Our Team

Have a question, an idea, or want to partner with us? Send our team a note at contact@tzedekbox.org.

Interested in joining our team? Check out our open volunteer roles here.

Andrew Mandel
Founder

Andrew K. Mandel (he/him) has spent his career dedicated to developing leaders for social change. A seventh-grade English teacher in South Texas after graduating from Harvard College, Andrew spent 16 years designing the national leadership programming at Teach For America and earned his doctorate at Teachers College in adult learning and leadership. In 2014, he co-founded Strong East Ramapo, a volunteer advocacy organization addressing educational inequity in his hometown. Seeking to grow Jewish communities that live out the Biblical call for justice, Andrew entered rabbinical school at Hebrew Union College in 2018 and has served Union Temple, Orangetown Jewish Center and Temple Sinai of Newington as a pastoral intern, adult educator, service leader and social justice coordinator. He received support from his Wexner Heritage Program cohort and the "Be Wise" Fellowship to lead a team to create Tzedek Box. He lives with his partner, Mozart, in Long Island City, Queens, and is uncle to two Brooklyn nephews.

Jill Rodde
Lead, Strategy and Operations

Jill Rodde currently serves as COO at Harlem Lacrosse, a sports-based youth development organization operating in New York, Baltimore, Boston, Los Angeles, and Philadelphia. She grew up in Minnesota, where she graduated from Carleton College in 2009. She began her career at Teach For America and spent five years working on the Alumni Affairs team; following that, she worked in the Division of Student Affairs at UC Berkeley. She also served as the founding Strategy and Operations Manager for Revolve, a peer-led community dedicated to personal, professional, and spiritual growth through the lens of Jewish values. Jill lives in Chicago with her husband.

Edon Valdman
Lead, Technology

Edon grew up in South Florida and the Chicago suburbs, before spending 4 years in the city of Chicago studying at Columbia College Chicago. At CCC, he got his degree in Music Technology, focusing on audio, music, and iOS app development.

A lifelong Conservative Jew, Edon first sparked an interest in Jewish learning during his time at various Jewish day schools throughout elementary and middle school. Edon is a proud Ramahnik, having spent two summers as a camper and six on music staff at Camp Ramah Wisconsin, where he taught lessons in various instruments and audio tech. He describes his time at camp as “instrumental” to his Jewish identity and particular love for Jewish music.

When he’s not helping create a space for online social justice, Edon works as a freelance video editor, audio engineer, and podcast producer, and spends his time free time playing video games, watching TV, and hanging out with his partner Agnes.

Jackie Fishman
Lead, Growth and Development

Jackie Fishman has spent her career partnering with philanthropists and nonprofits to achieve their goals through strategic, thoughtful, and effective grantmaking. Currently, Jackie is a Grants Officer at the Open Society Foundations where she focuses on grantmaking compliance. Previously, managed grants, programs, and operations at the Natan Fund, a giving circle and venture philanthropy fund that supports start-ups and social entrepreneurs addressing key challenges in Jewish communities around the world and Israel. Prior to her work at the Natan Fund, Jackie held positions at Hazon and the Foundation for Jewish Camp. Jackie holds a Masters in Public Administration from NYU Wagner and a BA in English and economics from Binghamton University.

Shirah Kraus
Lead, Educator Support

Shirah Kraus is a rabbinical-education student at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio (and Los Angeles, California). Before enrolling at HUC, Shirah completed her undergraduate degree at Bryn Mawr College where she majored in Religion and concentrated in Gender and Sexuality Studies.

Shirah has served as the student rabbi of B’nai Israel Congregation in Grand Forks, North Dakota and Temple Shalom in Lafayette, Louisiana. She has taught children and adults in synagogue, day school, and Jewish summer camp settings. In 2019, Shirah served as the director of Jewish Education at the URJ camp, GUCI. She is passionate about cultivating learning, social justice, and community -- and having fun in the process!

Shirah grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio with her parents, Rabbi Matthew Kraus and Rabbi Sissy Coran (z”l), and three siblings, age 28, 21, and 12. Shirah loves to play guitar and banjo, toss frisbee, make silly faces at babies, cook, puzzle, create art, and tell dad jokes.

Lauren Stock
Director, Outreach Programming

Lauren Stock (she/her), originally from Dallas, TX, is a senior at Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT where she will graduate in the spring of 2021 with her B.A. in Theater, Sociology, and Dance. Having grown up in the Reform movement, at the former URJ Kutz Camp, and in NFTY, Lauren prioritizes leadership and social justice in all of her work, with a specific love for supporting and mentoring teens. She continues to work with the RAC as a Teen Justice Fellowship Coach, and is a current member of the Commission on Social Action and URJ College Leadership Team.

Lauren is so excited to be joining the Tzedek Box team, combining her passion for Jewish social justice with her work as a director & theater-maker to share stories of the Jewish pursuit of justice in our everyday, 21st century lives.

Phoebe Ana Rabinowitsch
Lead, Partnerships

Phoebe Ana Rabinowitsch is a student at Yeshivat Maharat in the class of 2022. She grew up in South Florida and earned a B.A. in Religion and Anthropology from American University (Washington, DC). Phoebe Ana has completed various internships including placements with a national voter registration campaign, with Hillel International, and served as Multifaith Intern with New Sanctuary Coalition through Truah's Rabbinical Student Fellowship. Phoebe Ana studied at Hebrew University of Jerusalem and at Middlebury College Language Schools. She has studied Torah at Drisha, Hadar and Pardes, where she was involved in organizing a weekly partnership minyan. She has experience teaching English as a Second Language to adult learners and Hebrew and Judaic studies at various religious schools in New York City. Phoebe Ana is interested in exploring how to create a supportive and nourishing environment for all and is committed to further pursuing a society that reflects our values. She is a chaplain intern at New York-Presbyterian Hospital and lives in Washington Heights, New York.

Emily Hicks-Rotella
User Experience

Emily's vision statement: All mission-driven, social justice-oriented people and organizations will have the confidence and skills to learn, use and love data & technology as part of achieving their missions. Emily has over a decade of experience working with organizations of all shapes and sizes to support their data and technology culture and strategy. As part of this work, Emily supports staff members to learn, use, and love their data and technology, adds capacity to teams and organizations that need additional technical knowledge and skill, and uses a uniquely human and non-technical approach to develop and support a culture that sets up staff and organizations for success using data and technology for their missions and impact. Emily lives in the Bronx, New York with their wife and two young children, and when they aren't being a total data and tech nerd, they are either singing outside, snowboarding, reading, or getting more tattoos.


Alyssa Berman
Partnerships

Alyssa (she/her) is originally from Connecticut and has spent the last six years in Pittsburgh, PA attending the University of Pittsburgh, majoring in Political Science and minoring in Jewish Studies and post-graduation as a Repair the World fellow focusing in education justice. As a Repair fellow, she has been coordinating the PeerCorps program bringing together Jewish middle and high school student together in learning and service. She believes that Tzedek and Tikkun Olam are imperative to living a Jewish life and feels most connected to her Jewish community when attending a Shabbat Dinner (even on Zoom) or helping the people around her. Alyssa credits her parents, her childhood synagogue Congregation Kol Haverim, and her eight summers at URJ Eisner Camp for her unwavering commitment to Judaism and the Jewish Community. She is extremely excited for her next step this summer, moving to the Upper West Side of New York City and beginning a position at Columbia/Barnard Hillel Kraft Center for Jewish Student Life.