Dana Beyer, MD

Executive Director, Gender Rights Maryland; Board Chair, Freedom to Work

Dana is a retired eye surgeon who, after seven years on the board of Equality Maryland, served for eight years as Executive Director of Gender Rights Maryland, the state’s trans political organization, which worked the Maryland gender identity bill to passage in 2014. She served a term as a senior adviser for Councilmember Trachtenberg on the Montgomery County Council. She was chair of the national advisory board of Freedom to Work and wrote a weekly column for the Huffington Post from 2012-18. She has served on the Rules Committee of the national Democratic Party, and has twice run for state delegate and twice for state Senate in Maryland’s District 18. She was inducted into the Montgomery County Human Rights Hall of Fame in 2014, and served on the county’s Committee on Hate/Violence from 2015-18. She is a recipient of the University of Pennsylvania Women in Medicine Award for 2020. Dana is a proud mother of two sons and grandmother of two very cute granddaughters.

Image is a headshot of Jeremy Burton

Jeremy Burton

Executive Director, Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston

he/him/his

Jeremy Burton is the Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston (JCRC). Through advocacy, organizing, service and partnerships JCRC defines and advances the values, interests and priorities of the organized Jewish community of Greater Boston in the public square. Previously he was the Senior Vice President of Programs at the Jewish Funds for Justice, and Vice President of Programs at the Jewish Funders Network. Jeremy also served as a board member of Keshet, working for the full inclusion of LGBT Jews in Jewish life. Jeremy came to the Jewish community from a career in political strategy and public communications, having worked for New York Mayor David N. Dinkins, Manhattan Borough President Ruth Messinger, the 1996 Clinton/Gore Re-Election Campaign, and the New York State Assembly & Attorney General, among others.

Jeremy writes and speaks widely about challenges and opportunities facing the Jewish community. He has been published widely, including in the New York Jewish Week, the Jewish Forward, Zeek, Sh’ma, and the Washington Post: On Faith. The JTA included him in their 2010 “Twitter 100” list of the most influential Jewish voices on Twitter. You can follow him @BurtonJM. Jeremy has a B.A. in political science from Queens College of the City University of New York.

Gali Cooks Headshot.

Gali Cooks

President & CEO, Leading Edge

she/her/hers

Gali Cooks is the President & CEO of Leading Edge, an organization formed in 2014 by foundations and federations to influence, inspire and enable dramatic change in attracting, developing and retaining top talent for Jewish organizations. Gali’s professional experience spans the public, private and nonprofit sectors.

Her career began as a speechwriter at the Embassy of Israel and a Legislative Assistant at AIPAC. She then joined the Harold Grinspoon Foundation as Founding Director of the PJ Library. From 2007-2013, Gali was Executive Director of the Rita & Stanley Kaplan Family Foundation. In the private sector, Gali was VP of Operations at an education technology startup.

Gali holds a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.B.A. from the NYU Stern School of Business. In 2016, she was named one of the Forward 50, an annual list of the top 50 Jews influencing American life, for her efforts to build the next generation of leaders. She lives with her wife and daughter in Brooklyn, NY.

Ann Falchuk headshot.

Ann Falchuk

she/her/hers

Forty-one years ago Anne moved from Manhattan to Newton, Massachusetts to share my life with my husband, Myron. Their family grew to include three incredible daughters who gifted them with four grandchildren. During the years, Anne served on the boards of the Solomon Schecter Day School, Temple Mishkan Tefila, Jewish Family and Children Service and Keshet.

Anne participated in raising funds for Mass Equality and was present when Governor Deval Patrick signed the bill for marriage equality. Her goal is to leave this world a safer and equal place for all.

 

Image is a headshot of Asher Gelman

S. Asher Gelman

Director, Midnight Theatricals, New York City

he/him/his

S. Asher Gelman is a director, choreographer, actor, dancer, playwright, and producer. Through his production company, Midnight Theatricals, he produced and directed his first original play, Afterglow, which ran for 14 months Off-Broadway at the Davenport Theater. In 2019, Gelman’s second play, safeword., opened Off-Broadway in April, and he also produced the Off-Broadway musical, We Are The Tigers by Preston Max Allen. Most recently, Gelman directed, choreographed, and produced the short dance for film The Greatest City in the World. Originally from Chevy Chase, MD, Asher received his Bachelors Degree in Dance and Theater from Bard College in New York in 2006 and his Masters in Fine Arts in Dance from The George Washington University in Washington DC in 2012. From 2006 to 2016, Asher lived in Tel Aviv, Israel, where he became one of the founders of The Stage, Tel Aviv’s premier English language performing arts organization, serving as its first Artistic Director from 2013 to 2016. He serves on the Advisory Board of the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College. Asher lives in New York City with his husband, Mati.

