Michelle Brode is a social worker, mom, and enthusiast of Jewish overnight camp. Michelle grew up in the Midwest, and attended Goldman Union Camp Institute in Zionsville, IN, and Olin Sang Ruby Union Institute in Oconomowoc, WI. From her experiences at these camps, Michelle became a firm believer in the magic of Jewish overnight camp.
Michelle and her husband, David Kroopkin, live in Issaquah, WA with their daughters Abby (15) and Julia (12), both longtime Kalsman campers. Professionally, Michelle works for Youth Eastside Services, a community mental health agency based in Bellevue, WA, and provides mental health counseling, substance abuse prevention/intervention, and suicide risk assessments in the Lake Washington School District.
Michelle’s volunteer experience spans from working with families living with AIDS in Boston, to supporting the Student Group on Race Relations in Cleveland, to serving on the Board of Bet Alef Meditative Synagogue in Seattle, and providing crisis counseling on Crisis Text Line, a nation-wise text-based crisis service. Michelle is excited to join the Camp Kalsman Commission and support the mission of this wonderful organization.
Janice Brumer grew up attending Jewish summer camp, including a summer at URJ Camp Swig and a summer at URJ Kutz Camp. Janice is a member of Temple B’nai Torah in Bellevue, WA, is a past Board member and currently serves on its Advisory Council and Youth Engagement Committee. She is a member of the North American Board of Trustees of the Union for Reform Judaism and the URJ North American Camp Board.
Janice was the inaugural Chair of the URJ Camp Kalsman Commission, has served as Development Chair and currently serves as the Chair of the Engagement Committee. In 2017, Janice was awarded the Outstanding Board Leadership Award by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation at their annual JCamp 180 conference, for her work with Camp Kalsman. In addition, Janice is the co-president of the Donnez Nous Chapter of City of Hope, a former Board member and Development Chair of the Jewish Day School of Metropolitan Seattle, and is a leader of Camp Kesher, an annual multi-generational family camp for Pacific Northwest Area Jews.
Janice is an avid reader, Mahjongg player and camper at heart. She is the wife of Marshall Brumer, and proud mother of three girls, Megan (a Rabbinical/Jewish Education student at HUC-JIR), Jessica (a senior at the University of Washington), and Kayla (a freshman at Brandeis University). All three girls are long time campers and staff members at Camp Kalsman.
Dan Cory grew up in Chapel Hill, NC. Although Jewish, he went to Quaker summer camp, because that’s where the kids in the neighborhood went. Dan and his wife Julia Bacharach loved camp and are pleased to send their children Miriam (17) and Ariana (14) to Kalsman. This summer, Miriam will be joining other Kalsman campers for four weeks in Israel. The family lives in the Green Lake neighborhood of Seattle.
Dan is a technical advisor at Tableau Software where helps people see and understand their data through charts and maps. He can’t look at data without graphing it. Before Tableau, he worked at Microsoft for 14 years.
Dan is the immediate past chair of Temple Beth Am’s religious school committee. He is also Seattle coordinator for MATHCOUNTS, a middle school math competition. He also makes homemade bread, usually challah and chocolate babka.
Alisa lives in Vancouver, BC with her husband, Chris and their two children, Paloma (15) and Xander (13). She grew up in a Conservative Jewish family in Vancouver, BC, spending summers at Camp Hatikvah and her teen years as a USY board member. After graduating from the University of British Columbia, Alisa moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in film. She worked in marketing and publicity at The Walt Disney Studios for five years. Alisa went on to be an Associate Producer on feature film trailers and motion graphics for an advertising agency. Some of her clients included Paramount Pictures, Warner Bros., Sony Pictures Entertainment, The Walt Disney Studios, Universal Studios and MTV Films.
Alisa moved back to Vancouver in 2004 with her husband and daughter, Paloma. They welcomed Xander into their family shortly after the move. As a family, they joined Temple Sholom. Alisa has been active in the community as a past “Young Leadership Division” co-chair for the Jewish Federation of Vancouver campaign. She was on the Camp Hatikvah board of directors for two years and has taken on countless volunteer positions at Vancouver Talmud Torah day school. She spent 4 years on the Little Mountain Baseball Little League board of directors. Alisa currently works for the Vancouver School Board and as a personal Uber driver for her two teenagers.
Alisa joined the Camp Kalsman Commission in 2015. Her kids have attended Camp Kalsman since 2014 and are both active members of NFTY. Last summer Alisa was the Camp Mom at Kalsman for session Bet. She had the best summer EVER at camp!!!
Rabbi David Fine has lived in the Pacific Northwest since moving here from Chicago in 1993. He grew up in a home immersed in Reform Judaism. As a leader in his youth group (Temple Israel in Detroit) he received a scholarship to Kutz Camp. The rest is history.
