gefens are moving to Los Angeles where Daniel a campus rabbi at University of Southern California- feel free to drop in.  Email them at rabbig613@gmail.com.

Rabbi Shlomo Gelbtuch

Rabbi Shlomo Gelbtuch was born and bred in New York, and is a proud New   Yorker.      Rabbi Gelbtuch studied at the famed Tiferes Yerushalayim Yeshiva in Manhattan and received his Rabbinical Ordination in Jerusalem. While studying in Israel, Rabbi Gelbtuch met his wife,   Batsheva, who remained with him in Israel for a few years, while Rabbi Gelbtuch continued his studies.  From there they moved to Georgia. 


Rabbi Gelbtuch brings his unique charm and warmth to the Jewish student body of UGA in Athens. He loves the big city, but is getting used to the "quiet" life at UGA. He enjoys singing and dancing with just about anyone and loves spending time with his wife and two kids.  Rabbi Gelbtuch can be reached at: 404-917-3965 or email  shtubes@gmail.com.



Elie and Batsheva Ganz


 By all accounts Elie should either be dead or in jail. A list of his escapades would include: hitchhiking across and around the U.S. and Canada, descending the 600 foot Flatirons of Boulder, CO in the middle of the night (after 5 hours of climbing), being chased by an ostrich, a motorcycle accident (don't tell his mother), riding an unbroken paint horse across the Nebraskan plains during a thunderstorm, a chance encounter with an alligator in Louisiana and marriage. He considers the latter to be his most challenging and fulfilling endeavor (somehow the two always seem to go hand in hand). While he considers teaching to be his calling, previous career experiences include construction worker, wilderness guide and musician. Somewhere in the middle of all this he earned his rabbinic ordination from the Shor Yoshuv Institute in New York and has spent the last five years teaching Judaic studies to high school students.


Batsheva was born and raised in a relatively stable household in Toronto, Canada. In a brash act of defiance, she married Elie. She often wonders what she was thinking.  Among other accomplishments, she received her B.A. in Art Therapy from Lesley University, trained as a Montessori educator, runs Kindermusik classes for local families and is the full-time mother of two unquestionably adorable children.  She enjoys long walks on the beach, breathing, and writing in second person.


Keep in touch with the Ganzs at rabbiganz@gmail.com and 011-972-52-627-6207.


Rabbi Yom Tov Glaser


Rabbi Yom Tov Glaser was born in Hollywood, California. He grew up at the foot of the mountains, with the Pacific Ocean nearby.  He began surfing at a young age, and as the son of a surf-wear manufacturer, Yom Tov grew up traveling around the world on surf-travel expeditions.   On the days when the waves were small, little Yom Tov took to the hills and became a hard-core mountain biker, another sport that he actively pursues til today.  See his extreme outdoor video  here.    A lover of music, Rabbi Glaser has been playing Music professionally for over two decades.  In England, he’s known as the Jewish Bob Marley!  While Rabbi Glaser spent the majority of his life surfing  6-8 hours a day, he accumulated vast insights into human character, religion and alternative spirituality.  Check out his Chanuka candlelighting here. His formal degree of Bachelor of Arts, he attained at the University of California in Santa Barbara.  He moved to Israel in 1991 where began to explore his Jewish origins studying at the Aish HaTorah College of Jewish Studies.  After six years of intense study, Rabbi Glaser received ordination. Today, Rabbi Yom Tov prays in Meah Shearim in the Pinsk Karlin shul, where every word of the service is screamed at the top of one's lungs.  He is a student of a Chasidic Rebbe who is a spiritual dynamo on the cutting edge of kabbalistic research and practice.  Rabbi Yom Tov is the Rebbe’s main disciple, and can be found sitting at the Rebbe’s table, soaking in his teachings, often into the wee hours of the night.  Rabbi Glaser has also trained under a top Russian psychologist and now practices spiritual therapy, helping both individuals as well as groups to come closer to the G-d experience.


Rabbi Glaser now resides in Jerusalem with his wife Leah and six lovely kids. He studies, teaches, plays music and adventures in Jerusalem and travels often internationally sharing what he call “transformational education.” He can be reached at yglaser@aish.com.


Dovid and Chanie Goldshtyn


Dovid was born in the Ukraine, raised in Brooklyn, and currently lives in Beitar Illit, Israel. An avid reader whose favorite pastime is devouring books on Science and History, Dovid is also a 2nd degree black belt in Karate.  Dovid is currently a senior lecturer at the Discovery Seminar in Jerusalem, and has taught on numerous occasions for fellowships, birthright, and other organizations.


Chanie, a fifth generation American, was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY.  Her love of Israel and dedication to the Jewish people have brought her to Beitar where she actively supports her husband's busy teaching schedule.  Having gotten paralegal training, she is a senior employee at Lease Probe, a major legal firm specializing in lease abstracting.

Dovid and Chanie have been blessed with two wonderful little boys, Tsvi, 4, and Nathan, 1.


Feel free to contact Dovid and Chanie at dovideliezer@gmail.com.


 Etiel and Ariella Goldwicht


Etiel Goldwicht, 25, was born in Israel and grew up in Manhattan.  After graduating Yeshiva University, majoring in Finance, he spent the next two years studying at Ner Israel Rabbinical College in Baltimore.
Coming back to NY he studied for a Masters in Education and met his beautiful wife Ariella. In 2005 they got married and moved to Jerusalem, Israel and were blessed with a beautiful baby boy named

Ariella grew up in Teaneck NJ. After graduating High School she studied a year abroad in Jerusalem. Coming back to NY she entered Parsons School of Design perusing her long time passion for graphics and art. She then met her husband Eitiel and is finishing her degree in Media Design while raising Eliyah. Ariella's portfolio includes a designing a restaurant and clothing boutique in Israel and she is ready for more creative pursuits. Email Etiel at
ETLG18@aol.com and Ariella at Anfjaf@aol.com, or call them at +011 972 625 9578.


