Rabbi Sarah is a dynamic Jewish community leader with educational leadership and program experience, including a strong track record building Ramah Outdoor Adventure. In her role as Director, Rabbi Sarah is shaping our camp’s educational and programmatic vision and partnering with local rabbis and leaders to make Ramah in Northern California a thriving and nurturing Jewish community for youth. Rabbi Sarah was ordained as a rabbi with dual Masters degrees in Education and Rabbinic Studies from American Jewish University in May of 2016. Rabbi Sarah is passionate about community transformation through Jewish educational experiences.
Originally from Seattle, Rabbi Sarah attended Stanford University, where she received a B.A. in Biology with studies in Environmental Health and Marine Biology. After college, Rabbi Sarah completed the Day School Leadership through Teaching (DeLeT) fellowship, and lived in the San Francisco Bay Area for six years, teaching at Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School and Brandeis Hillel Day School in San Francisco. She also has an impressive athletic background, having competed in IRONMAN competitions and other ultra-endurance events as an accomplished swimmer, runner, and cyclist. Rabbi Sarah currently lives in Foster City with her husband Nate and daughter Lielle.
As a Colorado native, Nate is passionate about the outdoors and enjoys backpacking, cycling, rock climbing, mountaineering, and scuba diving. However, when he cannot get out into nature, Nate also enjoys technology and website development. Growing up, Nate attended a variety of Jewish summer camps including Camp Ramah in Wisconsin, and after college he worked at Ramah in the Rockies,helping to co-create JOLI, the Jewish Outdoor Leadership Institute and their wilderness survival program.
Nate has created leadership programs for experiential educational outfits, focusing on skill building and self-development, run logistics for summer camps, developed marketing plans for educational institutions and ran operations for outdoor youth organizations. He has earned a Masters in Instructional Leadership and an EdD in Educational Leadership and Change.
Alli considers herself to be a camp person through and through. Originally from New Jersey, she grew up attending Jewish summer camp and working at camp for many years. After thirteen years of day school education, she attended Muhlenberg College where she received a B.A. in Psychology and Jewish Studies. Alli then went on to pursue her masters in Jewish Educational Leadership from the Davidson School at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, where she currently lives. During her Junior year study abroad experience in Israel, Alli heard about Ramah Galim and was excited about the opportunity to embark on a new adventure to the beautiful shores of Monterey Bay. She has been spending her summers immersed in this incredible community ever since, first as a counselor and then as a Rosh Edah.
Alli is now thrilled to be a member of the Ramah Galim team as the Assistant Director. Passionate about the role that Jewish summer camp plays in Jewish education, Alli is looking forward to continuing to grow our community through fun and dynamic programming and developing relationships with our campers, staff and families. She can’t wait for many more fun filled summers on our beach filled with laughter, memories, ruach and lots of rikud!
Ari Friedman is excited to be a member of the Ramah Galim family in Northern California after spending more than 16 years in the Ramah community as a camper and staff member. Ari grew up in New York, attending Camp Ramah in the Berkshires as a camper and Camp Ramah in Nyack as a staff member. Ari attended the Nativ College Leadership Program in Israel and went on to study Sociology at SUNY Oneonta in upstate New York. While studying, he had the opportunity to participate in the Nachshon Project in Jerusalem. Upon his return from Israel, Ari brought a passion for Israel education and working with kids to Ramah Galim as a counselor and lifeguard. Ari now enjoys spending his summers on the beautiful beach of the Monterey Bay where he continues to make lasting memories. He is looking forward to contributing to the long-term success of Ramah Galim.
Elissa has devoted more than 30 years to the non-profit world, addressing issues of Jewish identity, Jewish renewal, trauma, poverty, education, equity, inclusion for individuals with disabilities, and access to critical social services. During her career, she has helped to raise millions of dollars for social justice. Elissa’s communications and development clients have included several Israel-based organizations, including the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (Jerusalem office), the Center for Women’s Justice, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel, the Society for the Advancement of Education, the Beit Ruth Educational & Therapeutic Village, and Hadassah Academic College.
Closer to home, Elissa spent 10 years as the Communications Director and then Assistant Director of the Jewish Federation of the Sacramento Region where she spearheaded the return of Jewish Family Services in the Sacramento Region and singlehandedly produced the Jewish community’s monthly newspaper. Elissa is also a freelance journalist, whose work has appeared in the J (Jewish News of Northern California), the Times of Israel, the Forward, and the Jerusalem Post. Significantly, Elissa is a product of Jewish camp, having attended the same New York-based camp for 11 years. She earned a B.A. in Psychology and an M.S. in Communications, and is the proud ima to twin daughters (one of whom was a founding Ramah Galim staff member!).