About Olami

We are a community of believers.

We believe in Jewish greatness. We believe that Jewish teachings and values enable each Jew to reach their inner potential, to achieve their greatness. We call it our “Jewish greatness”, because we are achieving it through Judaism.

We believe in the power of community. We are not in this alone. We are a part of something bigger, something greater, something global. And something powerful. A global community focused on reaching our own personal greatness and inspiring others to reach theirs. Because as Jews, we believe that we are in this together, side by side. We are one family, one nation, one people. We are responsible for each other. Always have been, always will be.

We believe that the power of our community is the passion of our people. We are enthusiastic students and young professionals who want to be our best and make a difference in the world. We bring a vast and vibrant peer-to-peer network and social connections that span the globe. We are wise and passionate mentors and educators who are grounded in education, wisdom and knowledge and who role model a path of excellence. We are community members who believe in the vision and want to come on board to provide the guidance and resources so that we can all achieve it.

While every Olami member organization is independent, we all share a common vision, and work together through sharing of resources, ideas, programs, training and more in order to get us closer to that vision. Find an organization close to you here.

To date, over 100,000 students’ lives worldwide have been impacted by Olami.

Your support can help us to reach even more young Jews and to ensure that the next generation is inspired, educated and committed to our Jewish future.

OUR STORY

Over a decade ago, in response to the alarming rate of assimilation in the Jewish college communities across the globe, a number of benefactors joined together to launch a worldwide campus and young professional effort to reconnect Jews to their heritage, their faith and their land and to inspire Jewish greatness within each of them.

Now, over ten years later, Olami is a global community representing a united effort of organizations in over 300 locations around the world to secure an inspired, engaged and knowledgeable Jewish tomorrow.

With the Olami Foundation providing manpower, program development and management, students all over the world are experiencing the exhilaration of Jewish living through textual study, Shabbat, seminars and trips, and most critically, through the eternal bond between the Diaspora Jew and the State of Israel.

MEET OUR TEAM

RABBI DAVID MARKOWITZ

Managing Director
Rabbi David Markowitz has been focused on Jewish Outreach for the past 15 years. He has worked in numerous outreach capacities including: educational development, programming, Kiruv training, camp programming, campus outreach and management. Prior to his role with Olami, he worked at the COO of Aish NY and a campus Rabbi in UCLA and managed 10 college campuses for JAM in LA.

RABBI RAPHAEL BUTLER

President
Rabbi Raphael Butler is the President of Olami and The Afikim Foundation, a leading consultant to many in the philanthropic community who seek his guidance to assist them in fulfilling their communal priorities.

YISRAEL SCHWEBEL

CFO

RABBI AVI CASSEL

Regional Director, North America
Rabbi Avi Cassel directs over 110 Olami programs, servicing more than 20,000 students around North America. He also oversees STARS, a multi-organization partnership project in the former Soviet Union. Rabbi Cassel is a graduate of the world's top yeshivot including Mir, Lakewood, and Ner Israel, and has more than 15 years of management and education experience for Olami.

RABBI GIDON SHOSHAN

Senior Manager, Director of Educator Recruitment, North American Region

RABBI MEIR ROSENBERG

CEO Latin America

RABBI Arieh marciano

Regional Director, France
• Rabbi Arieh Marciano, Regional Director France After learning in the best yeshivot including Jerusalem's Yeshiva Hazon Baroukh and Yeshiva Heikhal Hatorah, Rabbi Marciano spent 10 years learning in a kollel. Rabbi Marciano has been leading Olami France for since 2008.

Rabbi Yakov Tipograf

Regional Director, FSU
Rabbi Yakov Tipograf has been focused on Jewish community work for the past 18 years, having worked in numerous capacities including: project management, educational development, programming and training. Prior to his role with Olami, he worked as substitute director of St. Peterburg Migdal Ohr Jewish school, and as inspector of FSU Jewish school network. Rabbi Tipograf has an MA in Computer Science and worked for a few years in micro-processing.

Rabbi Eli Ilani

Regional Director, Israel

Jackie Engel

Director of Leadership Development
Jackie had a private practice in Sydney Australia and worked as the resident “Psychologist” on the national “Today Show”. Jackie also consulted and did organizational work for the police, media personalities and other non-profit organizations. Jackie Engel is now the Director of Leadership Development of Olami, Director of the Jewish Leaders Foundation, Director of Souled a Jewish women’s empowerment program in Manhattan and a teacher for Meor Manhattan.

MICHAL NORDMANN

Director of Marketing
After graduating from Leeds University, Michal embarked on a career in marketing in London, implementing many successful and award-winning campaigns for Virgin, Heinz, and more. She then became Group Account Director working for the U.K.’s largest charities. In 2009 she moved to New York, where for five years she took her experience in-house to Aish NY. Upon moving to Israel, Michal became a consultant to a range of nonprofits, before focusing her efforts on Olami.

Rabbi Ari Gruen

Director of Trips
Rabbi Ari Gruen has extensive experience in the area of trips, both as a certified tour guide, and in his previous position as Masa Yehudi’s project manager, where he was responsible for NCSY’s summer programs in Israel. He also has fourteen years of experience in the business world and served as the Director of Yeshivat Ashreinu, focusing his skills on both the educational, and extra-curricular aspects of programming.

Rabbi Yitz Greenman

Strategic Advisor
Rabbi Greenman studied Political Science and Economics at Brandeis University and Hebrew University and was ordained as a rabbi at Aish HaTorah in Jerusalem. After years of study in Israel, Yitz and his wife Leah moved to NYC to start Aish NY. During his years at Aish Yitz fund raised for multiple organizations and projects that he had the privilege of founding and co founding. In 20017 Yitz decided he wanted to work on more global projects and was delighted to join Olami.
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