Rabbi Ben and Debbie Goodman


Rabbi Ben dropped out of high school in favor of beginning a career in the finacial industry, working on the floor of the the London futures exchange.  After a series of providential events, he left the floor of the exchange for the Holy ground of Israel, and began to pursue his Jewish studies  in Yeshivas Ohr Somayach in Jerusalem. After returning to England and studying in the yeshiva at Gateshead, he and Debbie were married and moved to Israel. Ben joined the Midrash Shmuel Institute of Talmudic Studies, located in the Sha'arei Chessed neighborhood of Jerusalem, where he now heads the beginners department, Aliyos Shmuel. He enjoys ATV and hiking adventures in the wilderness.


Debbie grew up in London and attended seminary in Israel. She returned to the University of London where she received her counseling degree.  She was also an event coordinator at Hillel in London.


Debbie and Ben, and their 4 beautiful children, live in Jerusalem and can be reached at +011972 52 552 6647, +011972 2 622 1316 and at rabbibenishtov@yahoo.com.


Rabbi Yaakov and Sara Grossman


Yaakov was raised in Queens, New York and is currently teaching Talmudic Studies and Jewish Philosophy in the Midrash Shmuel Institute of Talmudic Studies, located in the Sha'arei Chessed neighborhood of Jerusalem. The path which led Yaakov to his current position on the teaching staff of the Yeshiva, passed through Kew Gardens Hills NY, Washington Heights NY, the Old City of Jerusalem, Great Neck NY, Queens College (B.S. in Computer Science), Goldman Sachs, Midrash Shmuel itself, and many public golf courses (although his handicap doesn't reflect that!).


Sara was raised across the San Francisco Bay, in the city of Lafayette. Deciding to leave the University of Oregon for a junior year abroad, Sara enrolled in the Hebrew University of Jerusalem at Mount Scopus. While in Jerusalem, Sara took the time to study in classes at the Neve Yerushalayim girls semenary. She returned to New York, where she worked for the National Councel of Synagogue Youth (NCSY), leading Jewish culture clubs in New York public high schools. These schools included Bronx Science HS, Stuyvesent HS, Forest Hills HS, and others. Sara currently works as a part time aerobics teacher, part time beautician, part time labor coach / doula (registered DONA), and a full time mom... somehow finding the time to also take part in multiple weekly Jewish studies classes.


Sara, Yaakov and their 3 beautiful boys, Moshe Zecharyahu, Menachem Yehosua, and Yedidyah, currently live in the Ramat Eshkol neighborhood of Jerusalem. They can be reached at (02) 540-1497, on their VOIP line at (718) 874-2073, or via email at sarayaakov@yahoo.com


Rabbi Ilan and Ruthie Halberstadt


Ilan hails from the city of London and graduated from University College London with a degree in psychology.  He has learned at some of Israel's finest yeshivas.  Popular for his unique delivery style and warm personality, Ilan has lectured at Cambridge and Oxford Universities, and was a guest rabbi in Capetown South Africa, and taught at  Hasmonean Academy in London.  Ilan also headed several youth organizations in London.  He enjoys "football" (we call it soccer) and is an all-star sportsman.  


Ruthie grew up in Israel, South Africa and England, but feels most at home in Israel.  She studied at Gateshead Teacher's Collge in England.  Known for  her thought provoking educational women's programs, Ruthie has taught at Hasmonean Academy in London, and teaches at several seminaries in Jerusalem.  The Halberstadts have three beautiful children and live in the Jerusalem suburb of Telz Stone.  Ilan can be reached at 01197254-624-0058 and Ruthie can be reached at 01197254-624-0059. 


Lippy and Fraidy Heller


Highly intelligent, well read, and with little secular education, Lippy hails from Toronto, Canada. A brilliant pianist, Lippy showed signs of major talent from the youngest age.  A super sportsman, Lippy can be spotted on ski slopes worlwide from Saint Moritz to the Canadian Rockies. He is a direct descendent of a prominent rabbinic dynasty and currently learns at the Jerusalem Kollel in - you guessed - Jerusalem.


Fraidy, from the acclaimed and colorful Boro Park section of Brooklyn, taught high school to Russian immigrants for several years.  A talented artist and designer, she is currently completing her interior design degree at Magen College in Jerusalem.


The Hellers  live in Jerusalem with their georgeous daughter Faigy.  Call the Hellers at +011 972 2 538-0585 or from the US at (718) 859-2695.  Email them at lippyheller@yahoo.ca.


Gavriel and Michal Jacknin


Gavriel, or "Gabe," was born in Port Jefferson, Long Island way out in Suffolk County, but came to his senses and moved to beautiful Kew Gardens Hills in Queens, New York when was 7.   An all-star athlete, tennis champion, and avid runner, Gabe was the captain of his Tennis and Track team at the world famous Francis Lewis High School in Queens, and ran the New York City marathon at the tender age of 20.  You can spot him in his jogging gear on some of Jerusalem's leafier streets.  A graduate of SUNY Binghamton, Gabe  has a Bachelors of Science in Marketing and Management.  Gabe loves to juggle and has dabbled in amateur acting.


