Avram Mandell '01 Named as 2016 RHSOE Alumni-in-Residence Educator

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

The RHSOE Alumni-in-Residence Program brings an outstanding alumna/us to the Los Angeles campus for three days of programming every other fall. The alumna/us is selected by RHSOE alumni leadership for outstanding achievement as a Jewish educator. He or she teaches in several RHSOE classes as well as in special seminars. Students also have a chance to meet with the them individually to discuss issues related to professional life as a Jewish educator. The Alumni-in-Residence Program is sponsored by the RHSOE Alumni Association.

The RHSOE Alumni Association is pleased to announce that this year’s Alum-in-Residence is Avram Mandell, RHSOE 2001. Avram aspires to create high impact immersive programs that engage young adults in Jewish learning in a fun and relevant way, and inspire them to incorporate Jewish values in their everyday lives. Today Avram is the Executive Director and Founder of Tzedek America, a cross-denominational gap year program that motivates Jewish young adults to integrate Jewish identity, social justice, and civic participation through communal living and service in the United States. Tzedek America guides participants, ages 17-20, in asking and answering vital questions about their Jewish identities.

Avram served as Director of Education at two major Reform congregations, most recently Leo Baeck Temple, a 600-family congregation in Los Angeles, California from 2004-2014. Prior to joining Leo Baeck, he spent three years as Education Director at Temple Beth El, a 1,200-family synagogue in San Antonio, Texas.

Avram also brings youth group and camp experience, and once served as Assistant Director of the Union of Reform Judaism Camp Harlam and the regional advisor to the Pennsylvania High School Youth Group, NFTY-PAR.

For more information about Avram, check out his alumni profile here: http://huc.edu/news/2015/10/19/rhsoe-alumni-profile-avram-mandell

**Tzedek America is a Jewish travel and social justice internship gap year program based in Los Angeles. The program teaches leadership, communication and confidence-building skills — lifelong learning tools that will help the participants build a successful and purposeful life while working to make a better world. Jewish content is designed to give Tzedek America Fellows the opportunity to explore and redefine their Jewish identity, both as individuals and as an American citizens. Tzedek America seeks to engage with Jewish young adults who represent the diversity of the Jewish community, including Jews of all religious backgrounds, sexual orientations, gender identities, national origins, racial and ethnic backgrounds, abilities and socioeconomic status.

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding. www.huc.edu