Rabbi Fine, ordained from HUC-JIR (Cincinnati) in 1989, served as a congregational rabbi at Congregation B’nai Jehoshua Beth Elohim in Glenview/Northbrook, IL (1,000 households) and then Temple Beth Or in Everett, WA (130 households). He is an honorary lifetime member of NFTY-Chicago, having been given that honor after a successful run as the Rabbinic Advisor. In addition, he was the Rabbinic Advisor for NFTY Northwest during the 1990’s.
Rabbi Fine began working for the Union for Reform Judaism in 1996 and has served in numerous capacities, beginning with regional work and now continuing in Consulting and Transition Management with Reform congregations across North America. He has remained involved with Camp Kalsman since his role as the point person of the core team bringing Camp Kalsman to fruition, having visited more than 30 sites until the current site outside of Arlington, WA was found to be our best match.
Rabbi Fine and his wife Beth have two children. Their daughter Naomi lives in Boston, working to further educational access for all. Their son Avi, a former Kalsman Unit Head, will be ordained as a rabbi in May of 2019. He is engaged to Erin Goldstrom. In the spirit of camp, their outdoor wedding will take place Memorial Day weekend.
Rabbi Allison Flash currently serves as the Assistant Director of Education at Temple Beth Am in Seattle. Before coming to Temple Beth Am in 2007, she served as Associate Rabbi at The Temple, Congregation Ohabai Sholom, in Nashville, TN.
In addition to working as a rabbi-educator, Rabbi Allison serves as the Chair of the Faculty Commission and is actively involved in working toward educational equity in the Washington State public schools and in supporting numerous non-profit organizations. She has a deep love of Reform Judaism and knows first-hand the impact that Jewish camping can have on people. Rabbi Allison and her husband, Ed, are the proud parents of three children who have all grown up at Camp Kalsman. Sara will serve as the waterfront supervisor this summer, Adam will be a song leader, and Daniel will attend his last summer as a camper. Camp Kalsman is home away from home for her entire family.
Amy grew up in a Conservative Jewish family and attended Jewish day camp as a child. She and her husband Greg live with their son in Bellevue. They have been members of Temple B’nai Torah for 10 years, where Greg is currently President. Amy is a support engineer working in cyber security. She has served in the local PTSA as Treasurer and has served on multiple committees and task forces at Temple B’nai Torah.
Their son Ari is currently in high school. He has been attending Camp Kalsman since fourth grade and 6 Points Sports Academy since sixth grade. He will be participating in NFTY in Israel in 2019.
Elizabeth and her husband, Mario, reside in Bellevue, WA. She grew up outside of Boston but has now lived in Washington for over 25 years. They have three kids who all attended Camp Kalsman, the oldest is now a counselor. They have one graduating from college this year, one graduating from High School, and the youngest is getting her driver’s license. Elizabeth and her husband have been members at Temple De Hirsch Sinai for 15 years. Elizabeth has been a technical writer/graphic designer and worked in a development office with experience in fundraising; she also has been responsible for training and communications.
Elizabeth is an active volunteer with an extensive volunteer resume. At her synagogue, she has been Chair of the Preschool Committee, a member of the newsletter committee, Board member, Board Secretary and Vice President. She is also a member of the North American Board. In addition, she is active in WRJ and created a PNW Sisterhood Retreat, now in its third year. In the greater Jewish community, she is the Secretary for the URJ Camp Kalsman Commission and is on the planning committee for a Jewish family retreat weekend, called Camp Kesher.
Jeff grew up in a Conservative Jewish family in Memphis, Tennessee, where his family has been a pillar of the Jewish community with his great-grandfather being the moyel and shochet (butcher) for the Jewish community and his grandparents running a kosher restaurant. Summers were spent at the local JCC and in Jewish day and overnight camps while social life in high school was built around BBYO.
After college at Michigan (Go Blue!) he drove around the country and felt most at home in Seattle and so settled here after Internal Medicine residency at University of Washington. He met his wife Sandy Widlan, originally from Pittsburgh, while in Seattle and became friends with her when she moved to West Seattle. They have two boys Kody (12) and Theo (14) who have both attended Kalsman. Kody enjoys camp so much that he is opting to go to camp instead of a trip to Israel. They are members of Kol HaNeshamah.
Jocelyn and her husband Scott live in Madison Park, Seattle. They have two children, Arielle, a sophomore at Harvey Mudd College, and Jordan, a senior at Seattle Academy. They lived on the Eastside (Sammamish and Bellevue) for 24 years and moved to Seattle last year. Jocelyn was born in Brooklyn, NY and grew up in Northbrook, IL, a suburb of Chicago. She attended religion school and had her Bat Mitzvah at B’nai Joshua Beth Eloheim. She graduated from University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana and is a CPA, working at Ernst & Young and Clark Nuber before having children.
