We are thrilled to have a highly experienced team of trainers who will be working with us as Course Instructors during our Winter 2019 offering of Don’t Kvetch, Organize!. Course Instructors will be your guide throughout the course to support your learning, and each will facilitate a section of around 25-30 participants. You can read their bios below.
Alison Lee Sikowitz is a community organizer for the Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action (JALSA). She became passionate about social, economic and racial justice while organizing campaigns for campus workers’ rights and co-facilitating a political education class at Tufts University. Prior to her role with JALSA, Alison worked at the Boston Medical Center’s Immigrant & Refugee Health Program to improve immigrant patients’ access to legal services. She is a 2018 graduate of the J.O.I.N. for Justice Organizing Fellowship and has a B.A. in American Studies from Tufts University.
Graie is the National Organizer and Training Manager at Bend the Arc where he helps American Jews discover their own capacity to build a better and more beautiful world. He holds a MPP from Rutgers University and serves on the board of the Philadelphia Student Union and Jews in All Hues. He is a native of St. Louis and has a deep love for the midwest. Before joining Bend the Arc in June 2017, Graie was an interfaith organizer with the PICO National Network. He is a transmasculine Black Jewish G*d fearing justice lover.
Julie has spent much of the past decade working as a community organizer in CA and MA, primarily in faith based congregation-based settings, working on issues including immigration, criminal justice reform, minimum wage and sick time. She has trained in leadership development through the Selah/Rockwood Leadership Program, the Wexner Fellowship program, and as a fellow with JOIN for Justice. Julie holds a Masters in Non-Profit Management and is a candidate for a Masters in Social Work. Julie is active in building Jewish communities, and is currently on the Belonging and Allyship Coordinating Committee at her synagogue, working to understand and address white supremacy within the congregation. She likes going hiking, drinking tea, doing yoga and was surprisingly obsessed with the show The Americans.
Noah Schoen is a Pittsburgh-born, Boston-based organizer and Jewish liberation activist. He was first moved by the power of organizing in 2012, when he co-founded his campus chapter of J Street U. Since then, he has been passionate about supporting people to be more self-aligned by organizing to make big things happen in their communities. After five years of organizing in Jewish community, Noah worked at the Massachusetts AFL-CIO as a 2017-2018 JOIN for Justice fellow. He is currently developing an oral history project exploring narratives of anti-Semitism in the wake of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting.
Rachel Leiken is currently a graduate student at Harvard Divinity School studying theology, ritual embodiment, and faith-based organizing. She is interested in college chaplaincy, and is serving as a chaplain intern at Brown University. She is also a media and communication associate for the Inside Out Wisdom and Action Project, which helps Jewish change makers cultivate spiritual tools to sustain themselves and their activism. Rachel participated in the JOIN online class in 2015 and the JOIN fellowship in 2016-2017. Her placement was at The Labor Guild | Archdiocese of Boston, where she organized with union members around the Greater Boston area. Rachel is interested in work at the intersections of gender, Judaism, and justice.