Congregation Ohav Shalom

Building Community Celebrating Tradition

113 New Krumkill Road, Albany, NY 12208 / (518) 489-4706 / Email Us /

Board of Trustees

Board of Trustees

Ohav Shalom is fortunate to have a dedicated Board of Trustees who are deeply committed to its mission and purpose. Their leadership, combined with the efforts of all our volunteers and our membership involvement, makes Ohav the special place it is.

Gregg Fox, President

President, Chairperson of the Finance Committee

Gregg has taken the plunge to move from the past Treasurer at Ohav Shalom to the Synagogue President.  He is only in his second year as President and is extremely excited to continue to serve Ohav Shalom.  He has been a member of Ohav Shalom his entire life. He and his wife Jennifer both grew up at Ohav.  Gregg and Jennifer have a 12 and a half year-old son who will become Bar Mitzvah in October of 2022.  In addition to his work at the shul, Gregg is a high school special education teacher in the Averill Park Schools. Gregg is a tireless advocate for children, and people who are in need.  He has chaired numerous committees and programs at Ohav Shalom. In 2018 he was instrumental in securing funding for the synagogue’s new playground and overseeing its installation.  Gregg can be regularly seen greeting at the front of the Shul on Shabbat as he loves the opportunity to welcome and meet all of the regulars and guests.  He has been a mentor for many staff and congregants in the shul.  Gregg’s major goal is to increase congregant involvement in committees, donations, and overall synagogue life.” 


Ed Jacobs, M.D. , Safety and Security

Chairperson of the Life & Legacy and Safety & Security Committees

Ed is a retired OB-GYN physician. He and his wife Laura have been members of Ohav Shalom for more than 40 years. Both of their daughters, Lisa and Tami, celebrated their b’nai mitzvah at Ohav. Ed is committed to optimizing the safety and security of our synagogue and has overseen many enhancements during 2017-18. He has also spearheaded the Life & Legacy planned giving program. He’s extremely grateful to its founding members who are helping to ensure Ohav’s future is sound. Ed also serves on the Federation Board of Governors and the boards of The Daughters of Sarah Nursing Home and the Maimonides Hebrew Day School.

Dana Mandel, Co- Treasurer


My wife, Linda, and I moved to the Albany area in 2020 after living in the Hamlet of King Ferry near Ithaca, NY.  We were active members of Temple Beth-El in Ithaca for over 30 years.  This will be my first experience as the treasurer of a Shul.  I have served on a number of other not-for-profit boards in the past, many as their treasurer, including the: Cayuga County Cancer Services Program, Southern Cayuga Anne Frank Tree Project, Southern Cayuga Instant Aid, Cayuga County Community Health Network, Cayuga County Home Health Agency Advisory Board, Cayuga/Seneca Community Action Agency Head Start Advisory Board, King Ferry Food Pantry

In addition to my experience as a treasurer, I was also the founder and President of Lifespan Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, and Speech and Language Pathology Services from 1988 until 2019.  Beginning as a solo practitioner in the profession of physical therapy, I grew the practice to a total of 40 therapists and support staff. 

Reed Ference, Co Treasurer


Reed Ference

Shari Piper, Secretary

Secretary, Chairperson of Lifelong Learning

Over the years Shari has served on many Ohav committees. She has been Chair of the Youth Commission and has spent countless hours working with youth, human resources, fundraising, programs and other activities at the synagogue. While Ohav is very important to Shari, she is perhaps best known for founding the Annual Lustgarten Foundation Albany Capital District Walk for Pancreatic Cancer Research in 2004 with her husband Neil. Shari is credited with helping the Walk to evolve into a kid and pet-friendly social event with music from local bands, food, kids’ activities like face painting and games. It is now seen as a celebration of life where everyone can feel comfortable.

Judith Avner, Esq., Immediate Past President

Immediate Past President, Co-Chairperson of the Lifelong Learning/Program Committee

Judy served two terms as President of the Board of Trustees at Ohav Shalom. She has served as a teacher in the Talmud Torah and on numerous other committees over the years she has been involved at Ohav. She has also volunteered in the Ohav Shalom Gift Shop, been an active participant on the Yad Yonatan and Inclusion committees. An attorney by training, she has served as Director of the NYS Division for Women, Executive Director of the Brain Injury Association of NYS, and Jewish Family Services of Northeastern New York. Judy and her husband Steve are Disney fans, and together with their daughters Amanda and Sara, have run in Disney races on both coasts.

