Kulanu Credits: The 2013 Volunteer Community

Ken Klein (Harriet Bograd’s husband) playing
with young friends in the Abayudaya Village of Namutumba in Uganda
Photo by Beverly Koster

It’s always such a pleasure to see the support come in at the end of the year, with many gifts accompanied by heart-warming notes that remind us why we do this work.  Of course, it’s not just the donors who make things happen here at Kulanu – in our grassroots organization, many of our projects are carried out by volunteers whose dedication to global Jewry is an inspiration to me. These volunteers are the core of Kulanu’s success. Not to mention all the folks who travel far and wide to spend time with isolated Jewish communities, either as visitors who build relationships across borders, or as volunteers who contribute their skills and energy in addition to helping strengthen our connections with each other.

Meet the Kulanu community members who made 2013 such a dynamic and rewarding year…

(Imagine the names below scrolling over a large movie screen – what a production!)

Kulanu Board Members and Officers:

Harriet Bograd, President

Judith Manelis, Vice President

Barbara Vinick, Secretary

Sandy Leeder, Treasurer

Jack Zeller, President Emeritus

Rabbi Stephen Leon

Daneel Schaechter

Andria Spindel

Marcy Stein

Rabbi Bonita Sussman

Aron and Karen Primack, Honorary Board Members

Peter Persoff (board member and treasurer in 2013, now volunteer engineering consultant to Kulanu)

Regional Coordinators:

Brazil: Regina Igel, Dione Pereira, Robert Feron

Cameroon: Rabbis Bonita and Gerald Sussman

China: Jim Michaelson

Ecuador: Daneel Schaechter

El Salvador: Rabbi Aaron Rehberg

Ethiopia: Lucy Steinitz, Sam Taddesse and Yohannes Zeleke

Ghana: Harriet Bograd

Guatemala: Rabbi Elyse Goldstein

India: Romiel Daniel, Navras Jaat Aafreedi

Kenya: Ari Witkin

Latin America: Daneel Schaechter

Abuja, Nigeria: Shai Afsai

Poland: Rabbi Haim Beliak

Puerto Rico: Rabbi Lawrence Goldstein

Suriname: Jacob Steinberg

Tutsi: Rabbi David Kuperman

Uganda: Laura Wetzler, Mordy and Miriam Feinberg

Zimbabwe: Sandy Leeder

Liaison to Saudades: Rufina Mausenbaum


Individuals who make presentations about Kulanu and world Jewry in their home communities and elsewhere –

Rabbi Barbara Aiello

Joyce Alpiner

Jeanne Bodin

Serge Etele

Dolores Goldfinger

Modreck Maeresera

Judy Manelis

Yoash Mayende

Aaron Kintu Moses

Shoshannah Nambi

Rabbi Bonita Sussman

Rabbi Gerald Sussman

Barbara Vinick

David Wise

Gil and Lil Zinn

Magazine Editors:

Judy Manelis, Editor

Serge Etele, Layout and Photography Editor

Programming and Development Coordinator:

Katie Rosenthal (part time)

Justina Shaw (part time)

Bookeeping and Database Coordinator:   

Jerry Krasny (part time)

Social Networking Volunteers: 

Wathira Nganga

Ivan Porto

Community Member-Leaders:

There are many dedicated individuals in remote places who help encourage Judaism in their own communities, despite the challenges of being far from other Jewish communities and resources.

Here are just a few of the people we had the pleasure of working with this past year, who serve their respective communities as devoted members and leaders, and as liaisons to Kulanu and Jews everywhere:

Cameroon: Serge Etele

Ethiopia: Demeke Engina

Ghana: Alex Armah, Ben Baidoo, Akiva Kena

Guatemala: Jeannette Orantes

India: Sadok Yacobi

Nicaragua: Kurt Preiss

Nigeria: Remy Ilona

Poland:  Joanne Auron-Gorska

Uganda: Rabbi Gershom Sizomu, Seth Jonadav, Aaron Kintu Moses, Naume Sabano, Samson Shadrack, Samson Wamani, Avram Mukiibi, Nora Nantabo

Zimbabwe: Modreck Maeresera, Rabson Wuriga

Kulanu volunteer Irwin Berg at dinner with friends at
the Harare Lemba Synagogue and Guest House in Zimbabwe
Photo by Elaine Berg

Local Volunteers:

All the volunteers who arrange for Kulanu-related speaking events or educational programs,

fundraise with family and friends, spread the word on Facebook or blogs —

there are so many that we cannot list them all, but here are a few from the past year:

Harriet Bograd and Kenneth Klein

Elaine and Irvin Berg

Dr. Michael Costello

Mickey and Mordy Feinberg

Dr Elizabeth Feldman

Joanie Levine

Howard Metzenberg

David Michaelson

Jim Michaelson

Karen and Aron Primack

Jeanne and Murray Bodin

Dr. Ronald Plotka

Edward Rensin

Patti Scheinman

Maya Sokolsky

Jocelyn Spencer

Joshua Uhlfelder

Barbara Vinick

Community Visitors and Volunteers:

All the adventurous people who have visited or volunteered in Kulanu communities – we may miss many guests and helpers, but these are some who came through Kulanu –

Harriet Bograd and Kenneth Klein

Nathan Devir

Kimberly Dueñas

Rabbi Elyse Goldstein

Lorna Hopf

Lisa Kassow

Beverly Koster

Sandy Leeder

Joanie Levine and Yehudah Winter

Judy Manelis

Rabbi Aaron Rehberg

Daneel Schaechter

Patti Scheinman

Rabbis Bonita and Gerry Sussman

Shep Wahnon

Laura Wetzler


Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder

Shai Afsai

Severyn Ashkenazy

Elaine Berg

Harriet Bograd

Kimberly Dueñas

Kimberly Dyer

Vanessa Dylyn

Serge Etele

Mordecai Feinberg

Rabbi Elyse Goldstein

Andrzej Gorska


Kenneth Klein

Beverly Koster

Sandy Leeder

Lorne Mallin

Judy Manelis

Yoash Mayende

William F.S. Miles

Aaron Kintu Moses

Naser Nama

Aaron Primack

Domenico Pulice

Rabbi Aaron Rehberg

Daneel Schaechter

Andria Spindel

Rabbi Bonita Sussman

Ike Swetlitz

Viviane Topp

Laura Wetzler

Rabson Wuriga

Jack Zeller


~ Individuals who wrote articles in the 2013 issues of KulanuNews ~

Shai Afsai

Rabbi Haim Dov Beliak

Elaine Berg

Irwin Berg

Harriet Bograd

Kimberly Dueñas

Rabbi Elyse Goldstein

Sandy Leeder

Modreck Zvakavapano Maeresera

Judy Manelis

Margo Nash

Karen Primack

Daneel Schaechter

Rabbis, Cantors, Teachers, and Educators

All the leaders and influential people who include Kulanu materials in their programs, classes, and other outlets –

there are too many to name, but you know who you are.

Thank you! 

Blog and Social Media Coordinators:

Matt Feldman

Wathira Nganga

Ivan Porto

Email Group Moderators:

Harriet Bograd

Remy Ilona

Shep Wahnon

Jack Zeller

Multimedia Coordinators:

Enid Bloch

Serge Etele

Emma Patterson

Jocelyn Spencer


American Jewish University – Brandeis Collegiate Institute

Coexist Campaign

Crypto Judaic Society

David Weingarten, Far West USY

Diva Communications (Debra and David Vinik)

Friends of Jewish Renewal in Poland – Beit Polska

Hillel Council of New England

The Hillels of Wellesley College, Trinity College, and Babson College

Jemglo.org (Ellen Friedland and Curt Fissel)

Judy Gray, Rabbi Andrew Sacks, Masorti Olami, Marom Uganda

Michael Freund, Shavei Israel

Rabbi Barbara Aiello

Rabbis Arnie Belzer and Anson Laytner, Sino-Judaic Institute

Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, Ohr Torah Stone

Rabbi Jeffrey Summit, Tufts Hillel (Abayudaya Higher Education Program)

Rabbi Marvin Tokayer

Relly Coleman, Books for Zim

Thanksgiving Coffee Company

Young Judea Year in Israel – Olami Program

Business Partners: Free Services

Google: Mail, Docs (GoogleDrive), Calendar, Maps, Analytics

Phanfare.com – online photo albums (free for nonprofits)

Youtube.com – video channel

Business Partners: Paid Services

Blackbaud/eTapestry (donor database)

OLM.net (web hosting)

Paypal.com (online store payment processing)

Prostores.com (online storefront)

Donors of $4,000 to $32,000:


Ben and Esther Rosenbloom Foundation

Brandeis Collegiate Institute

The Cherna Moskowitz Foundation

Coexist Foundation

Estelle Friedman Gervis Family Foundation

The Good People Fund

Irwin M and Elaine R Berg

Otto and Marianne Wolman Foundation

Lloyd Rubin

L Weider

Werner and Phoebe Frank Family Foundation

Jack and Diane Zeller

 … And thanks to our many other donors, with gifts from $5 and up!

As you can see, everything that Kulanu accomplishes is achieved through the hard work of “all of us”.

Many thanks to everyone who collaborates to support isolated and emerging Jewish communities around the world. We couldn’t do it without you!