They are members of Temple De Hirsch Sinai. Both children attended Camp Kalsman for many years and Arielle went to Israel with NFTY.
Jocelyn is a volunteer in the Jewish community. Besides being a Commissioner for Camp Kalsman for the past 12 years, she is a Board Member for the Jewish Federation of Greater Seattle and the co-Treasurer for Temple De Hirsch Sinai Sisterhood.
Born in Tacoma, WA, Joel grew up in Vancouver, Canada while spending summers at Camp Solomon Schechter and Temple Beth El summer camp (Tacoma). He credits these experiences for laying the foundation of his strong Jewish identity.
Often referred to as “The Principal’s Husband,” Joel’s wife, Jen, is Principal of the Religious School at Temple Sholom in Vancouver and visiting faculty at Camp Kalsman. (They met on JDate, in case you’re wondering.) They have three beautiful children: Tova (8), Noah (6), and Mira (4). This year, Noah will join Tova as a Kalsman camper, while Mira will attend Kalsman in the Katan program.
As Vice President of Backun Musical Services, a musical instrument manufacturer, Joel oversees the company’s global sales and marketing channels, while also advising on product design and manufacturing operations in Canada and China. Often recovering from jetlag between overseas travel, he is responsible for some of the most innovative marketing campaigns in the industry, including the company’s dominant social media presence. He also holds a patent for the development of the world’s first carbon fibre and wood fused woodwind instrument.
A recovering classical musician, Joel earned a double undergraduate degree in Music and German/Philosophy from the University of British Columbia, a Master of Music degree from the University of Utah, and an MBA from the University of British Columbia.
When not at work or synagogue, Joel is a bi-weekly platelet donor, two-time NFL Fantasy Football champion, golfer, and pitmaster of the meanest briskets, smoked meat and (beef) ribs. On High Holy Days, Joel can be found chanting Torah at Temple Sholom.
Brooke and her husband Dan live in Issaquah, WA, with their three children, Kailey (10), Preston (9), and Cassidy (3). Brooke attended Washington State University with a degree in Marketing and Communications. Brooke worked in the media and digital marketing space managing a team of consultants across various companies. Since their third addition (Cassidy), Brooke has been running ship at home, teaching art at the school, planning and executing events, and helping with all fundraising efforts at their local elementary school.
Brooke and Dan’s older two children attended Jennifer Rosen Meade for preschool. The last three years (going on year four) both Kailey and Preston have attended Camp Kalsman and can’t wait to go back.
The extended Karr family has been very involved in the Jewish community through starting their own temple in Everett back in 1985 (Brooke’s father-in-law was first president of Temple Beth Or) and have been big supporters of the vision and development of Camp Kalsman. URJ Jewish camp was a significant part of Dan’s and his five siblings’ lives as they all attended Camp Swig and Camp Newman and later served as CIT’s through middle and high school.
Brooke and Dan look forward to being part of the vision and growth of Jewish camp.
Dr. Davia Loren has served as the Medical Director for Camp Kalsman for the past ten years, and now also serves as the Medical Liaison for all URJ Camps and Summer Programs. Dr Loren has helped Camp Kalsman expand the medical team operations into a multi-professional group of nurses, nurse practitioners and physicians. Among her contributions at Camp Kalsman has been development of our transgender inclusion program.
She is an Associate Professor of Pediatrics at the University of Washington where she practices in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit. Her clinical work includes supporting medical students, residents and fellows, and her research focuses on safety quality improvement and communication. She received her medical degree from Rush Medical College in Chicago. Dr Loren has three children: Shira (who has been a camper and counselor), Isaac, and Aviva (who is a current camper).
Eric grew up in a Conservative Jewish family in Newton, Massachusetts and attended Camp Young Judaea in New Hampshire for a number of years. He moved to Seattle in 2000 with his wife Kathleen, and they have been members of Kol HaNeshamah almost since its founding in 2003. Their sons Sam and Ben both attended Kalsman and both served as Youth Group Presidents, and Sam spent the summer between high school and college working at Kalsman as a counselor.
Eric earned a PhD in Ancient History and Mediterranean Archaeology from UC Berkeley (Go Bears!) and has been a Professor of Roman and Greek history at the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma since 2000. He served a term as President of Kol HaNeshamah and has served professional organizations in a number of positions, from founder to secretary-treasurer to steering committees. He currently serves on the URJ North American Board.