Prof. Jim Hendler, 1st Vice President

First Vice President,

Wendy Kay Bates

Religious Life Committee

Wendy has been a member of Ohav Shalom since childhood. Her parents were very active members – – and her father served as its attorney and her mother served as Sisterhood president for many years. She was married in the synagogue in 1970 and joined the shul as a married couple in 1979. Her children attended synagogue weekly and the family enjoyed a wonderful close-knit group of friends. She joined the board in the 1980s, and then left the board to become executive director in the mid 90’s. She returned to the board after resigning as executive director in the early 2000’s and has served ever since. She is an active member. She has co-chaired the Festival of Jewish culture; organized the annual Thacher Park Dinner; became a bat mitzvah as an adult; cooked Shabbat dinners with friends; produced the Yizkor Book for a period of time; co-chaired several galas; baked with the Kiddusha Mamas and Papas; designed and led the Step by Step program; co-chaired the Sisterhood. She currently serves on the Religious Life Committee and is a member of the Chevre Kadisha, performing tahara.

Joshua Cantor Stone

Joshua Cantor-Stone comes from a family that is deeply committed to synagogue and Jewish communal life in Texas. He is a graduate of Yale and most recently received his Master of Public Administration from the University at Albany. Joshua is a Project Manager for the Jahnel Group, a software development company in Schenectady. He and his wife Sarah, a doctoral student in the University of Albany’s Department of Atmospheric Sciences, live in the City of Albany. Joshua recently completed the YESOD program, which is the Jewish Federation’s leadership development program.

Antoinette Deitcher

Coordinator of the Social Action Committee

Antoinette Deitcher joined the Board of Trustees in 2017 and is the Chair of the Social Action Committee. She does outreach and education for the New York State Department of Health’s Center for Environmental Health. Aviva, as she is known to friends and family, is mom to a young toddler. A leader of Ohav Shalom’s Center Square Minyan, she can be seen throughout the Albany Jewish community – – at Ohav on Shabbat, at Jewish Federation and Nextdor events – – learning, schmoozing, eating, cooking, playing with babies, or kvelling about a craft project she’s working on. Aviva has been recognized by the Jewish Multiracial Network (JMN) for Woman’s History Month and presented a craft workshop on Afro-Judaic art at the May 2017 JMN retreat

Marci Galinkin

Marci Galinkin moved to Albany in 1992 “for a year” and has not left.  Ohav Shalom is a large part of why Marci and her husband Stephen Levy chose to stay in the area. The warmth, vibrancy and accessibility for all made it a very attractive “second home.”  They were married on the bimah in 1993, and still can be found in shul regularly, and often on the bimah reading torah and leading the davening.  Ohav soon became their three children’s second home as well, where each in turn went through the nursery school and became a bar/ bat mitzvah.  Marci’s professional career as a Jewish educator in the area, first for Jewish Family Services, then United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism,  Jewish Federation and Hebrew Academy intertwines with her volunteer life at Ohav Shalom.  Marci has coordinated the B’nai Mitzvah dvar torah tutoring since 1994, and has served on the Education, Nursery School, and Religious Life committees and chaired the Youth Committee.  She is delighted to be able to serve on the Board of Trustees and help her “second home” continue to grow into the future.

Lev Ginsburg, Esq. 2nd Vice President

Lev is Senior Director of Government Affairs at The Business Council of NYS. Prior to that he was an attorney with New York’s Governor’s Office of Regulatory Reform and a staff member for U.S. Senator Arlen Specter in Washington. Lev sits on the New York State of Health Advisory Committee, the New York Workers’ Compensation Board’s Medical Advisory Committee, Advisory Committee on Independent Medical Examinations and the Board of Governors for the New York Compensation Insurance Rating Board.  He also serves on the Advisory Board for New York’s Area Health Education Centers, the Board of Directors of The Jewish Federation of NENY, the Board of Directors for the Capital District Jewish Holocaust Memorial and recently served on the Board of JNF and B’Yachad, where he served a term as President.  Lev received his J.D. from Yeshiva University’s Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and his B.A. in history from the University of Buffalo. When not busy with all of the above, he enjoys attending Shabbat services at Ohav, skipping Shabbat services at Ohav to ski or kayak with his wife Jane and their two teenaged kids and listening to the Grateful Dead.

