This spring AJL will be holding its biennial election of
officers. Officers of the RAS and SSC divisions will also
be elected. Voting will begin Wed., April 25 and end at midnight
Thurs., May 24.
The election will be electronic. When voting begins, an email
message will be sent to every member who has an email address;
the message will contain a link to the ballot. Each member is assigned
a unique code to make sure that every member votes only once.
If your email address has changed since you filled out your membership
form, please update it by contacting Yossi Galron at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ballot for AJL 2012-2014
President: Heidi Estrin (This office is not voted upon since the President is automatically determined by being President-Elect.)
Job Description: Provides vision and leadership for the Association. Represents, promotes, and is spokesman for the association to the media ,educational associations, constituent institutions, professional organizations, and other occasions as they arise. Convenes meetings of the executive board and council. Designs the AJL Organizational Chart and establishes the reporting hierarchy. Appoints all AJL standing and ad hoc committee chairpersons. Reviews and signs contracts and legal documents on behalf of the Association. Serves on Finance committee along with VP and Treasurer, and participates in preparation of budgets. Acknowledges donors and grantors. Notifies members of good and welfare.
Heidi Rabinowitz Estrin has been the librarian at Congregation B’nai Israel, a large Reform synagogue in Boca Raton, Florida, since 1998. Upon hire, she was immediately drafted by AJL to help with the 1999 convention in Boca Raton, and being “dumped in the deep end” is what has led her to such an intense involvement with the organization. She has chaired the Mentoring Committee, the Sydney Taylor Book Award Committee, and the PR Committee, and has served as President of South Florida AJL. Heidi is the host of The Book of Life podcast, a show about Jewish books, music, film and web, which may be heard at bookoflifepodcast.com. She has served as Vice President/President-Elect since 2010.
Vice President/President-Elect: Yaffa Weisman, Ph.D; MLIS
Job Description: Oversees committees as determined by agreement with the President. Assumes responsibility for leading the organization if the president is unable to perform his/her duties. Assists the president in suggesting the names of new committee chairs and council members. Assists the president in communicating with members of the association, its council and its divisions, concerning developments affecting the association and the field of Judaica librarianship. Assists the president in representing the interests of the association to the wider library and research community. Serves on the Finance Committee.
Dr. Yaffa Weisman is the Library Director of The Frances-Henry Library, at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Los Angeles and Adjunct Associate Professor of Contemporary Jewish Studies, Louchheim School of Jewish Studies, USC/HUC. Israeli born & educated, she received her B.A. from the Theatre Department, Faculty of Arts, Tel Aviv University (1975)and completed her doctoral studies in Comparative Literature at USC (1994), and her Masters of Library Studies at UCLA (1999). She is an avid reader with a rich history as a writer, translator and literary critic. She has been known to dabble and teach in the areas of Israeli culture, detective fiction and texts of faith from the Second Temple Period.
Vice President for Membership: Sheryl Stahl
Job description: Maintains a database of membership records. Oversees the life membership committee. Records membership payments in data-base and sends checks to the Treasurer. Produces mailing labels and sends updates of list to RC-Direct. Informs the chapter presidents of new members in their area. Maintains membership database accessible to members only on the AJL website,searchable by various categories - executive board, council, location, individual name, organization, ... Prepares updates of membership records and sends quarterly reports of new members to the editor of the AJL News and Reviews. Prepares and sends renewal invoices and reminders. Works with the VP for publications for the sale of our publications to members. Prepares statistical data for presentation of membership reports twice yearly at the council meetings, or as needed.
Sheryl Stahl is Senior Associate Librarian at The Frances-Henry Library, at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Los Angeles. She has served as AJL treasurer for the past 3 1/2 years. At the Frances-Henry Library, she catalogs, does reference, bibliographic instruction, serves as library webmaster, and clears jams in the copy machine. In her spare time she quilts, gardens, and reads science fiction and whatever else she can get her hands on.
Vice President for Publications: Joyce Levine
Job description: Chairs the Publications Committee. Responsible for all functions related to AJL’s monographic publications. Specific duties related to AJL monographic publications include their ISBN registration, publication, storage, and vending, which includes responding to questions about the publications and their purchase. Oversees the Bibliography Bank chair and consults as needed with the Proceedings, News and Reviews, and Judaica Librarianship editors. Additional duties include the receipt of payments for purchase and transfer of payments to the AJL treasurer, and maintenance of production and sales records and expenses incurred, such as postage and printing costs. Solicits new and updated publications from the membership, circulates submitted manuscripts for critique to knowledgeable AJL members and/or members of the publications committee, and oversees their editing. Investigates and initiates new publishing formats as needed. Maintains an updated Publications order form and submits it to the AJL webmaster for publication on the AJL website. Also submits it at least annually to the AJL News and Reviews editor. Works with the Public Relations committee to find effective and appropriate ways to advertise publications both to the membership and the wider world. Brings sample publications to the annual convention.
