Biographies of Gladstein Leadership and Fellows

Gladstein Leadership

Ned Gladstein is a member of the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee at The Jewish Theological Seminary, where he serves as chairman of the Committee on Institutional Partnerships; he is past-chairman of the Rabbinical School Board of Overseers.

Mr. Gladstein is vice president of Masorti Olami, the World Council of Conservative/Masorti Synagogues; a member of the Board of Governors of Jerusalem's Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies; past-president of Congregation Agudath Israel of West Essex in Caldwell, New Jersey; and a former member of the Board of Trustees of MetroWest Federation of the United Jewish Appeal. He is the third-generation owner of Sunrise ShopRite, a family business operating supermarkets and wine and spirits shops in West Caldwell, Parsippany, and Westfield, New Jersey. He also serves as an officer and member of the board of directors of Wakefern Food Corporation, the wholesale and distribution cooperative serving more than 200 ShopRite Supermarkets throughout the Northeastern United States. Mr. Gladstein has served on the boards of several civic and nonprofit organizations, and on the boards of various commercial and trade groups.

Mr. Gladstein lives in North Caldwell, New Jersey, with his wife Jane. Together they have raised three beautiful daughters: Hannah, Dara, and Liza. Jane and Ned Gladstein are the founders of the Gladstein Fellowship in Entrepreneurial Leadership at JTS.

Rabbi Mauricio Balter was born in Uruguay in 1957. He grew up in a Zionist home in Argentina, and, as a teenager, he was active in the Zionist movement in Latin America. Rabbi Balter earned BAs in Education and Psychology, an additional degree in Jewish Studies, an MA from the University of Haifa in Jewish Thought, and rabbinic ordination from the Seminario Rabínico Latinoamericano in 1991.

Rabbi Balter immigrated to Israel with his wife, Vila, and their two daughters, Shani and Maia, in July 1995. He served as the rabbi of the Masorti Community of the Krayot until February 2010 and, beginning in June 2010, has served as the rabbi of Congregation Eshel Avraham in Be'er Sheva. His professional life is characterized by Jewish and Zionist educational activities and community service at all levels, resulting in his leadership activities in the Masorti Movement as well as his vision of tikkun 'olam.

Since his aliyah in 1995 until early 2010, Rabbi Balter served as the rabbi of the Masorti Synagogue in the Krayot. Under his tenure, the community grew from 20 to 300 families. He also served as a rabbi for many residents in the region and was recognized by the mayors and municipal leaders. The community also ran a wide variety of projects, including 14 social justice projects. He also served as the rabbi of seven TALI schools in the Krayot, and initiated and ran the project "Masorti Aliyah," encouraging 500 Jewish families to move from South America to Kiryat Bialik and organizing their moves.

Rabbi Balter has served as a vice-chairman of the presidency of the Council of the World Zionist Organization and as the secretary of the International Executive Committee of the Rabbinical Assembly in New York. He is a member of the International Masorti Committee. Rabbi Balter founded and directs the "Jethro" project of the Rabbinical Assembly in Israel for the training of young rabbis and doing community work. He serves today as vice-chairman of the Conservative Movement in Israel and as the chairman of the Personnel and Organizing Committees, as well as the Siddur and the Mahzor Committees. He is the president of the Rabbinical Assembly in Israel, and member of the Administrative Committee and the Executive Council of the International Rabbinical Assembly.

Rabbi Michael Goldman completed his bachelor's degree at Reed College (1989), where he majored in Russian. His first jobs after college took him out of the bell jar of Russian poetry and into contact with real people at doctors' offices, where he worked as a Russian interpreter; on the decks of Soviet fish-processing ships in the Bering sea, again as an interpreter; and in the homes of new Jewish immigrants, while he was a social worker for Portland, Oregon's Jewish Family and Child Service.

During rabbinical school, Michael pursued training as a pastoral counselor, working with AIDS and Huntington's patients (Terence Cardinal Cook Health Care Center in New York) and with elderly dementia patients (Hebrew Home for the Aged in Riverdale). He also applied his language skills to serve a marginal Jewish community through Camp Ramah Yachad in the Ukraine and a program in Eastern European community support at the American Jewish World Service.

Rabbi Goldman made B'nai Jeshurun on the Upper West Side of Manhattan his Jewish institutional home.