Melanie Grossman

Mrs. Melanie Grossman received her B.S. in Business from The University of Rhode Island in 2002 and Juris Doctorate from The University at Buffalo School of Law in 2005. Melanie currently serves as the Associate Director of Job Skills with Governor’s Office of Employee Relations.  She is an active member of her community and proudly serves on the Board of the Capital Region chapter for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and Capital Region Gilda’s Club/Hope Club – American Cancer Society. She resides with her family in Delmar, New York.

Sarah Krassenbaum Baker

Sarah Krassenbaum Baker

David Levine, D.D.S.

Chairperson of the Religious Life Committee

David Levine is Chairperson of the Religious Life Committee. He is credited with leading the search for our beloved High Holy Days Cantor. David, who is a general dentist with nearly 40 years of experience, has been a member of Ohav Shalom since 1978 and has served on the Board of Trustees almost consecutively since 1979. He is on the Yahrzeit Board Committee and is past Chairperson of the College Outreach Committee. David is also a member and past President of the Va’ad HaKashruth of the Capital District. He’s is a family man and loves spending time with his children and grandchildren.

Sharon Lozman

Chairperson of the House and Grounds Committee

Sharon Lozman is the Chairperson of Ohav Shalom’s House and Grounds Committee, and lovingly cares for the building and grounds of the shul like it was her own home. She has a background in both academia and real estate. She taught elementary school for several years, and is the former Principal of the Lower School of the Albany Academy for Girls. Sharon also owned and managed an apartment complex and office building for 25 years. She grew up in a family that developed and constructed real estate, and consequently learned a great deal about construction. Hence her expertise in house and grounds. Sharon has been a member of the Board of Trustees since 2001.

Chana McIntyre

Originally from Manhattan, Chana found her chosen family at Ohav Shalom. After relocating to the Albany area in 2014, Chana joined with her husband, Scott Mcintyre.

Chana is the mother of two boys and step-mother to three young adults. Chana and Scott live in Colonie with their young sons, Asher and Meyer.

Chana is a graduate of University of Colorado @ Boulder, where she majored in sociology.  Chana has held multiple sales leadership roles in the adult beverage industry for 18+ years and now works in sales for an equity and Title IX firm, Grand River Solutions, which serves universities and colleges across the US.

Chana serves on the board of directors for the Daughters of Sarah Foundation, as well as President of Athletic Haven, a non-profit her husband founded in 2016 supporting underserved youth in the Capital region.

She looks forward to serving the Ohav community as a member of the board.

Linda Mandel

Linda and her husband, Dana, retired to the Albany area in May of 2020. They spent 33 years in the Finger Lakes Region of NY, raising their 3 children and attending Temple Beth El in Ithaca.

Linda is a retired teacher, spending most of her years in special education and more recently, teaching religious school at Temple Beth El. She spends as much time as she can with her grandchildren and enjoys camping and trips to New York City.

She is honored to take a place on the board and looks forward to many years of involvement at Ohav Shalom.

David Morrison

David Morrison joined the Ohav Shalom Board of Trustees in 2022 after joining Ohav Shalom in 2021.  David is a lifelong Capital District resident, born and raised in Clifton Park.  He is an alumni of the Hebrew Academy of the Capital District, and grew up attending many services and friends Bar Mitzvahs at Ohav Shalom, though his family were members of Congregation Beth Shalom.  When David and his wife, Robyn, moved to Albany from Saratoga in 2020, joining the community at Congregation Ohav Shalom was one of their priorities.  They have two young children and look forward to raising them as part of the Ohav community.  David is a dentist with an office in Clifton Park, having received his dental education at University at Buffalo School of Dental Medicine, and undergraduate education at Emory University.  Prior to joining the Ohav Board, he has been very active both locally and nationally with Jewish Federation of North America.

Rachel Pearlman, Esq.

A Capital District native who lived in Hoboken, NJ for over a decade, Rachel Leah Pearlman and her family became members of Ohav Shalom around 2011 when they moved from Hoboken to Albany.  At that time, the family was most active in Ohav’s children’s programming, and has fond memories of candle lighting in pajamas on Chanukah.  Her kids later attended B’Yachad and Rachel served on the Board, representing Ohav Shalom, and then, the kids attended Hebrew Academy of the Capital District for middle school.  Rachel herself is a graduate of HACD.

Rachel’s oldest son becoming a Bar Mitzvah was an impetus for Rachel to involve herself in leading services at Ohav.  Many Shabbats she can be found leyning Torah or Haftarah, or davening Shacharit or Musaf.  Rachel was excited to be made the Tfilat HaTal “specialist” by Rabbi Dan.  One of her favorite things about Ohav is that it is so welcoming in allowing members of the community to lead services.