Joyce Levine is the Director, Library/Media Center at North Shore Hebrew Academy HS, Great Neck, NY. Joyce earned her Library Certification from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. In previous incarnations she has worked as a medical librarian, a public librarian and an elementary school librarian. She established two new Jewish high school libraries, including the one at her present school, where she has held the position of Library Director (and Chief Clerk) for the past 11 years. Joyce has also been an Avi Chai Bookshelf mentor and coordinator, AJL co-Surveyer and wiki wizard. Now serving as President of AJL’s Synagogue, Schools and Centers Division, Joyce looks forward to the challenge of working as Vice President for Publications.
Corresponding Secretary: Elana Gensler
Job Description: Handles telephone and e-mail inquiries. Updates AJL’s listings in various publications. Fills out forms for directories and indexes. Arranges AJL midwinter board and council meetings. Distributes AJL stationery and other supplies. Sells and distributes AJL tribute cards. Is responsible for maintaining bulk-mailing permits from N.Y. Payment of $150 must be made every year and a bulk mailing must go out from N.Y. every two years. This mailing is done through a bulk mailing company.
Elana Gensler holds an MLS from Queens College and is currently a reference librarian at the West Hempstead Public Library in NY. Previously, she served as the library media specialist at the Hebrew Academy of Long Beach. Elana is the current AJL Recording Secretary and is the editor of Sifria, the newsletter of the Long Island chapter of AJL. Other AJL activities include: Publications VP, Bibliography Bank chair, co-chair of the 2004 AJL Convention, and editor of the program book for several conventions.
Recording Secretary: Jolie Baron
Job Description: Oversees the Archives Committee. Records minutes at Executive Board, Council and general membership meetings. Prepares the minutes, along with indexes, for circulation to the Board. Minutes of the general membership meeting are sent to the News and Reviews in time for inclusion in the September/October issue. Maintains an official AJL Minutes Book, which should include an index each year. Maintains two official sets of minutes with corrections, one for the next secretary and one for the archives. Keeps a record of resolutions passed at Council meetings and updates the official record of AJL resolutions approved by Council.
Jolie Baron has been involved with the KOH Library and Cultural Center in Sacramento, California since its inception in 2008. She has her BA in early childhood education, followed by a multi-subject teaching credential. She runs most aspects of the library, along with a staff of very dedicated volunteers. When she’s not at the library, she’s a kindergarten teacher at the Jewish day school. Besides her passion for books and Jewish learning, Jolie enjoys traveling, book clubs, games, and spending time with her family and very spoiled dog.
Treasurer: Deborah Stern
Job Description: Manage checkbook. Write checks, pay bills. Deposits, Record keeping. Reconcile bank account with Quicken files. Prepare Reports to the Board and Council. Prepare report for mid-winter, preliminary end-of-year report at convention, and then final report when all convention expenses are in. Publish in fall newsletter. Propose budget for following year. Issue tax receipts for single donations of more than $250. Prepare materials for the accountant to use to file taxes by end of July. Credit History.
Debbie Stern is the director of the Mordecai M. Kaplan Library at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. She was educated at George Washington, Brandeis, and Columbia Universities. She was the chair of the AJL Scholarship Committee for four years and then AJL Vice President for Publications for the last six years. When not busy working for RRC or AJL, she enjoys reading – of course, cooking, and most of all playing with her adorable little granddaughters who blessedly live with their parents only a mile away.
RAS President: Daniel Scheide
Daniel Scheide is a cataloger for Florida Atlantic University, previously employed as a metadata specialist for OCLC. He has served as RAS secretary and RAS Vice-President making this foray into the RAS presidency tediously predictable. He also serves as co-editor for adult book reviews for the AJL News & Reviews (which he still refers to as ‘the Newsletter’). His wit and charm have made him one of AJL’s most beloved members.
RAS Vice President: Yoram Bitton or Sharon Benamou
Yoram Bitton is the Director of the New York Klau Library at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He previously served as the Hebrew Manuscript Cataloger at Columbia University, where he cataloged over 1500 Hebrew manuscripts. He has also taught at the Skirball Center for Adult Jewish Learning at Temple Emanuel in New York City and at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. Yoram has a M.L.S. from Queens College and a degree from Hebrew University in Talmud and Jewish History.
VISION: My main goal is to increase the presence of young academic librarians in AJL. I would like to publicize the option of becoming a librarian as a career path for young scholars in Judaic Studies. The current president and vice president of RAS have done a great job keeping members informed of new books and resources and building a community of librarians. I would like to build on these efforts to grow and strengthen RAS within AJL.
