BRIAN FREEDMAN (He/Him)
Brian grew up in the suburbs of Cleveland, Ohio and Brian attended The Ohio State University. He has worked at Hillel at The Ohio State University as the Director of Engagement in Columbus, Ohio as well as the Program Director for Hillel at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign. Most recently, Brian had been working for Northern Hills Synagogue in Cincinnati, Ohio as their Executive Director and Director of Lifelong Learning.
In his free time, Brian earned a Dual Masters degree in Jewish Education and Jewish Studies from Hebrew College.
When Brian is not working, he enjoys drinking copious amounts of coffee, baking bread and desserts, playing bass guitar, and reading. He moved to Binghamton with his Doodle mix, Scarlett, and is looking forward to hiking and exploring upstate New York with her.
JENNIFER STONE (She/Her)
Jennifer Stone grew up in Peabody, Massachusetts, right outside Boston. She attended Lesley University where she earned her Bachelor of Science in Expressive Arts Therapy, and then spent a wonderful, and warm, two years down in Tallahassee, Florida where she earned her Masters of Science in Higher Education Administration. Jennifer had been working in a variety of settings within higher education. She then decided to take her passion for Judaism, college students, Israel, and bagels; bundle it all together and turn it into a career! She began her time with Hillel as the Director of Student Life at the Santa Barbara Hillel and is now thrilled to join the Hillel at Binghamton team as the Assistant Director.
Jennifer enjoys traveling, (she has been to 23 countries and keeps that list growing) all things Harry Potter, kickboxing, reading on the beach, creating and experimenting with new art techniques, trying out new recipes she finds from tasty videos and the "Great British Bake Off", jamming out to the Maccabeats on repeat in her car, re-watching all 7 seasons of Gilmore Girls, and tries to get to NYC at least once a year to see a Broadway show! With her love of Judaism and the collegiate student experience, Jennifer hopes to continue to bring passion, creativity, innovation and fun into the Hillel at Binghamton community on this new adventure.
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Mickey Benson (They/Them)
Springboard Ezra Jewish Education Specialist
Mickey grew up in Portland, Oregon but picked up a midwestern accent after spending college in Albion, Michigan. While in Albion, Mickey received a degree in Religious Studies with a concentration in Public Policy and a minor in history from Albion College. Outside of school, Mickey was president of three campus clubs: Hillel, Knitting Club, and a group of Medievalists. They are passionate about useless trivia, making art, community placemaking, and creative Jewish learning. Mickey is extremely excited to be joining Hillel at Binghamton University as an Ezra Jewish Education Fellow so that they can have creative, humorous, and introspective conversations with students!
Rabbi Ben Menora (He/Him)
Rav Ben made Aliya from Chicago, IL. He served 3 years in IDF’s Golani brigade, learned in Yeshivat Kerem B'Yavneh (KBY) both before and after his army service, then earned an LL.B. at Bar-Ilan University, while splitting his time between the law library and the BIU Kollel. After 2 years at a corporate law firm, Ben joined the Kollel at Yeshivat Har Etzion (Gush) and received a teacher’s certificate from Herzog College. Ben enjoys trail running, jamming (guitar), researching genealogy, solving puzzles and playing team sports.
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Ellie Menora (She/Her)
Ellie was born in London and lived there until making Aliya with her parents and five siblings. She started training in gymnastics and swimming at the age of 5 and is a certified instructor in both. Ellie studied at Midreshet Tehilla, earned her BSN at Machon Tal in Jerusalem, and trained with Rabanit Shani Taragin to become a Kallah teacher. She is an ER nurse in Shaarei Tsedek hospital, volunteers as a medic for Magen David Adom, and loves being able to help people day and night. Ellie thoroughly enjoys hiking, running, swimming, a good cup of coffee, spending quality time with her family and friends, and hosting meals on Shabbat and Chag.
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CANTOR ABBE LYONS (She/Her)
Cantor Abbe Lyons is thrilled to continue with Hillel at Binghamton as Business Manager. She also serves as Jewish Chaplain and Business Manager for Hillel at Ithaca College. She grew up on Long Island but fell in love with upstate NY in her teens, and graduated from Ithaca College with a major in voice performance in 1987. She is adjunct faculty at ALEPH Ordination Programs where she received cantorial smicha in 2010. She lives in Ithaca with her wife, son, mother-in-law and 2 cats. Fun fact: Abbe was certified as an auto mechanic in brakes and front end for 2 years in the early '80s.
SARAH ROCKFORD (She/Her)
JTS Rabbinic Fellow
Sarah is a second-year rabbinical student at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York. Born and raised in Denver, Colorado, Sarah headed east for school and graduated from Colby College in 2015. She left school with a degree in French, a deep love for the Jewish community in Maine, and a nagging interest in sustainable agriculture. After school, Sarah worked on organic farms in and held various roles in the Maine Jewish community before accepting a role as program director for the Center for Small Town Jewish Life in 2018.
Informed by her work in Maine, Sarah believes that everyone who wants it deserves access to vibrant Jewish community – regardless of geography or socioeconomic background. In her spare time, which feels increasingly limited these days, Sarah loves to hike, knit, cook, and garden. Her most prized possession is a potted etrog tree, which she hopes will bear fruit in the next few years.
Sarah is thrilled to work with the Hillel community at Binghamton and looks forward to visits full of learning, davening, meals, and getting outside to explore the area together.
RACHEL MILLER (She/Her)
Campus Marketing and Development Manager
Rachel is a new Campus Marketing and Development Manager. Prior to her work at Hillel, Rachel served as the marketing and communications coordinator at Hazon, the Jewish Lab for Sustainability, where she oversaw social media, designed advertising campaigns, and crafted email promotions. In addition to her work in marketing, Rachel has experience as a clothing designer emphasizing the role of technology and innovation in performance wear.
Rachel holds a Bachelor of Science in Consumer, Apparel and Retail Studies with a concentration in Apparel Product Design from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. In her downtime she enjoys crafting of all sorts, live musical theater and playing video and tabletop games. Rachel has recently relocated to her hometown in Greensboro, NC with her husband, daughter and their two dogs.