Jewish Futures 2019 West Coast Conference

presented by The Hive at Leichtag Commons


Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz, Valley Beit Midrash

Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz is the President & Dean of the Valley Beit Midrash (Jewish pluralistic adult learning & leadership), the Founder & President of Uri L’Tzedek (Jewish Social Justice), the Founder and CEO of The Shamayim V’Aretz Institute (Jewish animal advocacy), the Founder and President of YATOM, (Jewish foster and adoption network), and the author of sixteen books on Jewish ethics. Newsweek named Rav Shmuly one of the top 50 rabbis in America and the Forward named him one of the 50 most influential Jews. Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz is also a social justice advocate and has been on the frontlines of the humanitarian crisis at the US/Mexico Border. He co-founded “Jews for Human Rights in Syria” and founded and leads the Jewish social justice group Arizona Jews for Justice. He also serves on the Phoenix Human Relations Commission.

Dr. Guila Benchimol, Researcher & Consultant on Sexual Violence

Dr. Guila Benchimol is a researcher and consultant on sexual violence. Guila is currently an advisor to the Safety, Respect, Equity Jewish coalition to address sexual harassment and gender discrimination. She is also a research assistant at the Centre for the Study of Social and Legal Responses to Violence where she works on projects related to homicide and domestic violence cases. Guila brings over ten years of experience as a Jewish educator to her work with various religious groups on gender based violence. She was previously the Managing Director of National Conference for Synagogue Youth (NCSY) Canada, the founder and director of an international NCSY overnight summer program for high school girls, and the Director of Judaic Studies at Tiferes Bais Yaakov where she also taught Tanach to grades 9 through 12. She is a proud alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship/Davidson Scholars program.

Eric Greene, Associate Communications Director for Diversity & Campus Climate, UCLA

Eric Greene currently serves as the Associate Communications Director for Diversity and Campus Climate at UCLA and as a Board Member for the Jewish Multiracial Network. Eric previously worked as Senior Policy Advisor at the ACLU of Southern California and as Southern California Regional Director for the Progressive Jewish Alliance/Bend the Arc. He has written or co-written several books on race, the arts and politics, and his first book, “Planet of the Apes as American Myth: Race, Politics and Popular Culture was hailed by the Los Angeles Times as a “classic.” A former CORO fellow in NY, he studied religion at Wesleyan University in Connecticut and Pardes in Jerusalem before attending Stanford Law School, where he served as vice president of the Black Law Students Association and was a co-founder of the West Coast Conference on Progressive Lawyering. In addition to his efforts as an organizer in national and local Jews of Color communities, Eric has served as a consultant working with Jewish organizations on diversity strategy.

Chaya Gilboa

Chaya Gilboa, Director of Jewish Engagement, Leichtag Foundation

Chaya Gilboa is the Foundation’s Director of Jewish Engagement, where she’s responsible for Jewish integration and education across all entities at Leichtag Commons with an emphasis on: The Hive at Leichtag Commons, Coastal Roots Farm and the Leichtag Foundation. Chaya is committed to creating alternatives within the realm of religion and state, establishing Hashgacha Pratit, an alternative kashrut system and active in crafting egalitarian wedding ceremonies and other initiatives that combine feminism and Jewish identity.

About The Hive

The Hive is a coworking and events center where we build a stronger, more connected community. Inspired by Jewish wisdom and our natural and farm surroundings, we provide a thriving environment for social entrepreneurs, nonprofits, and local community organizations to work, meet, and grow in a unique environment. Our goal is to become a model for community collaboration and to promote creative Jewish expression, both at home in Encinitas, California, and around the world.