Sharon Benamou is the Hebraica/Judaica and Music Catalog Librarian at UCLA. She received a BA in Music from the State University of New York at Binghamton, an MA in Musicology at UCLA and an MLIS from San Jose State University. She is active in both the Association of Jewish Libraries, serving on as the current Local Convention Committee Co-Chair and Cataloging Committee Vice-Chair, and in the Music Library Association, serving on the Authorities Subcommittee of the Bibliographic Control Committee and the Integrated Library Systems Committee. She served on the Program for Cooperative Cataloging’s Task Force on Non-Latin Script Cataloging to create standards for input of vernacular scripts in catalog records.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:
Many librarians in academic, specialized libraries and archives have Jewish or Israel Studies as only part of their work responsibility. If elected as RAS Vice President, I would like to increase professional continuing education opportunities in Jewish and Israel Studies through webinars on the AJL website so that we will reach out to our members who attend convention as well as those who do not. It would also provide the opportunity to reach out to librarians with responsibility in Jewish or Israel Studies who are not members to provide mentoring and training that in turn might increase our membership.
RAS Secretary: Michelle Chesner
Michelle Chesner is the Norman E. Alexander Librarian for Jewish Studies at Columbia University, as well as the Chair of the Judaica Librarianship and Education Commitee at AJL. She has worked at the Jewish Theological Seminary and the University of Pennsylvania, as well as the rare Judaica auction house, Kestenbaum and Company.
SSC President: Lisa Silverman
Lisa Silverman is the director of the Sinai Temple Blumenthal Library at Sinai Temple, the largest conservative synagogue in Los Angeles. She leads classes and book groups, along with organizing community programs on literature. She also serves as a consultant for other Jewish libraries throughout the United States that are looking to modernize or computerize their libraries. She was the children’s editor of Jewish Book World magazine for 5 years and is now the children’s literature reviewer for the Jewish Journal of Los Angeles. She has often been a featured speaker at library conventions or literary conferences.
She has been a board member of the Association of Jewish Libraries of Southern California for many years. She served for a number of years as a judge for the children’s division of the National Jewish Book Award and also for the “Once Upon a World” Book Award given annually by the Simon Weisenthal Center.
SSC Vice President: Talli Dippold or Amalia Warshenbrot
Talli Dippold is the Executive Director of the Levine-Sklut Judaic Library & Resource Center in Charlotte N.C. The Levine-Sklut Judaic Library is unique in that it is part of a collaborate campus called Shalom Park that houses all of Charlotte’s Jewish agencies. The Library serves as an integral part of the campus and serves a Jewish Day School, two Jewish preschools, various agencies and numerous Temples. Talli received a B.S. in Hospitality Management from the University of New Hampshire. After many years in the hospitality industry she decided to change her focus and pursue her lifelong passion for reading and books. Talli was the co-president of Hillel during her years in college and has taught Hebrew for many years. Last year she received an exceptional volunteer award from the Levine Jewish Community Center in Charlotte. Talli is a native of Jerusalem, Israel and is fluent in Hebrew. When she is not working, Talli enjoys spending time with her three active children.
Amalia Warshenbrot served as the Head Librarian of the Speizman Jewish Library in Charlotte, NC for 18 years before transitioning to the role of Executive Director of the Levine-Sklut Judaic Library & Resource Center for 4 additional years. Under her leadership, both institutions were awarded AJL Basic and Advanced accreditation. Amalia holds a degree in Jewish Studies from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, as well as a certificate in Church and Synagogue Librarianship from the University of Utah. Amalia has been active in AJL for the past 25 years. She is currently the chairperson of the Chapter Relations Committee. Some of her past positions include: Bibliography Bank (founder), Mentoring Committee, Weine Cataloging System Users Committee, Accreditation Committee (co-chair), and the Southeast Regional Representative to AJL Council.
STATEMENT OF PURPOSE: My main goal is to create awareness of the value of librarians in Jewish education and help librarians to improve their skills. I plan work with the SSC president to initiate new programs for SSC members, including those that increase the involvement of school, synagogue and center librarians in AJL. In addition, I will continue to help the Chapter Relations chairperson to strengthen current chapters, create new ones and recruit young librarians to join AJL.
SSC Secretary: Cherille Berman
Cherille Berman is the Director of the Tarbut V'Torah Community Day School High School Library. She is a graduate of University of Cape Town (B.A.) the University of the Witwatersrand (Library Science) and National University (Multiple Subject Teaching Credential). Cherille has worked as a university librarian, an oil industry librarian, and for the past 25 years as a school librarian (elementary, middle and high school level). In 1999, she became the librarian for Tarbut's newly established library. As an active member of the community, she has served as a Human Rights Commissioner for the Irvine City Council, as an Irvine Education Foundation Trustee and on various committees at Beth Jacob of Irvine. Prior to her move to California, Cherille was elected to serve on the Public Library Board for the city of Wilmette, Illinois. The Tarbut Board of Directors recognizes its important role in spreading Jewish literacy and so the Library is open not only to students and their families, but also the wider community, as it is houses the largest collection of Judaic books in Orange County.