MEET OUR FACULTY AND STAFF
Karen Beck is a proud product of the Or Hadash Religious School. Having attended the Or Hadash Religious School from first grade through Confirmation, Karen re-joined the Or Hadash family in 2012 to teach Judaics to our 2nd and 3rd grade students on Sunday and Hebrew and prayer to our 4th and 5th grade students on Tuesdays. While she was earning her reform teaching certificate through Gratz college; she worked at Or Hadash as a teachers’ aide. Karen earned her bachelors’ degree from West Chester University and her masters’ degree from Arcadia University (both in education). She is certified to teach elementary education, special education and middle school English. Recently, Karen taught Gan, second grade and Orot (special education) at Perelman Jewish Day School, but is now a stay at home mom in addition to her teaching at Or Hadash. Karen also serves as the Teacher Representative on the Or Hadash Education Steering Committee which meets once a month to govern our religious school. Karen enjoys volunteering with various organizations including the National Ovarian Cancer Coalition. Karen lives in Ambler with her husband (Chris), son (Noah) and miniature dachshund (Watson).
Vivian Lichtman was born in New York, where she taught Sunday school before moving to Pennsylvania. She received an M.Ed. degree in education and school counseling. She earned 24 years of experience teaching and counseling children from Kindergarten through 8th grade before she retired in June, 2008. She wrote grants and received money for some valuable projects and facilitated community service learning activities at her schools. Vivian has taught Sunday school and 3rd grade Hebrew school at Or Hadash since 2005.
Bonnie Ritterman has been teaching at Or Hadash since 1999. As our Resource Room teacher, she helps students to unleash their full potential with remediation and acceleration as well as work on learning differences. Bonnie has taught all levels of public elementary school. She is part of the Or Hadash community and lives in Dresher with her husband, Fred.
Lori Rubin has been a member of Or Hadash for the past 15 years. Having taught religious school in Conservative, Reform and Reconstructionist settings for over 25 years, she is excited to bring her experiential skills to our 8th and 9th grade class. Lori served as our Educational Director for 12 years, our Programming Coordinator for 2 years, and currently serves on our Board of Directors as co-chair of our Social Action/Tikkun Olam (SATO) committee. At Camp JRF, the Reconstructionist movement’s overnight camp, she has been the Rosh Hinuh, Director of Education, and currently is the Tikkun Olam Program Coordinator. When she is not at Or Hadash, Lori is the Director, Family Engagement at Jewish Learning Venture, where she enjoys building relationships with families, facilitating Jewish programming in public spaces, and serving as a consultant to congregations looking to enhance their family engagement opportunities. Lori, and her husband Jon, have three children: Alex, a junior at Northwestern University, Abby, a freshman at Washington University in St. Louis, and Hilary, a 9th grader at Unami Middle School who have all grown up at Or Hadash.
Carolyn Savitzky began teaching religious school in 1988 while earning her teaching certification from the South Jersey Bureau of Jewish Education. Over the years, she has taught at a number of synagogue schools in the region. In 1995, Carolyn and her family joined Or Hadash and she began teaching in the religious school the following year. Carolyn has taught students of all ages, from pre-school through adult. In addition to her work in the classroom, Carolyn tutors B’nai Mitzvah students and serves as a service leader for our Gan students in Pre-K through first grade. Carolyn teaches at Or Hadash on both Tuesday for our 6th grade Hebrew class which focusses on B’nai Mitzvah preparation, prayer fluency and leadership; and Sunday when she teaches our youngest Gan students.
OUR MADRICHIM (Leadership Assistants)
Our proud tradition at Or Hadash is to groom our students to assume a leadership role in our Religious School in 8th – 12th grades. Our Bnai Mitzvah students often volunteer in 7th grade in preparation for this sought-after role. As Madrichim, they assist in our classes in the first session from 9:00-10:45 and then continue their Jewish education within our Hebrew High program in second session from 10:45-1:00. They attend professional development programs designed and implemented by our Education Director to learn leadership and pedagogical skills that they can put to use in their classroom.
Are valued Madrichim are:
Abbe Goldstein- TAP graduate*
*TAP – Teen Aid Program, students learn how to effectively assist in congregational schools.