Ellie served as an educator in Yeshivos for many years, only to realize that there was a vital element missing from his students' educational milieu - an address for their emotional health needs. From there, Ellie began rigorous training in social work and multiple psychotherapy modalities which culminated in the founding of Shlavim, a grass-roots organization aimed at bridging the gap between yeshivot and the world of emotional health. As a part of this process, Ellie delved into the business side of running a not-for-profit. As Shlavim grew, Ellie's name became synonymous with the cutting edge of emotional health and running an effective not-for-profit. When he's not changing the conversation on emotional health, Ellie enjoys designing brochures and making chicken and waffles for his family.
Director of Internal Operations
Michael Friedman is a new Oleh, coming to KLN from New Jersey. He has a Master’s in Public Administration (MPA) focusing on nonprofits and has worked for the last 10+ years in America with nonprofits. Michael has significant experience in building programs, managing programs and working with diverse and large teams. In his spare time, he enjoys spending time with his family, playing video games and reading fantasy genre novels.
Rina is a clinical social worker with over 30 years of experience in therapy, family counseling, clinical supervision and non-profit administration. She received her MSW from the University of Michigan and has additional post-graduate training in both family therapy and management of non-profit organizations. Rina places a premium on empirical evidence for programmatic success which she has instilled in Kav L’Noar, ensuring that all of our services are measured regularly and adjusted as needed. - Rina Berkus
Director of Programming
Akiva Harow is a clinical social worker with extensive experience working with youth at risk across a variety of settings and demographics. He has significant expertise working with olim, coming to KLN after working at Nefesh B’Nefesh in a number of roles including aliyah advisor and social worker. Akiva started at KLN 6 years ago as an individual and family therapist, moving on to head our school-based programs and eventually taking over as director of programming. When he's not transforming the lives of teens and their families, Akiva enjoys playing basketball with his kids.
Naomie Benchimol Nakache
Deputy Director of Programming
Naomie made aliyah from Paris when she was 18. She spent a year continuing her Jewish studies at Midreshet Lindenbaum, following which she completed a BA in psychology at Ariel University and an MSW at Hebrew University. Since starting at Kav L’Noar as a mentor in our new program for recent teenage French Olim. Naomie has worked to expand all of our French programming in several departments, eventually becoming deputy director of programming, utilizing her talent to advance Kav L’Noar’s services at all levels.
Director of Clinic Program
Rivkah made aliya with her family as a child. She graduated summa cum laude from Michlalah Jerusalem College and received her MSW from the Wurzweiler School of Social Work, earning the Faculty Award for Outstanding Scholarship. She has undergone postgraduate clinical training in couples and family therapy, sexual abuse, trauma, and clinical supervision. In addition to being the director of clinical services, Rivkah is also a family therapist, working primarily with adolescents and young adults as well as a supervisor for university students and therapists. When she is not working, she can be found roughing it with her boys or dabbling in homemade cuisine.
Director of Development
Abigail made aliyah from London in 2005, and has been working in development positions in Jerusalem’s non-profit organizations ever since. She holds a B.A. in Modern History from the University of Oxford, and an M.A. in Government from IDC Herzliya. She lives with her family in Ma’aleh Adumim.
With a background in social work and family therapy training, Mordechai worked at Shlavim in operations and development roles before coming to Kav L'Noar. Here at KLN Mordechai wears several hats including fundraising & development, community building, and hot dog advocacy. When not enjoying a few hot dogs with friends and family, Mordechai likes working at Kav L'Noar.