Leadership

Jonathan Cohen, President, The Cohen Camps

Jonathan’s grandparents founded The Cohen Camps, the non-profit family of three Jewish overnight camps which includes Camp Pembroke, Camp Tel Noar, and Camp Tevya. He has managed the organization for a decade, and is a recognized leader in the field of Jewish camping. To his love and knowledge of camp, he adds his 20 years of experience in the business world in product development, strategic planning and change management for financial and technology firms. Jonathan holds a BA in Philosophy from Brandeis University and an MBA from Cornell University.

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Amy Coran, Co-Director, Camp Pembroke

Amy is a second-generation Camp Pembroke alum, with 17 summers on Lake Oldham. Before returning to Pembroke in leadership roles, she directed residential services for adults with developmental disabilities for over a decade, partnering with families to create valuable experiences. She also volunteered in intensive roles with Alpha Epsilon Phi Sorority: she is passionate about the power of sisterhood! Amy holds a BS from University of Delaware in Human Services, Education and Public Policy, with a minor in Disabilities Studies. She also has a Masters in Human Resources Management from Lasell College.

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Becca Goldman, Co-Director, Camp Pembroke

Becca is so excited about her 16th summer at Camp Pembroke! Becca returned to Pembroke last summer as Assistant Director, after 8 years serving as the Assistant Director at Camp Tel Noar, helping to strengthen programming, the staff experience and camper care. Becca holds a BS in Hospitality and Tourism Management from University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She has also completed the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s Yitro Leadership Program for Assistant Directors and is pursuing her MBA at Bentley University.

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Ben Portnoy, Director, Camp Tevya

Devoted to Camp Tevya since first attending as a camper in 1997, Ben joined the year-round Tevya team in 2012 and has held multiple roles in the program and operational aspects of camp. Ben leads by example with a hands-on, camper-first approach. By teaching and cultivating 21st century skills in an immersive environment, Ben believes that Jewish summer camp truly has the power to change lives. He earned his BA from the University of Vermont, holds a certificate in nonprofit management from Northeastern University, and is pursuing his MBA at Bentley University. He also completed the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s selective Yitro Leadership Program for Assistant Directors.  Ben met his wife, Margo, at Tevya, and they both look forward to spending their summers on the shores of Lake Potanipo, shaping the next generation of Jewish leaders.

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Efraim Yudewitz, Director, Camp Tel Noar

Efraim (pronounced F-ryam), Director of Camp Tel Noar, is an experienced and professional Jewish educator with a deep background in camping and experiential education. He comes to us from Gann Academy, the independent Jewish high school, as Associate Director of Experiential Education and then as Co-Director of Admissions. He has served on the faculty of the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s Cornerstone Fellowship program – passionate about sports, he engaged camp counselors in designing Jewish sports programming, among other projects – and of the Prozdor Hebrew High School of Hebrew College. Efraim holds a BA from Rutgers University. He grew up as a counselor and then staff member at a Jewish camp, which is also where he met his wife.

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Lara Walklet, Director of Dor L’ Dor, our Israel leadership programs

Lara is an experienced educator who joined The Cohen Camps from the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco where she served as Program Coordinator and Education Manager of the San Francisco Diller Teen Fellows. She previously taught Hebrew and Judaic Studies at a Jewish day school. Lara has extensive experience in Israel, where she lived on a kibbutz as well as earned her Masters degree in Jewish Education from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She also holds a B.A. in Jewish Studies from McGill University.

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Barbara Stevens, Director of Development

An alum of Camp Tevya 1972-84, Barbara helps our families, alumni and donors connect with each other, to fantastic projects and programs, and to a wide range of ways to support the Camps’ communities and spirit. She has worked in entertainment (tour manager of KC & The Sunshine Band for 10 years!) and for NBA/NFL teams, and she rejoined The Cohen Camps in late 2013. “I made lifelong friends at Tevya,” Barbara notes. “Not high school or college. CAMP! I am so glad to be back and I love catching up with Cohen Camps’ friends and families from all years.”

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