Rabbi Barry Dov Katz has served as rabbi of the Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale in Bronx, New York, for the past 13 years, and has worked with congregation members and staff to create a vibrant urban synagogue. He enjoys helping to develop the congregation as a Teaching Congregation to assist in training rabbinic interns from The Jewish Theological Seminary. Before coming to the Bronx, he served for seven years as the spiritual leader of an emerging congregation, Congregation Eitz Chaim, in Monroe, New York, and, before that, as student rabbi at Neve Hanna, a home for youngsters from dysfunctional families in Kiryat Gat, Israel.

He received ordination and a master's degree in Rabbinics from JTS and a degree in Psychology / Hebrew Literature from the University of Pennsylvania. Rabbi Katz loves to teach children and adults of all ages in formal (shul, school, university) and informal (camp and youth group) educational settings. He teaches a course in Communications (formerly known as Homiletics) to third-year rabbinical students at JTS.

In his private life, he enjoys practicing Hebrew calligraphy, reading current fiction, and spending time with his wife and three children.

Rabbi Jonathan Lipnick is coordinator of Field Education at The Rabbinical School of The Jewish Theological Seminary and the rabbi-in-residence for the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education. He currently serves as the project director of the Gladstein Fellowship.

Rabbi Gordon Tucker is the senior rabbi of Temple Israel Center in White Plains, New York, where he has served since August 1994. He is also adjunct assistant professor of Jewish Philosophy at The Jewish Theological Seminary. Rabbi Tucker has an AB from Harvard University and a PhD from Princeton University, and received his rabbinic ordination from JTS.

He has taught at JTS since 1976, and from 1979 to 1980, served as a White House Fellow in the administration of President Jimmy Carter. From 1984 to 1992, Rabbi Tucker was the dean of The Rabbinical School. He has published many articles on Jewish philosophy and law, and on Jewish affairs. He is the translator and editor of Heavenly Torah, a three-volume work by Abraham Joshua Heschel (Continuum, January 2005). Rabbi Tucker is married to Amy E. Cohn, and has three children—Ethan (married to Ariela Migdal), Becky, and Micah—and three grandchildren

Cantor Elizabeth Stevens

Cantor Elizabeth Stevens joined the staff of Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale (CSAIR) in 2009. Cantor Stevens is involved in all aspects of congregational life, working with Rabbi Barry Dov Katz to create services that are inclusive and engaging, and full of enthusiastic singing.

Before coming to CSAIR she served as cantor of The Society for the Advancement of Judaism (SAJ) from 2000–2009. In addition to leading services on Shabbat and holidays Cantor Stevens taught a range of subjects both in the Hebrew School and to adults, including prayer, Hebrew language and Torah chant. She co-created the "B'nai Mitzvah Experience," a two-year program for families of b'nai mitzvah students that included educational programming and social events.

Cantor Stevens graduated from the H. L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish Music of The Jewish Theological Seminary in 2000 with a master's of Sacred Music and diploma of Hazzan. While in school, she earned several awards in areas such as composition, pulpit performance, and Judaic excellence. She served as student cantor at Congregation Habonim, at the SAJ, and at Town and Village Synagogue, all in New York City. She also performed regularly with Kolot (Voices), a women's a cappella trio specializing in a variety of Jewish music. Kolot provided the background music for the documentary film Women of the Wall, which Cantor Stevens also narrated.

Cantor Stevens is a graduate of Binghamton University (S.U.N.Y.) where she began formal voice training and graduated in 1995 with a BA in Judaic Studies. Raised in New York City, she was deeply involved in a diverse range of Jewish communities with a broad spectrum of practices and beliefs. A life long member of SAJ, she attended Ramaz, a Modern Orthodox yeshiva, and Camp Ramah, a Conservative summer camp.

For several years, Cantor Stevens has been a soloist for and member of the Zamir Chorale, conducted by Matthew Lazar, which has given her the opportunity to sing a wide range of great Jewish music on the great stages of New York and Israel. She has participated in the North American Jewish Choral Festival every summer since 1998.