Michal grew up in Monsey in New York.  A talented singer from a musical family, Michal's solos have the been highlight of many productions.  She founded the summer Jewish Outreach program at Camp Sternberg.  A lover of the outdoors, when she was 17, Michal  fearlessly crossed the United States with an extreme outdoor group.  She is currently learning graphic design in Jerusalem.


The Jacknins live in Jerusalem's Ramat Eshkol neighborhood and can be reached at +011 972 77 782 9019 or by email at gabeo@rocketmail.com.  


Rabbi Fred and Adi Kahn


Fred and Adi made aliyah with their three children this past September. Fred is a rabbi and an accountant. He graduated Yeshiva University’s Sy Syms school of Business where he majored in accounting. He then went on to receive Semicha from Yeshiva University. He studied in both Yeshivat Hakotel and Yeshiva University’s Gruss kollel in Israel. Before making aliyah, Fred worked for Ernst & Young in their New York City office. While Fred spends much of his working time in Accounting he takes every opportunity he can to spread his love of Torah. He has guest lectured in many Yeshivot across the country and opens his home to many for a Shabbat experience.  The Kahns can be reached at afkahn@gmail.com or by direct dial from the United States at 201-379-5010.

Jonathan and Sara Kalmus

You’ll have to excuse us but we’re English – Jonathan, originally from London studies Jewish philosophy in Israel and also works as an ethical/eco journalist. He studied Philosophy at Leeds University (don’t worry if you haven’t hear of it). Sara (his lovely wife), originally from Manchester, studied Engineering at Oxford University and now works as a patent writer for a company in the U.S. She is also the proud mother of Leah, who attended U.C.B. (University of Cuteness in Babyhood) and now continues to be cute in her spare time. That’s all from us, please keep in touch.  Email us at jonkalmus@yahoo.co.uk or saraddonner@hotmail.com.

Shimmy and Emuna Kaufman

Hailing from Monsey, New York, Shimmy comes from a family that runs an organization which has sent thousands  of young Jews on subsidized trips to Israel.  Carrying on the traidition, Shimmy fearlessly lead the A E Pi Jerusalem roadtrip this summer.  Shimmy visited in Israel five years ago while in high school, and was so drawn that he has lived here ever since.  On his many visits to a family close to his parents (dad roomed with his dad and mom roomed with his mom years ago) Shimmy discoverd Emuna, his bride.   Born in Israel, Emuna grew up in the Nevey Yaakov suburb of Jerusalem.  She teaches special education to 11-13 year old boys.   The Kaufmans live in Jerusalem's beautiful  Old City and can be reached at +011 972 628 3111 or by email at shimmykaufman@yahoo.com.

Rabbi Shmuel and Esti Kimchi

Rabbi Shmuel hails from London, but after a brief stint in the United States, decided that Israel was the place to be.   He has a masters degree in education from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.  He is also an ordained rabbi.


Esti is also from London, where she taught Jewish studies on a high school level.  She has bachelors degree in psychology from Thomas Edison University.  She is also a certified birthing coach and a talented ballet dancer who has taught numerous dance classes.


Last summer, Shmuel and Esti roamed the rain forests in Costa Rica and scaled the volcanos of Guatemala and spent some quality time with South American Jewry.  The Kimchis have also ran several adventurous tours throught the land of Israel.  They can be reached at +011 972 2 885 1826 or at shmuelkimchi@hotmail.com.


Rabbi Benzion Klatzko - Rabbi K

Rabbi "K", is an ordained rabbi, a music producer, successful author, and a Mohel.  Dubbed the  "Hollywood Rabbi,"  for years Rabbi K delivered a popular monthly class in Jewish thought to many of Hollywood's biggest stars.   Rabbi K was a regular face on the UCLA campus where he worked with JAM (www.jamoncampus.com), a local group connecting students to their Jewish identity.  After living in Los Angeles  for several years, Rabbi Klatzko now lives in New York with his wife and 9 beautiful  children.  Yes 9 - no typo.   Even the United States House of Representatives has recognized Rabbi K as a "Distinguished Gentleman making a Difference to his Community!"  Today, Rabbi K is the "Godfather" of Jewish trips and experiences, and works closely with organizations which have dedicated millions of dollars toward Jewish identity.  He is involved with over twenty Jewish trips around the world, partially or fully funded, including a free ulpan trip for those wanting to learn Hebrew. Quoth the rabbi:  "Want to go anywhere, at any time?  Call me and I'll make your wish come true."  If you are in the New York - New Jersey Metropolitan Area - ask him to join you for coffee and you may walk away with a scholarship.  Watch Rabbi K's three year old son getting his first haircut! Must see footage.   He can be reached at (310) 709-8042 or via email at sagewannabe@aol.com.

Alex and Tova Landa  

Alex Landa was born in Kiev, Ukraine and grew up in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. A Rutgers University graduate and a former Wall Street analyst. He served as a Paratrooper (tzanchan) in the Israeli Army from Aug 2002 to Jan 2004 in Ramallah, Shechem, and Gaza.  Alex and his unit were recently deployed in Lebanon for active duty where they faced extensive combat and narrowly escaped; read about it here.  Alex has spent several years studying at Aish Hatorah, the Mirrer Yeshiva and is currently studying and the Jerusalem Kollel.

Tovah, originally from Montreal, Canada, is a graduate from Stern College for Women and holds a bachelors in Psychology. In addition, Tovah has a Masters degree in Special Education from Hunter College in New York. She worked for several years as a special education teacher in New York City as well as in Jerusalem.

