CO-DIRECTOR OF OU-JLIC AT JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
Rabbi Cantor attended Yeshivat Har Etzion in Alon, Shevut, Israel for two years, graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a degree in philosophy and received semicha from Rabbi Chaim Ozer Chait. Rabbi Cantor taught gemara at the Yeshiva of Virginia boys’ high school and held rabbinic internships at the Riverdale Jewish Center and Keneseth Beth Israel. He was also the programs director and head counselor for Baron Hirsch Camp Darom.
CO-DIRECTOR OF OU-JLIC AT JOHNS HOPKINS UNIVERSITY
Leora attended Sha’alvim for Women in Jerusalem and graduated from Yeshiva University with a degree in Judaic Studies. Leora also earned a bachelor’s in the science of nursing from Bon Secours Memorial College of Nursing and began her nursing career in cardiology.
RABBI MENACHEM SCHRADER
FOUNDING DIRECTOR, OU-JLIC
Rabbi Menachem Schrader studied at Yeshivat Har Etzion and Yeshiva University. He has a BA in Philosophy from YU, an MA in History from NYU, and received his Smicha from Yeshiva University’s Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. He was on the Torah studies faculty of Yeshivat Hamivtar, teaching Talmud, Bible, and Halachah. He was the director of the Aliza Flatow program at Nishmat. In the year 2000 he founded the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus of the Orthodox Union.
RABBANIT SHANI TARAGIN
RA”M, TANACH COORDINATOR, MASHGICHA RUCHANIT, TVA
EDUCATIONAL DIRECTOR, MIZRACHI
Rabbanit Shani Taragin completed a B.A. and M.A. in Tanach and Talmud at Bar-Ilan University. She is currently pursuing her Ph.D in Tanach. She is the educational director of Matan Eshkolot – Tanakh teachers’ education program and of the Morot l’Halacha program in Matan Renana. She teaches collegiates and adults at MaTaN, Migdal Oz, Sha'alvim for Women, Lander's College, and the Womens' Beit Midrash in Efrat and Ramat Shilo. Shani is a graduate of Nishmat’s Keren Ariel Program for certification as a halachic advisor in issues of family purity law.
RABBI DR. YEHUDA SEIF
ROSH YESHIVA & EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, TVA
Rabbi Seif studied at Yeshivat Har Etzion and received his ordination from Rav Zalman Nechemiah Goldberg. He received his BA from Columbia College, his MA in Religion and Education from Columbia's Teacher's College, and Israeli Teacher Certification from Herzog College. He was a fellow at the Center for Jewish Law and Contemporary Civilization at the Cardozo School of Law, and he completed his PhD in Religious Studies at University of Pennsylvania. He served as a Senior Program Officer at the Tikvah Fund. He served as the Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus educator at the University of Pennsylvania from 2002-2006.
Rav Doron Perez
DIRECTOR, WORLD MIZRACHI
Rav Doron Perez is the newly elected Director of the World Mizrachi Movement. He previously served the South African Jewish community for 15 years as the Rabbi of the Mizrachi Movement, Senior Rabbi of the Mizrachi Shul and the Head of Yeshiva College schools. Rav Perez is the author of the book “Leading the Way”.
Avigayil made aliyah from Cleveland, Ohio after studying for a year in Midreshet Nishmat. Following her national service at Mechon Hamikdash, she completed her B.A. from Bar Ilan University in Tanach and Political Science. She has worked at Midreshet Lindenbaum and Midreshet Nishmat, as well as many summers in Camp Stone and Mach Hach Ba'aretz. She is a Chatzramit in Midreshet Torah V'avodah and will be teaching Gemara B'kiyut as well as Tanach classes this summer.
Yoni was born and raised in Boston. After graduating Maimonides school, he made Aliya and did Hesder in Yeshivat Har Etzion. He has a B.Ed. from Herzog College, minoring in Jewish philosophy and rabbininc literature. He loves to learn and teach, play violin, hike, and discuss Descartes over Turkish coffee (with ground cardamom).
Yifat originally hails from Teaneck, New Jersey. After spending a year and a half learning at Midreshet Harova, Yifat pursued a degree in Nutrition and Dietetics at Queens College. Yifat moved to Israel two years ago to study at Matan’s Bellows Eshkolot Educators program, during which time she fulfilled her dream of making Israel her home by making Aliyah. She continued her studies this past year learning at Lapidot, a joint program between Mizrachi and Matan. This will be Yifat’s third summer with OU-JLIC’s Summer in Jerusalem. Feel free to come over and introduce yourself because Yifat is always down for a good schmooze or a new pancake recipe :)
RABBI SHAUL FELDMAN
Founder, TVA; Director, Bnei Akiva of the United States and Canada
Rabbi Shaul Feldman is the Executive Director of Bnei Akiva of the US and Canada and just recently served as the campaign manager for the Religious Zionist Party in the World Zionist Congress elections. He received smicha from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and a law degree from Bar Ilan Law School. Today, Rabbi Feldman is a highly admired Rav both in Israel and North America and mixes a keen mind with humor and a down to earth nature. After serving as a paratrooper in the IDF, he went on to teach in the Kerem B’Yavneh overseas program, Stern College and Torah Mi’Zion Kollel.
Rav Hillel Van-Leeuwen
EDUCATIONAL DIRECTOR, WORLD MIZRACHI
Born in Chicago and raised in Israel, Rav Hillel spent 3 years as a shaliach in Toronto, Canada, where he taught at CHAT while being involved in several educational projects and summer camps. For the past 11 years, Rav Hillel served as the Head of the English-speaking Program at Midreshet Yeud. He joined World Mizrachi as Educational Director in the summer of 2015.