Professional Staff

Executive

Rabbi Marla J. Feldman, Executive Director (mfeldman@wrj.org, 212.650.4050), is a Reform rabbi, lawyer, and certified fundraiser, and has been with WRJ since January 2012. Previously, she was the URJ Director of Development and Director of the Commission on Social Action of Reform Judaism. She has served on the boards of many non-profits dedicated to social justice and has led or participated in social action missions throughout North America, Israel, Africa, and elsewhere around the world.

 

Administration & Operations

Robin Cohen, MBA, Manager of Operations (rcohen@wrj.org, 212.650.4056), oversees the day-to-day operations and board management for WRJ. She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications and a Master’s degree in Business Administration. Robin is a former synagogue executive director and development director within the reform movement and served as the interim executive director for WRJ in 2011. While she was raised in South Florida, Robin has also lived in Atlanta, GA and Philadelphia, PA. She loves cooking and baking, teaching others about essential oils, eating Mint Chocolate Chip ice cream and is a very proud Penn State Mom. 

Bayley Swain, Administrative Assistant (bswain@wrj.org, 212.650.4065), holds a bachelor’s degree in European History from Smith College and a master’s degree in Religion & Ethics from Yale. She is enormously fond of strong coffee, public radio and almost anything written by Grace Paley.

Marissa Besner, Administrative Assistant (mbesner@wrj.org, 212.650.4062), assists WRJ staff and members in maintaining efficient operational, communications, and development initiatives.  She has a very diverse background, having studied classical opera at The Juilliard School of Music, and received her BA in Media and Communications.  A born and bred New Yorker, Marissa enjoys live music, stand-up comedy, clean laundry scent, board sports, antiquing, collecting oddities, and taking naps on the subway but never missing her stop.  

 

Advocacy

Ally Karpel, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism Eisendrath Legislative Assistant (akarpel@rac.org, 202.387.2800), works out of the Religious Action Center in Washington, D.C. Her portfolio includes reproductive rights, disability rights, gender-based violence, pay equity, economic justice, and labor issues. She is a recent graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, where she studied Speech-Language Pathology and Social Work and received an interdisciplinary certificate in Intervention and Vulnerable Children. Ally was deeply engaged in social justice work duher her time in college, which included co-founding and facilitating the Bella Abzug Social Justice Fellowship, serving as president of the University Interfaith Council, and Participating in the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion Founders’ Fellowship.

Alyson Malinger, Advocacy & Communications Associate (amalinger@wrj.org, 212.650.4057) assists with both advocacy and communications efforts for the WRJ.  She works closely on WRJ’s social justice efforts, as well as the Weekly Digest and the WRJ blog. Alyson grew up in Aberdeen, NJ. She is a May 2017 graduate from Indiana University with degrees in journalism and political and civic engagement. Aly is obsessed with Thai food, Seville, Spain and anything related to Sara Bareilles. 

 

Marketing & Communications

Megan Friedlander, Manager of Marketing & Communications (mfriedlander@wrj.org, 212.650.4066), oversees and coordinates all internal and external marketing and communications for the organization. A Kansas native, she recently moved to New York City after beginning her career in Washington, D.C. In her spare time, she enjoys exploring her new city with her husband, Robb and dog, KayCee.

Alyson Malinger, Advocacy & Communications Associate (amalinger@wrj.org, 212.650.4057) - biography listed under Advocacy

 

Meetings & Conventions

Amanda Feldman, Manager of Meetings & Conventions (afeldman@wrj.org, 212.650.4054), oversees planning and logistics for the WRJ Fried Leadership Conference as well as other conferences, board and committee meetings, and additional programs. A lover of travel, Amanda enjoys being able to attend WRJ events in different locations. She is also a member of the Garden City Jewish Center Sisterhood in Garden City, NY with her mom, an avid reader and cook who loves spending time with friends and family, and a fan of the New York Rangers.

 

Philanthropy

Michelle W. Malkin, MAJNM, MPA, Manager of Philanthropy (mwmalkin@wrj.org, 212.650.4072), oversees the organization’s fundraising efforts, including the YES Fund & Lifeline Endowment and Annual Campaign. Born and raised in Los Angeles, Michelle completed her graduate work in 2014 and now lives in New Jersey with her husband Barak and their dog Serenity and cat Jasper. 

Mallory Kahn-Johnston, Philanthropy Associate (mkahn-johnston@wrj.org, 212.650.4058), assists in fundraising efforts, including annual appeals, Chai Society, Ner Tamid and Board Giving. She recently returned from living in Israel where she worked for the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism. She grew up in Connecticut and was active in NFTY Northeast and attended URJ Eisner Camp. She received her BA in International Studies from Washington College and her MA in Middle Eastern Studies from Ben Gurion University of the Negev. She enjoys spending time with friends and family, including her husband Martin and three Israeli rescue cats Namair, Shai and Dalet. 

 

Programs & Affiliate Services

Heather Lorgeree, Manager of Programs & Affiliate Services (hlorgeree@wrj.org, 212.650.4063), handles support for all potential, new, and current affiliates and serves as the staff liaison for the WRJ Districts. Heather is an active member of Temple Beth Or Sisterhood in Washington Township, NJ, where she was proud to be honored as a WRJ Unsung Heroine and most recently, a Woman of Valor. Heather enjoys baking cakes and making ice cream and is also an avid Chicago sports fan; she supports all of the teams, but the White Sox are her favorite. 

Micaela Sheinhait, Program Associate (msheinhait@wrj.org, 212.650.4060), assists with program and affiliate services, including Chai Mitzvah Project, Lilith Salons, and other sisterhood support. She completed her M.A. in Nonprofit Management and Leadership from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and moved to New York about a year ago. She grew up in small town New Hampshire, but is loving adjusting to city life here in New York.