The Landas currently live in Jerusalem with their daughter Rivky. They can be reached at (02)532-3908 or in the U.S (856)283-4126.

Benjy and Aviva Landau

Benjy and Aviva arrived in Jerusalem from London a year ago to pursue Torah studies.  Benjy graduated from University of Westminster with honors in Business.  He is an avid "football" (i.e. soccer) player.  Aviva graduated from University College of London in history and is a talented musician.  The Landaus live in Jerusalem and can be reached at 011 972 2 532 7272 or by email at benlandau@hotmail.com.

Rabbi Gadi and Eve Levy

Rabbi Gadi was born and raised in Germiston(where??), in South Africa.  He  moved to Israel when he was 18 and has a Bachelor of Talmudic law from the Medrash Shmuel Institue of Talmudic studies in Jerusalem.  He packpacks across Europe  for entertainment.  Rabbi Gadi also enjoys mountain climbing and water skiing, and is an avid squash enthusiast.  He currently teaches at Shaarei Yerushalayim in Jerusalem's Har Nof neighborhood.   Gadi also runs the Canadian franchise of www.sukkahmart.com (ever hear of a portable sukkah? Check it out...)    Born in Montreal, Eve grew up in Calgary and went to high school in Toronto. Eve is a popular certified aerobics trainor and is completing her Bachelor's degree in psychology at Touro College in Jerusalem.  She is also a talented Israeli dance teacher at several Jerusalem seminaries.  She also teaches art in Jerusalem. The Levys live in Jerusalem with their two children and can be reached at 011972 2 651 8878 and by email at gadiandeve@yahoo.com.

Yitzchak and Ellie Lieblich

Hailing from London where Yitzchak managed real estate, Yitzchak now runs a world class graphic design and web business from Jerusalem and also learns in Yeshiva.He loves, travel, skiing and biking, and of course, meeting other Jews.


Ellie grew up in scenic upstate NY.  A world traveler, she spent several months in Kenya on a human rights mission.   She graduated from New York City’s Pace University with a degree in Middle Eastern studies. 


The Lieblichs live in Jerusalem and would love to keep in touch.  Reach them at elleshlang@gmail.com or at (646) 688 2998 or from Israel +011 972 54 532 4413.


Isaac and Shuly Mashiah

Shuly and Isaac Mashiah were married in August, 2006 in Jerusalem.  They make their home in the Rechavia section of Jerusalem, just a twenty minute walk from the Old City.


Shuly was born in London, England, and grew up in the neighborhood of Golders Green.  She is a teacher of Jewish studies to females ages 16-23, and has taught for four years in London and six years in New York, a portion of which for Ateret Torah, a Bet Yakov Sefardi/Syrian institution.  Shuly also comes from a musical family, and teaches singing-voice development to girls ages 8 – 21.   In June of 2005, she decided to make a permanent move to live in Israel.


Isaac is of traditional Sefardi e'dot hamizrach (Iraqi/Syrian) background, having grown up both in Seattle WA and in the Flatbush section of Brooklyn, NY where he attended Yeshiva of Flatbush H.S. and Brooklyn College.  Isaac has a business background; he has run his own toy company and helped build and maintain the laser eye surgical business for a surgeon in New York.  In May of 2005, just two months after returning home from a ten-day organized trip with Aish HaTorah to Israel, he made aliya to live in Israel as a citizen, and enrolled in full-time yeshiva learning at Aish HaTorah in the Old City of Jerusalem where he just completed his second year.  He currently works full-time in the office of the Rosh Yeshiva of Aish HaTorah, Rav Noah Weinberg.


Both Shuly and Isaac consider it a privilege to be joining you on your very special trip to Israel, and hope to succeed at enhancing your experience. Email them at Naviebleu@aol.com.


Aaron and Goldie Morgan

Aaron was born and raised in Ottawa, Canada.  After graduating from the exciting world of Actuarial and Statistical Science and working in the field for 2 years, Aaron decided to quit his high powered and succesful job to go milk cows on a kibbutz in Israel.  This led him to 3 years learning in yeshiva.  Since his aliyah, Aaron now dedicates part of his day to his Torah learning and part of his day working as a mortgage broker in Israel, helping North Americans settle the Land of Israel.


Goldie, originally from Bogota, Colombia, was raised in Toronto, Canada from the age of two.  She has a bachelors degree in psychology from York University.  Goldie participated as a madricha on the Jerusalem Fellowships and also spent time working as an advisor at the world renowned Discovery Seminar in the old city of Jerusalem.  She enjoys spending time with people, especially their baby girl, Eliana Banana Morgana.


The Morgans made aliyah two years ago to Ramat Beit Shemesh, just outside of Jerusalem.  They love to keep in touch and can be reached at morganaaron@yahoo.com and goldieinisrael@hotmail.com or +011-972 -2-992-1660.

Rabbi Menachem and Debbi Nissel

Rabbi Menachem and Debbi Nissel live in Jerusalem with their nine beautiful children. Menachem is an internationally known speaker who inspires audiences worldwide with stimulating presentations spiced with twisted British humor. He is the author of several books including his popular work on women and prayer, “Rigshei Lev,” published by Targum Press. He answers questions on line with “The Nissel Files” at www.ou.org/ncsy and is the rabbinical advisor for a trendy website for seminary graduates, www.jemsem.org. He is a senior lecturer in talmud at Torat Shraga Yeshiva and lectures in various Jerusalem seminaries. Menachem has an MBA from City University Business School in London and has worked in the past as a journalist, bar tender and as a mediocre guitarist in a band that never made it.