Gladstein Fellows

Aderet Drucker is in her fifth and final year of rabbinical school at The Jewish Theological Seminary and is a Gladstein Fellow. During her year of study in Israel, Aderet served as a rabbinic intern to Rabbi Mauricio Balter and his Masorti community in northern Israel. The Masorti Foundation featured Aderet and her experiences interning for Rabbi Mauricio Balter in the Masorti Foundation's July 2010 newsletter. While living in Jerusalem, Aderet was also a participant of the Shalom Hartman Rabbinical Students Seminar, a yearlong seminar bringing together interdenominational rabbinical students from six different North American rabbinical schools. She is a firm believer in the importance of strengthening relationships within the Jewish community as well as strengthening interfaith relationships. This past summer, Aderet was one of sixteen Jewish and Muslim participants selected to attend the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College's Retreat for Emerging Jewish and Muslim Religious Leaders in Connecticut.

Aderet has completed training in community organizing and is putting those valuable skills to use as she currently leads an effective Listening Campaign at Temple Israel Center. She completed a 400-hour unit in hospital chaplaincy at Bellevue Hospital Center in Manhattan and she was selected to participate in the 2010–2011 cohort of the Rabbis Without Borders Student Fellowship through the National Center for Learning and Leadership (CLAL). Aderet is honored to be the current visiting rabbi at Congregation Shomrei Torah in Tallahassee, Florida for a second year. She also serves as the Gladstein Fellow and rabbinic intern to Temple Israel Center of White Plains, where she is mentored by Rabbi Gordon Tucker. Aderet is happily married to her husband and partner in life, Brett Drucker.

Adam Baldachin is currently a fourth year rabbinical student at JTS. As a Gladstein Fellow, Adam is the rabbinic intern at Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale and serves as rabbi at Beth Shalom of Lake Norman. Adam earned his bachelor’s degree at the Joint Program in 2006 where he studied Talmud at JTS and History at Columbia University. After graduating, Adam took two years to teach at Solomon Schechter Day School of Essex and Union and travel to Uganda where he worked with the Abayudaya, an indigenous Jewish community in Mbale. Adam, and his wife Maital Friedman, are the proud parents of their son, Shalev Yair. Maital is from White Plains, NY, earned her Bachelor’s degree from Princeton University, and is pursuing her master’s degree at New York University in Public Administration and Judaic Studies. She is also a Wexner Fellow/Davison Scholar. She spent last year in Israel as a Dorot Fellow where she created a documentary on women's head covering.

Jordan Hersh is the third-year Gladstein Fellow who recently returned from a year of living and studying in Jerusalem at Machon Schechter. During this year in Israel, he also interned with Rabbi Mauricio Balter at Kehillat Eshel Avraham in Be'er Sheva, studied Zohar at the Conservative Yeshiva and participated in the Shalom Hartman Rabbinical Students Seminar, which brings together students from several American Rabbinical Schools to study a broad range of topics including Zohar, Israeli Culture, and spiritual development.

Currently, Jordan is serving as the KOACH Rabbinic Intern at the Bronfman Center for Student Jewish Life at NYU, is a fellow of the Rabbis Without Borders Student Fellowship through CLAL and is a board member of the Rabbinical School Student Organization. In addition to his rabbinical studies, Jordan is also pursuing a Masters Degree through the Bible Department at JTS. Music is one of his true passions, and he loves expressing this creative side of himself with his wife Shulie, who is a cantorial student at the Academy for Jewish Religion.

Roni Tabick is beginning his second year of rabbinical studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He grew up in London before studying for a masters in Mathematics and Philosophy at Brasenose College, Oxford. Roni then taught religious studies and philosophy at Manchester Grammar School while his wife, Shoshana worked as a doctor in an emergency room. Together, they spent a year in Israel, where Roni studied at the Conservative Yeshiva, before moving to New York in August 2010. In January 2011, Roni became the newest Gladstein Fellow.

Roni's interests of study include Talmud, Zohar and kabbala, and Jewish mythology. His great love is th Leviathan and other mythological beasts of the Bible. After his rabbinic studies, Roni hopes to return to the UK to work in the Masorti community. 


Rami Schwartzer is a first-year rabbinical student at the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) in New York City. He is a graduate of List College, where he received a B.A. in philosophy from Columbia University and a B.A. in Talmud & Rabbinics from JTS in December 2010. In addition to his time spent at List, Rami also spent six months learning at both the Conservative Yeshiva and Hadassah Academic College in Jerusalem.

As the culmination of his studies in List College and a year of advanced research, Rami wrote his senior honors thesis entitled Placing Autism in Early Rabbinic Law, which explores core philosophical questions about the nature of autism and how the Jewish legal system should most properly respond to them.