Karla Goldman, Ph.D.

Sol Drachler Professor of Social Work, University of Michigan

she/her/hers

Karla Goldman is Sol Drachler Professor of Social Work and Professor of Judaic Studies at the University of Michigan where she directs the Jewish Communal Leadership Program. She is a scholar whose work focuses on the history of American Jewish communities and the experience of American Jewish women. She served on the Keshet board from 2008-2017. She is currently a member of the Jewish Women’s Archive Board of Directors, which she co-chaired from 2016-2019. She is the author of “Beyond the Gallery: Finding a Place for Women in American Judaism,” (Harvard University Press, 2000).

 

Daniel Heller

Daniel Heller

VP of Finance & Operations, Social Construct

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Daniel is VP of Finance & Operations for Social Construct, a San Francisco-based construction technology startup that radically reduces construction costs to help the market provide high-quality urban apartments for the middle class. Prior to Social Construct, Daniel founded The Welcoming Committee, a venture-backed LGBTQ events and travel company. He has a background in product management (Amazon.com), strategy consulting (Infosys Consulting), and LGBTQ rights (Human Rights Campaign, Friendfactor). He is originally from Washington, DC, and has an M.B.A. from the Harvard Business School and a B.A. in economics from Wesleyan University.

 

 

Debbie Heller headshot.

Debbie Heller

she/her/hers

Debbie Heller, a native of New York, is a graduate of Lehman College and holds graduate degrees from Michigan State University and Johns Hopkins University. She has worked as coordinator of student activities at the University of Detroit, director of student activities at Georgetown University and assistant director of the middle school at Charles E. Smith Jewish Day, but she considers her greatest and proudest job to be that of stay-at-home mom to her three sons, Adam, Daniel and Jacob. All of Heller’s jobs have involved creating inclusive and safe communities for students. At Smith Jewish Day School, she focused her efforts on combating bullying, which served as a segue to her advocacy work on behalf of the LGBTQ community. Heller was part of the volunteer team that created the Keshet Parent and Family Connection, which she continues to spearhead in the Washington, D.C., Metro area. She is on the board of directors of Kol Shalom, in Rockville, Md., where she focuses on programming. She also volunteers with Project Knitwell, a group that teaches knitting to children and adults who are in stressful situations. Heller and her husband, Jamie, live in Chevy Chase, Md.

Robert Holgate

Robert Holgate

Founder, Robert Holgate Design

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Robert Holgate is an interior designer who has had his own design firm for nearly twenty years. A humanitarian as well as a designer, Robert is dedicated to critical social issues, with an emphasis on those affecting the LGBTQ community. With his hands-on approach to philanthropy and social justice, he supports the advancement of local and national social causes with both financial donations and design services. He has offered his design expertise to several San Francisco organizations, including the LGBT Center, Glide Memorial and New Conservatory Theatre Center. Robert has been on the New Conservatory Theatre Center board of directors since 2016, he was a co-chair of the annual major gift campaign of the National Center for Lesbian Rights for two consecutive years, and he consulted on fundraising strategies for the National AIDS Memorial Grove. Robert will bring a unique perspective to Keshet as the only non-Jewish board member.

Patty Jacobson

Patty Jacobson

she/her/hers

Patty Jacobson enjoyed a career of technology, product development, and problem solving before retiring in 2019. Her initial consulting practice helped small businesses improve operations and profitability. With a group of friends, she launched a Lotus Notes software development shop that was acquired before the dotcom bonfire. Patty took her business skills to the Jewish community, joining Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) as the VP of Marketing where she modernized marketing efforts, re-branded the organization, and built a social media presence before returning to the private sector. At IQVIA, a healthcare data and systems company, she launched a new patient big data asset and analytics platform. A curious and intrepid traveler, she enjoys far-flung adventures and wide open spaces. As a volunteer, Patty started the GLBT Team at CJP and continues to advocate for inclusion in the Jewish community. She holds an S.M. from the MIT Sloan School and a B.A. from Yale University.

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