Debbi is from Memphis and tolerates British humor. She is a full time mum and a full time listening ear to countless seminary students. She also works at B’not Torah Institute. She has given hope to numerous newlyweds by being the unwitting author of “Chocolate Chip Challah and other awesome recipes from Debbi Nissel’s kitchen”. Debbi is a graduate of Memphis State University and is an erstwhile aerobics instructor.


The Nissels can be reached at +011-972-2-651-8043 and mnissel@gmail.com. Book early for Shabbat!

Rabbi Anthony and Sarah Manning

English-born, Anthony and Sarah met at Oxford University, where they both studied law and gained

Masters degrees. They married after graduation and moved to Hendon, North West London, becoming

very involved in the vibrant Jewish community there. Anthony developed a successful career in the law

and became a Partner in a City of London law firm. Sarah worked in marketing and PR, representing a number

of significant Rabbis, and ran a series of major adult education conferences with international guest speakers.


The Mannings made Aliyah with their children, Asher and Yael, in 2002 and Anthony left the law to be

a full-time Rabbi and teacher. They now live in Har Nof, on the edge of the Jerusalem Forest.  Anthony teaches

in a number of Yeshivas and Seminaries, specialising in practical Jewish law and ethics and contemporary

issues, while teaching his students how to speak proper English!


Baruch Zev and Amalia Olenick


Baruch Zev Olenick hails from Los Angeles California.  He graduated from Vassar College where he hosted a radio show on the college’s WVKR station, interviewing James Earl Jones and other interesting guests.  Shortly thereafter he embarked on a spiritual journey which took him across the globe.  He moved on from meditating with Jewish Buddhists to studying herbal Chinese medicine and energy healing.  His adventures took him from a New Age retreat in upstate New York, to London where he lived for 6 months working as a delivery boy for a diner, and as a clerk at a now famous hippie shampoo store, to Arizona where he spent several months with “farmer Dave” learning sustainable agriculture, and a ski resort in Colorado where decided that snowboard instruction was not for him. He later found himself in Berkeley California where he earned a degree in somatic “movement therapy training” at a local school, and also spent time living with friends in a post hippie mansion in San Francisco. 


He then joined the Hollywood scene and worked with a documentary film company, and it was then that Baruch started connecting more to Judaism.  He soon fell in love with Israel after staffing a Young Judea trip, and thereafter made aliya and married Amalia.  


Amalia Olenick grew up in Tev Aviv.  She later moved to Monsey NY where she earned a BA at Rockland Community College, and her Masters in Special Ed at Damon College.  She soon returned to Israel and married Baruch. Amalia is licensed hypnotherapist in New York State and works with autistic children.  Email the Oleniks at bz@isralight.org.


Rabbi Joel and Shelly Padowitz


Rabbi Joel Padowitz founded Palladium Capital Advisors, a New York-based NASD-member investment bank, in 2003, and serves as its President and CEO.  Rabbi Padowitz spent twelve years studying in various yeshivas in New York and Israel, and is an award-winning writer, having previously authored a syndicated newspaper column on modern Jewish thought as well as the soon to be published book "Spiritual Accounting: A Practical Guide to Permanent Change." Rabbi Padowitz earned his MBA from Israel's Bar Ilan University and holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation.  Shelly, originally from New York's Long Island, is well known in her community for her kindness and hospitality.  She is a sought after Jewish educator, having worked in the field of Jewish leadership for more than a decade.  Shelly is also a graphic designer by training, with a degree in fine arts from Stern College and FIT in Manhattan.

The Padowitzs moved to London with their family to serve as the director of Aish UK in London. The Padowitzs (Including Yonah, 6, Meira, 4, and Kayla, 2) would love to keep in touch with all the friends they met on the Israel Shabbat Experience and can be reached at jp@palladiumcapital.com or at (646) 485-7297.

Rabbi Lipman Podolsky 


Rabbi Lipman Podolsky is one of Jerusalem's most inspiring speakers and has shared his wealth of knowledge and warm delivery with thousands of inbound tourist groups and students.  Rabbi Podolsky was born and bred in Bangor, Maine and studied physics and engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Has been living in Israel for 20 years. Rabbi Polodolsky teaches at various Jerusalem institutes of higher learning. He also produced a CD of original songs in Hebrew. He can reached at lipman.podolsky@gmail.com. 

Unfortunate postcript: Rabbi Podolsky passed away in Jerusalem in the Spring of 2007 after a prolonged illness. He joined us for shabbat several times despite undergoing chemotherapy treatments, was an inspiration to us all, and we miss him dearly.  If you knew him, you can email rememberrabbip@shabbatexperience.com for information on subsidized Israel trips in his memory.  He is remembered by his sign off at his famous class at Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh - "may we all merit to live life as it should be lived."  We believe he did. 

Rabbi Yosef and Temima Richards

Rabbi Yosef Richards has always had a passion for Jewish education. A skilled teacher, he has been working with Jewish students since he was a youth leader in England at age sixteen. He has worked for several Jewish organizations including, the Federation for Zionist Youth, Young Judea, Aish HaTorah and Yeshivat Lev HaTorah. He has been spent the last several years learning in Yeshivas in Jerusalem and is currently studying at the Jerusalem Kollel.

Tmima, originally from Toronto, loves to fill their Shabbas table with guests, and is known for the 'South African' hospitality that she learned from her parents.  She spent time studying at Neve Yerushalayim and was qualified as a graphic designer at Maalot Yerushalayim/Zaidner Institute.