Rami now works as the Special Projects Coordinator for the National Ramah Commission, housed at JTS. He formerly served as the Youth Director of the Pelham Jewish Center in Westchester County, NY; helped pioneer the unique educational goals of Tribeca Hebrew in lower Manhattan; and spends his summers as a member of the senior staff at Camp Ramah in New England.  Rami lives in Manhattan's Upper West Side with his wife Adina Rosen, a Community Liaison Worker in the Bellevue Hospital psychiatric units.

Gladstein Alumni

Rabbi Michael Ragozin is the rabbi of Congregation Sha'are Shalom in Leesburg, Virginia. Rabbi Ragozin enjoys teaching, fatherhood, and the outdoors, and is an active participant in Loudoun Interfaith BRIDGES, which brings together communities of different faiths to collectively address common challenges and build bridges of understanding and respect. He was the unofficial Most Valuable Player of the 2010 David Shapiro backyard basketball league.

Prior to becoming a rabbi, Rabbi Ragozin taught high school, implemented customer relationship management (CRM) software, and raised money for the Seattle Jewish Film Festival.

Rabbi Jeremy Gerber has been the rabbi of Ohev Shalom since July of 2009. He was ordained at The Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City. His academic career at JTS began in the List College Joint Program with Columbia University, where he earned bachelors degrees in Talmud and Rabbinics at JTS and Anthropology at Columbia. He also holds a masters in Jewish Education. While at The Rabbinical School, Rabbi Gerber was also a Gladstein Fellow in Entrepreneurial Rabbinics, and as such served as the rabbi of Beth Shalom of Lake Norman, North Carolina, and the rabbinic intern at Congregation Agudath Israel in Caldwell, New Jersey.

In addition to serving as the rabbi of Ohev Shalom, Rabbi Gerber is also the coordinator of the Swarthmore-Wallingford Interfaith Ministerium (SWIM) and an associate chaplain at Widener University.

Rabbi Gerber grew up in Stockholm, Sweden, where his father is the cantor in the Great Synagogue of Stockholm. His wife, Rebecca, hails from Brooklyn, New York, and is a City Planner working in Lansdowne, PA.

Rabbi Eytan Hammerman is Rabbi of Temple Beth Shalom in Mahopac, New York, a lakeside community approximately one north of New York City. Major elements of Eytan's work can be credited to the entrepreneurial training he received as a Gladstein Fellow during his years at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Among the regular programming at his congregation are bi-weekly Coffee and Conversation programs in local coffee shops and a Cooking Class for the teen members of the congregation. Before beginning his professional studies for the Rabbinate at JTS, Eytan served as Director of the Jewish Youth Philanthropy Institute in Washington D.C., an innovate community service and tzedakah (charity) organization for teenagers. With his wife Rebecca, he founded a Masorti (Conservative) synagogue in Madrid, Spain - Congregacion Bet El - and continues to serve on the Board of the international Masorti Movement. A "young leader" of the Conservative Movement, Rabbi Hammerman has been appointed to numerous committees and delegations representing Conservative Jewry in North America, Israel and overseas. He is the proud father of Ary, Rena and Ilana.

Rabbi Corey Helfand serves as the rabbi for Peninsula Sinai Congregation in Foster City, California. He received his rabbinic ordination in May 2011 from The Jewish Theological Seminary of America along with a Masters in Talmud and Jewish Law and a certificate in pastoral care. As a Gladstein Fellow in Entrepreneurial Rabbinics, Rabbi Helfand served as the rabbinic intern at the Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel in Riverdale under the mentorship of Rabbi Barry Dov Katz and as the rabbi of Beth Shalom of Lake Norman in Davidson, North Carolina. Rabbi Helfand graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a BA in Jewish and Islamic Studies and in Political Science. He completed two 400-hour units of Clinical Pastoral Education, one at the Zicklin Hospice Center through the Center for Pastoral Education at JTS and one unit at Bellevue Hospital. He served as the rabbinic intern for the Masorti Community in Kiryat Bialik outside Haifa under the mentorship of Rabbi Mauricio Balter. Rabbi Helfand is married to Jenny Ackerman, who completed her MPH at Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem and her MSW at Hunter College. Rabbi Helfand and Jenny are proud parents of Eden Leora.

 See FAQs about the program

View a timeline for the Gladstein Fellowship