Gail Twersky Reimer, Ph.D., Executive Director
Gail Twersky Reimer is Founding Director of the Jewish Women’s Archive, a pioneering organization dedicated to uncovering, chronicling and transmitting the rich legacy of Jewish women in North America.
A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College, Reimer received her Ph.D. in English and American Literature from Rutgers University. She began her professional career as a faculty member at Wellesley College where she was awarded fellowships from the American Association of University Women and the Bunting Institute at Radcliffe College and received the prestigious Pinanski Prize for excellence in teaching.
From 1988 to 1995, Dr. Reimer was Associate Director of the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities (MFH), the state-based program of the National Endowment for the Humanities.
In the early 1990s, Reimer conceived and co-edited two path-breaking anthologies of Jewish women’s writings—Reading Ruth: Women Reclaim a Sacred Story and Beginning Anew: A Woman’s Companion to the High Holy Days. This work led to the founding of the Jewish Women’s Archive in 1995.
The Jewish Women’s Archive has become a leading advocate for and center of education in Jewish women’s history, ensuring that we remember the women who came before us, honor the women among us, and inspire those who will follow us. Reimer’s leadership of JWA has been acknowledged with numerous awards including being named by The Forward as one of the 50 most influential Jews of the year in 2001 and by Womens e-news in 2006 as one of its “21 Leaders for the 21st Century,” and in 2011 being honored by Auburn Theological Seminary at its “Lives of Commitment” event and by Hebrew College with the Dr. Benjamin J. Shevach Memorial Award for Distinguished Achievement in Jewish Educational Leadership. In 2012, Dr. Reimer was awarded the American Jewish Distinguished Service Award from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR).
Email Gail Reimer / Tel: (617) 383-6752
Stephen Benson, Executive Assistant
Stephen Benson has worked previously in executive administrative positions at the New England Eye Institute, Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center, and Jackson & Company public relations. He has taught theatre classes and directed productions at the College of the Holy Cross, Tufts University, Middlesex Community College, and Wilkes University in Pennsylvania. He received his B.A. in English and Theatre from Tufts University.
Email Stephen Benson / Tel: (617) 383-6751
Velda Shaby, Director of Digital Strategy
Velda Shaby is a seasoned software architect with years of experience developing websites as well as creating and evaluating strategies to provide digital solutions to the business community. Her previous experience includes 30+ years working with cutting-edge technology at Digital and Fidelity Investments. She has also devoted her energies to several Jewish communities in the Boston area and draws on these various experiences along with her passion for people and Jewish causes to focus on strategies for JWA's online presence. Velda has a BS in physics and an MS in math and teaches at Northeastern University’s Digital Media Department.
Email Velda Shaby / Tel: (617) 383-6766
Patrick Dash, Web Developer
Patrick Dash brings his enthusiasm, technical knowledge, and passion for web development to JWA. Patrick studied English at Boston University, where he also discovered his interest in web design, building a new website for the Student Activities Office. He has since worked for various companies designing and maintaining websites, and spent several years working for a student financing company in many capacities, including Information Management. Patrick is excited to continue his career at JWA.
Email Patrick Dash / Tel: (617) 383-6767
Ellen K. Rothman, Ph.D., Deputy Director
Like JWA's founder and Executive Director, Ellen K. Rothman comes to JWA from the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities where she served as Associate Director for 11 years. A graduate of Radcliffe College, she received her Ph.D. in the History of American Civilization from Brandeis. While trained as an academic historian, she has spent most of her career in the public humanities—working in museums, developing curricula, producing programs for public radio and college-level distance learning, and creating an electronic almanac of Massachusetts history, MassMoments. Her book, Hands and Hearts: A History of Courtship in America, was published by Basic Books and in paperback by Harvard University Press.
Email Ellen Rothman / Tel: (617) 383 6756
Etta King, Education Program Manager
Etta King combines her enthusiasm for learning and her passion for working with people in her role as the Education Program Manager at the Jewish Women’s Archive. Etta earned a B.A. in Education Studies from Brandeis University and studied community development in the Washington Semester Program at American University. Before joining the JWA, Etta taught at the Leslie Science and Nature Center in Ann Arbor, MI, as well as with Boston-Area Jewish Education Program (BJEP) in Waltham, MA.
Email Etta King / Tel: (617) 383-6763
Michelle Provorny Cash, Director of Communications
Michelle Provorny Cash has worked for nearly two decades as a poet, writer and editor. Her passion for stories is equaled by her interest in entrepreneurship and social innovation, a connection born out of her work with the Canadian Centre for Social Entrepreneurship and her experience as program director for the Joshua Venture fellowship for Jewish social entrepreneurs. Michelle has a background in print and online publishing, an MFA in creative writing from the University of Maryland and BAs in History and Literature/Rhetoric from Binghamton University. She is honored to help empower women to voice and share their own stories.
Email Michelle Provorny Cash / Tel: (617) 383-6753
Jordyn Rozensky, Director of Social Media
Jordyn Rozensky completed her undergraduate studies at Smith College. Smith’s history of cultivating strong women helped to focus her feminism, although she credits her passions for equality and social justice to her mother, father, and sister. A native of the Chicago-land area, Jordyn moved to Boston in 2006. Since then she completed a dual masters at Brandeis University in Public Policy and at the Hornstien School of Jewish Professional Leadership. She left Boston in 2010 to serve as a research intern at the Arava Institute of Environmental Studies at Kibbutz Ketura in Southern Israel, returning to spend three years as the Director of Young Adult and Service Programs at the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston. As a storyteller she wields her camera to capture the world in Boston and beyond, with her documentary, wedding and event work featured at www.jordynrozensky.com. Jordyn is pleased to take the position of postmaster general for the JWA’s social media fleet and its blog, Jewesses with Attitude.
Email Jordyn Rozensky / Tel: (617) 383-6761