The Richards would love to keep in touch with you. Please call: + 011 972 2 582-7108 or email: caren_ricahrds@yahoo.com

Jacob and Julie Rupp

Jacob and Julie Rupp grew up in the sunny state of California.  Julie was born in Hungary until her family moved to Los Angeles, California when she was seven.  She attended the University of California, San Diego, where she helped found a Jewish sorority and was active in Hillel and other Jewish clubs on campus.  She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in family therapy and counseling.  She enjoys cooking, traveling, and sleeping in whenever she can!


Jacob Rupp was born in San Francisco, California, and he grew up in a small town about forty five minutes east which is home to more cows than people.  He also attended the University of California, San Diego, where he served as the president of the Union of Jewish Students and met Julie.  He followed her to Israel after college in hopes of learning more about his heritage.  He is currently studying at Ohr Somayach Yeshiva.  Jacob is a talented artist and writer; you can check him out at www.breslovworld.com.


Jacob and Julie live in Jerusalem and would love to meet anyone passing through. They can be reached at jacobrupp@gmail.com or by phone at +011 972-2-540-0168.

Rafael and Pearly Sait

Rafael and Pearly Sait and their five children live in Ramat Beit Shemesh- a suburb of Jerusalem. After moving to Israel six years ago from Manhattan, their home has continuously be open to their students and friends alike. Anyone needing a place to go or a warm meal could find it at the Saits. Rafael has been teaching in different yeshivos and seminaries in and around Jerusalem as well as lecturing at the world famous Discovery Seminar. Growing up as the youngest child of a respected art dealer also gave him an appreciation of modern contemporary art and he remains involved in his late father’s art gallery.

Pearly Sait grew up in Israel and switched gears after the family moved back to Israel from working in computers to real estate.  She is now a respected real-estate agent in the Bet Shemesh and surrounding areas. In her spare time she also takes care of their five children, including the most recent identical twin additions.

The Saits can be reached (direct dial) at (646)-536-7346 or at +011 972 2-999-8865 and by email at rpsait@012.net.il.

Rabbi Bentzy and Aviva Schechter


Born and bred in Monsey, NY, Bentzy has lived and studied in Lakewood, NJ and Jerusalem, Israel for several years, before returning to live with his family in Monsey in August of 2006. While in Israel, Bentzy coordinated study programs at Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh, formerly Yeshivat Hakotel, in addition to teaching and tutoring in several post high school yeshivas throughout Jerusalem. He was also a member of the Israeli Hatzala (first response team) as well as Zaka (search and rescue team). Bentzy currently works for the Afikim foundation in NY, NY as the director of campus outreach initiatives.


Aviva hails from St. Louis, Missouri. She earned her bachelors degree in special education from Thomas Edison College and her MA in speech and language pathology from the University of North Texas. She currently works as a speech pathologist for Wellspring, an early intervention agency in Monsey, NY.  Although she services the 0-3 year old population, Aviva enjoys working with children of all ages. She has held various positions as  teacher, therapist and counselor in the classroom and camp setting where she has worked with both typically-developing and special needs children.


After residing for 6 years in Jerusalem, the Schechters now live in Monsey, New York with their four children, who range, in age, from 20 months to 6 years old. They enjoy entertaining guests in their home and take pleasure in cultivating long lasting relationships with the people they come in contact with through their lines of work and otherwise. They can be reached at (845)578-5611; Bentzy can be reached at bentzys@gmail.com and Aviva at avivaschechter@gmail.com


Brian and Shalva Schneider 

Brian was born and raised in the leafy upscale city of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, but traded the fun in the sun for the dark and dreary Ithaca, New York, while attending Cornell University.  With an industrial engineering degree in hand, he wasted no time and immediately accepted a “prestigious” offer (much to his parents’ dismay) from the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity.  Two years of greasy fast food, cross-country road trips, and dirty fraternity houses nearly did him in, so he “retired” back to  Florida to work as a software engineer for a healthcare technology start-up at the height of the 1990s technology boom.  Needless to say, the 1990s came and went and so did the techno-boom.  With no one left in the bankrupt company to boss around, Brian decided that rabbinic life would be much more interesting, so he packed his bags for Israel in the spring of 2003 and has been living in the Holy Land since.  Currently, he is plunging the depths of Jewish law and philosophy at Aish HaTorah in the Old City of Jerusalem.


Shalva, the more rational of the two, grew up in Woodmere, New York and spent two years studying in Jerusalem before returning to Manhattan to finish her degree at Stern College.  Rather than hit the road like her soul-mate, she chose to hit the books and earned her Masters degree in Social Work and is currently writing her dissertation to complete her Doctorate in Education Administration.  As if she wasn’t busy enough, she worked for 5 years at the Hebrew Academy of Nassau County as the school’s social worker until Brian swept her off her feet and brought her to the land of milk and honey in the summer of 2006.  She’s currently the Coordinator of Student Affairs at the prestigious Tomer Devorah Seminary in Jerusalem.


Brian and Shalva currently live in Jerusalem’s historic Rechavia neighborhood and would love to have you over for Shabbos just pick up the phone!  Calling from Israel: +011 972 2 563-4212 or calling from America: 516-750-4057 or by email at Shalva21@aol.com or BrianLSchneider@gmail.com.


