An engaging, vibrant, and inclusive synagogue
Josh Bender, Executive Director
Josh has been involved in Jewish communal leadership for almost 20 years working in JCC’s, Jewish Camping, Synagogues, and Jewish Day Schools. Josh comes to us from Krieger Schechter Day School where he served as the Head of the Lower School for three years. Prior to that, Josh served as Director of Education for seven years at Adas Israel Congregation in Washington, DC. He holds a Master’s Degree in Jewish Education from Baltimore Hebrew University and is a graduate of the Day School Leadership Training Institute at the Jewish Theological Seminary. In addition to serving in various leadership roles within the Jewish community, Josh plays the guitar and has been doing song leading for many years in schools, camps, and synagogues. Josh is married to Julie and has three sons, Noah, Jacob, and Ethan, 10, 8, and 2 respectively.
Ailene Sher, Director of Development
Ailene was born in South Africa and spent her childhood in both Johannesburg and Cape Town. She attended Jewish Day Schools where she developed her passion for Judaism and Israel. She earned a BA in Education and taught in the King David Jewish Day School in Johannesburg. She and her husband and 2 children emigrated to New Zealand where she had a job offer to start a Jewish Day School in Wellington. Nine years later, when her children were in High School she felt it necessary to once again emigrate, to be with family who were in the US, and to have her children in a Jewish Day School and be in a large Jewish community. They arrived in Baltimore in 1995. Ailene earned a Master’s in Jewish Education with honors from the Baltimore Hebrew University. She joined Beth El in 1995 and she is now our Director of Development. She is the proud grandmother of two granddaughters.
Eyal Bor, Ph.D., Director of Education & Director of The Rabbi Mark G. Loeb Center for Life Long Learning
Dr. Bor received a B.A. degree in Music in 1983 from the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. He went on to earn a Master’s degree in Educational Administration from the American Jewish University, Los Angeles in 1986, and earned a Ph.D. in Jewish Studies from Baltimore Hebrew University in 1996. He continued to expand his professional credentials studying Day School Leadership Training Program at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York City. He joined Beth El in 1991 and he is now our Director of the Rabbi Mark G. Loeb Center for Life Long Learning and the Director of Beth El Schools. He oversees all the educational programs at Beth El Congregation. He has introduced to Beth El, programs for children with special needs, many of whom have become B’nai Mitzvah. He is married to Dr. Hana Bor, who is a Peggy Meyerhoff Pearlstone Professor and Program Director for Leadership in Jewish Education & Communal Service graduate programs at Towson University. They have four children.
Ben Kreshtool, Ritual Director
Baltimore native Ben Kreshtool joined Beth El as Ritual Director in May of 2014. He attended Krieger Schechter Day School and the Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School and went on to study history and Judaic studies at UMBC. Always involved in synagogue life, he developed an early love for Torah and prayer, and was mentored by various clergy over the years. As a result, he has a broad background in the many traditions and laws of Jewish prayer and sacred readings, including the Torah, Haftarah and all 5 Megillot. He has a passion for Jewish teaching and learning and is always happy to share it with others.
Randy Arndts, Controller
Randy graduated from Lynchburg College with a BS degree in Accounting. He worked as an accountant in the real estate industry for the first 10 years after graduation. Randy joined Beth El in 1991 and is our Controller. He resides in Westminster with his wife and 2 sons.
Staff Contact Information
Mandy Barish, Director of Pauline Mash School for Early Childhood Education: [email protected]
Sandi Block, Administrative Assistant to the Executive Director: [email protected]
Diane Cole, Administrative Assistant: [email protected]
Fran Davis, School Assistant Administrator: [email protected]
Lori Downing, Event Coordinator: [email protected]
Amy Goldberg, Assistant Pricipal: [email protected]
Ellen Marks, Administrator for The Rabbi Mark G. Loeb Center for Life Long Learning & Administrator for the B'nai Mitzvah Program: [email protected]
Josh Powell, Bookkeeper: [email protected]
Michael Ray, Building Manager: [email protected]
Sarah Rohan, Memorial Park Assistant: [email protected]
Rachel Siegal, Director of the Alvin and Lois Lapidus Center for Healing and Spirituality: [email protected]
Lisa Silverstein, Assistant to the Director of Development: [email protected]
Ilene Vogelstein, Director of Beth El @ Federal Hill : [email protected]
Officers of the Board
Denise Franz, President
Dr. Edward Mishner, First Vice President
Bruce Friedman, Second Vice President
Jennifer Millman, Secretary
Edward Goldmeier, Treasurer
Hal Hackerman, Comptroller