When not at shul, Rachel works as a patent attorney and is a shareholder at Heslin Rothenberg Farley & Mesiti P.C.  Rachel can often be found on youth soccer fields cheering on various teams from the Albany Soccer Club either as a coach or as a supportive parent.  Rachel is also a Board Member of the Albany Soccer Club.  Rachel occasionally appears on local community theater stages.  Rachel lives in Albany with her husband, Seth, and her three children.


Laurie Cohn Sasson

Laurie has lived in Albany since 1990.  She studied at SUNY Albany for both her undergraduate and graduate degrees.  She has been an ESL/ENL in the Albany City Schools since 1995 working with refugee and immigrant children.  Laurie and her family joined Ohav Shalom in 2012  because of its warm and welcoming environment for young families.  She was most impressed with how one Rabbi did story time with the children and the other with the adults (Dvar torah) and how the rabbis wash the children’s hands at the end of services.   Her maternal grandparents were active members of the Albany Jewish community.

Laurie currently lives with her two children, Ya’ir and Layla in the house next to the one her mother grew up in.


Ana Sobel

Ana is originally from Maryland and attended the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School in Rockville. She obtained an undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland, College Park and completed doctoral studies in clinical psychology at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County. Currently Ana is  a licensed clinical psychologist providing individual therapy to adults since 2005.

Ana and husband, George Bizer,  moved to Albany from Illinois in 2005 and became members of Ohav Shalom shortly thereafter. Their two children attended Ohav Shalom preschool, Hebrew Academy, and the Robert C. Parker School. Her daughter is now a junior at Tech Valley High School and her son is a freshman at Albany High School. Ana’s community involvement has included co-chairing a Head of School search for the Hebrew Academy and serving on the Women’s Philanthropy Board of the Jewish Federation as well as on the Ohav Shalom Membership Committee. 

Jessica Tannenbaum Rosen

Jessica Tannenbaum-Rosen has 16 years of experience with General Electric in a variety of Finance roles across the Energy sector (Gas Power, Wind Energy, Solar Power) and currently serves as the Executive Finance Systems Leader for the Gas Power division. She has previously held roles with increasing responsibility in the areas of Financial Planning and Analysis, Financial Project Management and Acquisitions/Dispositions. She also manages the GE Power finance leadership development program, an early career program mentoring 40 participants per year. Jessica earned her Bachelor’s degree in Finance and International Business from Penn State University and her MBA from Union College. Jessica and her husband Adam stay very busy raising their 3 daughters.

Susan Ungerman

Susan Ungerman is Owner and President of Ungerman Electric, which has been providing residential and commercial services to the Capital Region for more than 50 years. Ungerman Electric is a Certified Woman Owned Business (WBE) that was started by her father, Herm Ungerman. Ungerman Electric is actively involved in the Capital Region community, providing philanthropic support for and participation in several organizations in addition to Ohav Shalom. She recently led the company to receive the Torch Award for Ethics from the Better Business Bureau, which is the highest recognition given to area businesses by BBB. Susan grew up in Ohav Shalom and is an active member of the Board of Trustees.

Jay Worona, Esq.

Jay Worona is Deputy Executive Director and General Counsel for the New York State School Boards Association. Jay served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the National Council of School Attorneys (COSA) in 2007. He has been honored by his peers who have appointed him as a Fellow of the New York State Bar Association. He also serves as an adjunct professor at the School of Educational Administration and Policy Studies at the State University of New York at Albany. Jay has updated the Bylaws of Ohav Shalom and has served on various committees. He grew up in Poughkeepsie. He and his wife Sandi are long-standing members of Ohav Shalom, and his children were b’nai mitzvah at our shul. Jay is a proud father and grandfather.

Margery Diamond Zucker

Margery Diamond Zucker has attended services regularly since her college days and has been a member of Ohav Shalom for nearly 40 years. Her sons celebrated bar-mitzvah at our shul, and one was married on our bimah. Following retirement from her career in educational administration, she has been able to participate on the Ohav Shalom Board of Trustees where she has served as co-chair. She has been involved with various committees including the Torah Writing Campaign Committee and the Coffee Connections Committee. She has participated on Board of Trustees since 2011. For more than 25 years, she has regularly read Torah, Haftarah, and Megillot.