Rabbi Yossie and Baila Semel


Yossie, originally from  Belle Harbor, NY, has spent eight of the last nine years here in Israel. He is currently studying in the Mirrer Yeshiva together with 4000 other students. Yossie has received Rabbinic Ordination from Rabbi Zalman Nechemiah Goldberg of the Jerusalem Court of Jewish Law. He is also assistant director of the Ner Le’Elef Outreach training program and has himself been involved in various outreach projects in San Diego, CA and Cape Town, South Africa.


Baila, grew up in sunny Los Angeles, CA. She currently works three part-time positions. One is Avrahom, the other Dovid, and the third Yitzy (and she doesn’t even get paid overtime!).  Her and her crew love to have guests for Shabbat so contact them at  their Israeli number 02-532-5849, or via e-mail at ybsemel@bezeqint.net.


Rabbi Gidon and Miriam Shoshan

Originally from Chicago, Rabbi Gidon Shoshan now teaches Jewish Philosophy and Talmud at David Shapell College of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem.  He travels several times a year in the US, meeting students and teaching Torah on some of America’s most popular and prestigious college campuses.


From 2002-2004, Miriam and Gidon dedicated their energies to expanding Jewish programming in West Los Angeles, opening their home to Jews from all backgrounds and sharing their warmth and insight in venues ranging from Caltech to Dodger Stadium. 


Miriam, Gidon, and their three children live in Ramat Bet Shemesh, a small town in the Jerusalem country-side.  They are eager to stay in touch with participants and can be reached from the US at gidon@shoshan.com and (718) 360-5328.


Shlomo and Adina Stilerman


Shlomo, hailing from Brooklyn, NY, was brought up in a Torah observant home with a warm atmosphere and a love for every Jew. He served as a director for a non-profit organization called JEP (www.Jepli.org) for three years, spreading Jewish awareness and education to thousands of children countrywide. With a sad heart, he tore himself away from the little smiling angels to whom he became so attached, and moved to Israel with his wife to study Jewish Law at the Jerusalem Kolel while functioning as a licensed investment adviser for Sayaset Capital Management. He loves to jam on his guitar with his musically talented wife, and his favorite pastime is chatting with JetBlue representatives about their interesting lives (you should try it some time!).  
Adina grew up in the sand and sun of Miami Beach, Florida. Post high- school graduation, she spent a year in Israel studying at Bnot Torah Institute. She then returned home to pursue her degree in Business Management at Florida International University, but wishing she would one day make it back to the Holy Land. She was able to follow her life-long passion by shlepping her new (and bewildered) husband to Israel one week after they married. Adina currently works for Partners in Torah, an organization that connects Jewish adults from around the world with their heritage. She loves music, singing and acting, living in Israel, and most of all cooking up a storm for the many guests that grace their table each Shabbat.  Please contact them if you are ever in Jerusalem at astilerman@shabbatexperience.com.


Dan and Alli Sturgess

  Daniel was born and bred in Greater London, before leaving for the lush green beautiful city of  Exeter (yes there's beauty in England!) where he gained a degree in Maths and Spanish.  After a 3 year course and a year learning in Spain he decided to explore other horizons; his Jewish heritage and where better to do it but Israel.  For a couple of years he studied in yeshiva in Jerusalem before returning to England to work for IDT.  He helped lead many trips of Jewish students to Israel and US and was involved in various Jewish student centres in London.  He is known in the Greater London area of Chigwell for his invigorating, capturing High Holiday Explanatory Services.  Apart from his love for Torah he loves the odd tinkle on the piano, football and basically any games anyone's got to offer!


Alli was also born and bred in Greater London, not far from Daniel. She was a successful county athlete and hockey player, avid dramatist who performed in various semi-professional performances and was fascinated in every religion under the sun apart from her own, Judaism.  Growing up next to her Hindu next door neighbours, she took quite a liking to their festivities and dressing up in saris.  In 1999 she went on an Aish Fellowships trip to Israel (long story how she actually decided to go on the trip!) and surprisingly loved the experience and realized the depth of her heritage and religion.  After the trip she left for the beach town of Swansea, Wales where she gained a Psychology BSc.  She gained various counseling and drug therapy certificates and housed the homeless as a profession before she started working for Events in a UK Jewish centre.  In 2005 she pursued her interest of Judaism by studying in Neve Yerushalayim seminary in Jerusalem.  She is midst her Life Coaching Diploma and Counselling Psychology MA.  She still dabbles in acting here and there and loves anything where she can be creative!


Alli and Daniel married in 2006 and left for Jerusalem where Daniel continues his Torah Studies with the hope of ordination and Alli works for Jerusalem Fellowships, helping students from abroad come and have fun in Israel.  She also teaches leadership and life skills in some seminaries in Jerusalem.  If you want to be in touch call: 011 972 543 169867 or email dsturgess@tiscali.co.uk.


Rabbi Tzvi and Miriam Sytner


 Although he is from sunny Los Angeles, Tzvi enjoys snowboarding, winter sports and running.  A great lover of the Jewish people, Tzvi has conducted Shabbat Experience-esque programs in Des Moines, Iowa and in South Carolina.  He was also on the staff of an extreme outdoor camp.  A former public school teacher, he is also a talented breakdancer and public speaker.   Tzvi received his bachelors degree in liberal arts from Thomas Edison University and his masters in education from the University of Bridgeport. 

Miriam hails from Far Rockaway, New York.  She enjoys snowboarding with her husband and shares his passion for outdoor sports.  Miriam received here bachelors degree in psychology from Queens College, and nursing degree from Downstate.  Prior to moving to Israel, she worked as registered nurse in the Intensive Care Unit in New York's Long Island Jewish hospital.


