Welcome to the 2023-2024 Sisterhood Speaker Series! Learn more about this year’s speakers below. To register for individual programs, click here. *This series is for Beth El Sisterhood members ONLY.

Brooke Lierman – August 28, 2023

Speaker in-person. Brooke Lierman is the 34th Comptroller of the state of Maryland and the first woman to be independently elected to one of our state’s constitutional offices.  She is an attorney by training, practicing as a civil rights and disability rights lawyer for many years.  Prior to her election as Comptroller, she served for 8 years as a member of the House of Delegates, representing part of Baltimore City.  As our Comptroller, she is focused on championing policies and pursuing partnerships that ignite economic empowerment, equity, and resilience. Brooke and her husband and two school-age children live in Baltimore City.

Matthew Jeffers – October 2, 2023

Speaker in-person. Matthew Jeffers is a proud native of Baltimore. He is best known for playing Dr. Mark Walsh in all five seasons of the #1 show on Netflix, New Amsterdam, as well as for appearing in seasons four and five of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. He has appeared on-stage in critically acclaimed off-Broadway productions, most recently in The Public Theater’s Shakespeare in the Park production of Richard III. He will next star in an upcoming The Walking Dead spinoff series for AMC.

For his first lead role in a feature film, (Peter in Unidentified Objects), Matthew has received international acclaim, including Best Actor in a Leading Role at Outfest LA, Hell’s Half Mile, Tacoma Film Festival, and more. Unidentified Objects is now available to stream on Apple + and Amazon Prime.

Panel of Women in the Forefront of Israeli High-Tech – November 6, 2023

Speakers in-person. Nancy Boguslaw, Deputy Director of the Maryland/Israel Development Center, will moderate a panel of women CEO’s of multi-million dollar Israeli high tech companies.  The panel includes Carly Furman, CEO of Nayax LLC, a leading provider of cashless payment solutions in the North American market and the Western Hemisphere, and Jennifer Roby, Vice President of Finance and CFO of Elta North America, a company working to solve complex and advanced defense homeland security challenges for the U.S. government, including manufacturing radar for the Iron Dome. Join us as these Baltimore-based women share their inspiring stories about how they rose to become leaders in their fields. 

Deborah Weiner – December 4, 2023

Speaker in-person. Deborah Weiner, a Baltimore native, has been working in television news since 1987.  She is co-anchor at WBAL-TV 11 News weeknights at 6 & 11 p.m. and produces reports for the 11 News I-Team.  Deborah has won numerous Emmy awards for in-depth reporting and writing along with many other industry accolades.  Among her greatest honor is the prestigious Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Award, which was awarded for her investigation of Baltimore’s juvenile justice system.

Arthur Smith – January 8, 2024

Virtual speaker. Arthur Smith is a Canadian television producer who is best known for the multiple Emmy nominated American Ninja Warrior and Fox’s longest running competition show Hell’s Kitchen.  He was named Producer of the Year 2020 by Broadcasting & Cable.  He previously worked for CBS Sports, Dick Clark Productions, MCA Television Group and Fox Sports Net.  He has won multiple television awards including Critic’s Choice Real TV, a Realscreen Award and multiple Reality Television Awards.  His shows have been nominated for Daytime Emmys, Nickelodeon Kid’s Choice Awards, Producer Guild Awards and People’s Choice Awards.  In addition to his television accomplishments, Arthur just released a new book, Reach:  Hard Lessons and Learned Truths from a Lifetime in Television.

Naomi Ragen – February 5, 2024

Virtual speaker. Naomi Ragen is an American-born novelist, playwright and journalist who has lived in Israel since 1971. Naomi has written for the Jerusalem Post and other publications in Israel and abroad, about Israel and Jewish issues. Her first book, Jephte’s Daugh­ter, was list­ed among the one-hun­dred most impor­tant Jew­ish books of all time. Her best­selling nov­els include SotahThe CovenantThe Sis­ters Weiss, and Dev­il in JerusalemThe Enemy Beside Me is her 14th novel.  An Orthodox woman, feminist and iconoclast, Naomi is a tireless advocate for women’s rights in Israel, waging a relentless campaign against domestic abuse and bias in rabbinical courts, as well as a successful Supreme Court case against gender segregation on Israeli buses. 

Rebecca Hoffberger in conversation with Rabbi Saroken – March 4, 2024

Rabbi in-person, Rebecca may or may not be in-person. Join Rebecca Hoffberger, founder and former director of the American Visionary Arts Museum, and our very own Rabbi Saroken in a diverse conversation as they explore various topics – Jewish Views of Afterlife, Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People, and The Role of Humor in Jewish Culture.

Iris Krasnow – April 1, 2024 (Afternoon Tea)

Speaker in-person. Iris Krasnow is the Senior Editor of AARP’s publication “The Ethel”, for women “who weren’t born yesterday”, she is an American author, journalism professor, and keynote speaker who specializes in relationships and personal growth. Iris is the author of many books including the New York Times bestseller Surrendering to Marriage, Surrendering to Yourself, I Am My Mother’s Daughter, The Secret Lives of Wives, and Sex After…Women Share How Intimacy Changes As Life Changes. Her latest book is Camp Girls: Fireside Lessons on Friendship, Courage, and Loyalty (2020). Iris’s writing has been featured in many national publications and she has been a guest on numerous national television and radio programs including Good Morning America and Today.

Surprise Celebrity Speaker – May 20, 2024

Speaker in-person. The speaker slated for our Closing Meeting is a well-known personality with an impressive resume.  Due to many factors, we are unable to announce the identity of this speaker.  This will be a not-to-be-missed event.

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