The enthusiasm of Elliot’s children for Jewish overnight camp was his driver to become a lay leader for URJ Camp Kalsman. Elliot has been a Kalsman Commission member for seven years, served as chair from 2014-2018, and currently heads the Governance Committee. Elliot is also a member of the Oversight Committee, chair of the Trustees Committee, and member of the North American Board of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ). He continues to volunteer as lay leader at Temple B’nai Torah in Bellevue. Recently he became involved in state and congressional political campaigning and advocacy.
Elliot and his wife Sally have lived in Issaquah for 31 years, after moving from Boston to avoid the snow. Their son, Andrew (31), is Director of Teen Engagement at a Reform synagogue in New York City. Andrew’s wife, Elena, is Director for Marketing and Communications in the Youth Division of the URJ. Their daughter, Amy (28), lives in Seattle and is a business analyst for Amazon.
Elliot retired from Microsoft in 2014, thus enabling to spend more time to volunteer and travel.
Melissa Schapiro is a member of Congregation Beth Israel in Bellingham, WA, where she has lived since 1996. She has been a Realtor for 10 years, and previously was a journalist, working for 20 years as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers in the Southwest and in Bellingham.
Melissa grew up in Los Angeles and Tucson, Ariz., attending Conservative synagogues and 8 years of summer camp at Camp Ramah in Ojai, Calif. This experience informed much of her love and appreciation of Judaism and the importance of summer camp to the future of the Jewish people. She also eagerly looks forward to attending URJ Biennials (2019 will be her fifth), and annual congregational shabbatons at Camp Kalsman.
Melissa and her husband, John, have sent their 4 children – Naomi, 20, Isaac, 18, Raphael, 18, and Shoshana, 18 – to Camp Kalsman every summer since they were old enough to attend. Three of them will continue working as counselors at camp this summer, 2019.
Melissa recently completed 10 years of service on her congregation’s Board of Directors (4 as board secretary), is chair of the congregation’s communications team, and serves as webmaster for the congregation’s website.
This will be Melissa’s fourth year on the camp commission. She loves talking to parents and kids about the magic of summer camp and helping them connect to the community.
A native Seattleite, Brian grew up at a large Reform congregation where his grandfather and father were presidents and where he was president of its TYG. Brian spent many years at a local temple camp and later spent summers at UAHC Camp Swig as a camper, counselor, and staff member. Brian served on the URJ North American Board starting in February 2009, when he became president of the then URJ Pacific Northwest Council, until December 2018.
Brian has served on a variety of youth related committees and commissions at the local, regional and North American levels. Brian and his wife Carol live in Bellevue and attend Temple B’nai Torah where he was president from 1996-1999 and again from 2015-2017. Of their six children, all five who were eligible after Camp Kalsman started, attended camp, and several were on staff both at Camp Kalsman and at other URJ camps.
An attorney by training, Brian left the practice of law and spent almost 16 years at Microsoft on the business side before leaving in 2015. He and Carol can often be found at opening days of Camp Kalsman sessions, assisting with the various checking processes or otherwise assisting where needed.
Julie lives in Seattle, WA with her two children, Morris (11) and Hazel (3). She is a member of Temple Beth Am. She grew up and attended college in Michigan (Go Blue!) and came to Seattle by way of Chicago, New York, and Boston almost fifteen years ago. Julie received her BA in Mathematical Economics from University of Michigan and her MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Julie, a Principal at Point B, is a consultant, author, and speaker on generational dynamics and customer engagement. Her research on generational differences focuses on how different generations influence the market and workplace. Julie helps clients address the challenges of engaging younger generations as both customers and employees. With a focus on customer engagement, she has led retailers through strategic planning as well as ecommerce, loyalty, and digital initiatives.
Julie has been involved with Jewish camping since she was child as a camper at Tamarack (Michigan), OSRUI, Kutz (where she also worked as a lifeguard and RA), and a participant in NFTY in Israel.
As part of her broader community involvement, she served as the Director of Technology for Queen Anne Elementary school and played a key role in the Jewish Federation’s Greater Seattle Community Study establishing the size and breadth of the Jewish community, given Seattle’s unprecedented growth over the last 20 years.
Bob and his wife Anna reside in Portland, Oregon. They have two sons, Maxwell at the University of Oregon, and Jordan, an 8th grader. Bob an Anna have been members of Congregation Beth Israel since 2009 when they moved to Portland from Minneapolis. Bob currently works at Kaiser Permanente in finance and does consulting work as a Senior Fellow with Portland State University.
Bob is active in the community as a board member for the Multicultural Kidney Education (MIKE) Program and the Congregation Beth Israel Brotherhood. Their son Max has attended Camp Kalsman since 2010, was a counselor last year (2018) and is coming back to be a song leader during the 2019 season.