The Sytners live in Jerusalem.  Call them directly from the US at (310) 728 -6242, from Israel at +011 972 2 582- 4695 or email them at TzviSytner@gmail.com.


Motty and Sarili Weinstock


Sarili was raised in  Vienna ,Austria where she spoke German, Hebrew, Yiddish, and (yes!) even English. After graduating from the Wiener  Hochschule she moved to Northern England to study childhood education and computers. Upon returning to Vienna in 2003, she directed the Chabad kindergarten for secular Jewish kids.

Motty (Mottie, Mutti, etc.)  started out in West Brooklyn hoping to see the world one day. After several years of  studies and work in UK, Switzerland,& South Africa, (but not Nepal), Motty felt ready to settle down  in Jerusalem.

Though loving every minute of it in Israel, the Weinstocks are heading west to San Francisco where their hospitality and two little ones are sure to keep you all coming back.

They can easily be reached at wmotty@gmail.com or in Israel (til October) at 052-540-8052.



Rabbi Raphael and Vivianne Willig


Raphael was raised in Riverdale, New York.  He recieved his Masters in Jewish Studies from Yeshiva University in Manhattan.  A dynamic speaker and talented pedagogue, Raphael teaches advanced students at Reishit Yerushalyim  in Beit Shemesh, Israel.  He also lectures in a local synagogue. 

Vivianne grew up in Lawrence, New York and earned her Masters in social work at the Wurtzweiler school of Social Work.  She currently teaches in a local girls' seminary, counsels women suffering from post- partum depression, and studies cognitive behavioral therapy.
The Willigs and their twin daughters live in Ramat Beit Shemesh. Call them at +011 972 2 999-8274 or email them at vrwilling@netvision.net.il

Mordechai and Shula Wittenstein


Born in Huntsville Alabama, Mordechai Is far from your typical redneck!!! Mordechai graduated from the Talmudic Institution of Long Beach New York, and has been learning and teaching ever since. For the past seven years he has been a Rabbi in Sharei Tevuna, a yeshiva for American post-high school boys.  He is famous for his expertise in wine testing and his enthusiasm and knowledge of space. His telescope almost takes up the whole guest room, (he is happy to move it aside and make room for all Shabbat guests!!)


Born and raised in Cleveland Ohio, Shula went on to study in the Teachers training College in Gateshead England. She holds a clinical degree in social work from The Hebrew University and a Psy.D in Psychology.  Shula has been in private practice for the past seven years. She was extensively involved in treating trauma victims in the north after the second Lebanon War. Shula enjoys home decorating by refurbishing ‘great finds’ to create a unique look. Shula is Rabbi K's sister. Mordechai and Shula live in Jerusalem with their six rambunctious and of course adorable (at most times) children. E-mail them at: shulaw@netvision.net.il


Mottle and Batya Wolfe


Mottle and Batya Wolfe met while in their early twenties in college in Northern California.  After college, they taught English in rural Japan for two years and backpacked extensively throughout Asia.  It was while on their "soul searching" journey to the Far East where they began to discover the deep beauty and wonder of Judaism.  Their journey of self discovery brought them home in 2004 to Jerusalem where they now live with their two Children, Shaul Adam, and Nechama Rachel.

Batya is a full time mom, and Mottle spends his days studying the revealed as well as mystical paths of the Torah.  Mottle is a talented musician, a gifted storyteller, and a dynamic teacher. The Wolfes can be reached at mottle@isralight.org and at +011 972  50 444 2054.


Yehuda and Mindy Zachter

Yehuda and Mindy Zachter currently reside in Ramat Eshkol, Jerusalem, where Yehuda is studying in the Jerusalem Kollel.  The Zachters plan on returning to New York next year after completing their studies in Israel,  where Yehuda begin coursework toward an MBA.  Mindy is a registered nurse who spends most of her time taking care of their really cute son, Yitzchak.   The Zachters can be reached at jzach1@gmail.com or by direct dial from the US at  (718) 360-1911.

Rabbi Moshe Zeldman

Rabbi Moshe Zeldman has a degree from the University of Toronto in Math and Artificial Intelligence. In addition to being a lecturer in the Aish Yeshiva, Discovery Seminar and the Executive Learning Center, he is involved in ongoing codes research and works with leading code researchers worldwide. He received his rabbinical ordination from Aish HaTorah and the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem.

Yehuda and Hennie Zolty

Yehuda, originally from Toronto, Canada, has his Masters in Business Administration from Johns Hopkins University. He studied in Israel for five years before moving to Baltimore where he met Hennie. After their wedding, they returned to Israel where Yehuda has been studying in The Mirrer Yeshiva for three years. Yehuda spent two summers in Kishinev, Moldova (part of the former Soviet Union) where he worked for a Jewish youth organization. Yehuda is a first-class waterskiier and enjoys the outdoors, hockey, stargazing, playing the guitar, Israel, and walking the Green Line daily.
Hennie grew up in Baltimore, MD. She has her Masters in Special Education from Nova Southeastern University and has a passion for teaching. She has taught math and Jewish history in middle schools in Baltimore and has given classes and taught at Beer Miriam and Midreshet Rachel seminaries in Jerusalem. Hennie is a talented artist and has sold a number of paintings, and she gives art lessons to women and girls in Jerusalem.
Yehuda and Hennie have two children, Tehilla and Mayer, who love entertaining their Shabbos guests.  The Zoltys can be reached at +011 072 581-9540 or by dialing their direct US line at  443-320-1861 or by e-mail at yzolty@yahoo.com.