Midreshet Rachel Faculty
The foundation of our educational success rests with the talented and idealistic faculty members who transmit Torah in an authentic and personal way to our students, serving also as role models and inspiration. Through knowing them, one can better appreciate the unique nature of Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya College of Jewish Studies for Women. Presented here are brief biographical sketches of the people to whom our students owe so much of their intellectual and spiritual growth.
Rabbi Shurin is the Rosh Midrasha of Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya College of Jewish Studies for Women and a senior faculty member at The David Shapell College / Yeshivat Darche Noam. Rabbi Shurin grew up in New York, and learned in the Chaim Berlin Yeshiva with Rav Yitzchak Hutner, zt”l. After receiving an advanced degree in Guidance and Counseling from Nova University, he moved to Israel in 1977, joining the Kollel and staff of the original Shapell College. A grandson of Reb Yaakov Kamenetsky, zt”l, he spent much time with his grandfather, absorbing his special approach to Tanach and Jewish History. Rabbi Shurin, his wife Esther, and their children live in Neve Yaakov, Jerusalem. email@example.com
Rabbi Karlinsky, co-founder and Dean of the Darche Noam Institutions , is one of the Roshei Yeshiva of The David Shapell College / Yeshivat Darche Noam and a senior faculty member at Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya College of Jewish Studies for Women. Rabbi Karlinsky, a Los Angeles native, came to Israel in 1968, learning in Yeshivat Kerem B’Yavneh, and the Mir Yeshiva, Jerusalem. He received smicha from the ITRI Kollel. After completing a MEd in Educational Psychology at Temple University, he settled in Israel, combining teaching at the original Shapell College, BMT, and Aish HaTorah with work as a photojournalist published in Time, Newsweek, the New York Times and exhibited at the Israel Museum. Rabbi Karlinsky, his wife Ruthie, and their children live in Har Nof, Jerusalem. firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Finson has served as the Educational Director of MRC since 1995. She completed a Master’s of Science in Counseling at Hunter College in New York. Her early work as a guidance counselor and teacher at Yeshiva University High School and guidance counselor at the prestigious Bruriah High School in Elizabeth, NJ, allowed her to combine innovative educational programming with counseling strategies to enable every student’s personal growth. She later taught a broad range of classes at the Jewish Heritage Center in Queens and at various seminaries in Israel. Mrs. Finson was greatly influenced by the philosophy of HaGaon Rav Yisroel Ze’ev Gustman, zt”l, with whom she formed a close relationship during an early visit to Israel in 1979. Mrs. Finson embodies R. Gustman’s message of drawing in students with closeness and acceptance in teaching and counseling. email@example.com
Rabbi Yehoshua Bienenfeld received his semicha from the Rabbi Issac Elchanan Theological Seminary and his Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Jewish Education from Yeshiva University. He has served as a pulpit Rabbi for the past 39 years in the United States. His teaching and lecturing experience are quite extensive, taking him to many yeshiva high school and university settings. As a talmid of Rav Yosef Dov Soloveitchik zt”l, Rabbi Bienenfeld is able to portray the Rav’s teachings in a personal and informative way.
Mrs. Chwat was born and educated in New York. She attended the Beit Midrash Program at Stern College for Women. There she received a solid grounding in the methodology of textual study. She graduated with a degree in Jewish Studies and Political Science. Upon graduation, Mrs. Chwat made aliyah and began teaching at the Ulpan Giyur in Kfar Etzion as well as at other Jewish women’s learning programs. Menucha is also a fertility, pregnancy and childbirth educator. She sees this as a complementary discipline to her teaching in MRC. Her ideal is to educate couples how go through these life cycle events in accordance with Jewish law and Hashkafa. She and her husband are founding members of the settlement Carmei Tzur near Hebron, where they continue to live with their children.
Mrs. Coopersmith grew up in Jerusalem. She received her B.Ed. In Tanach from Michlala Jerusalem College for Women, and a MA in Jewish History from Touro College, Jerusalem. She taught Jin numerous seminaries in Israel, as well as in Toronto, Canada, where she and her husband, Rabbi Nechemia Coopersmith, worked in education and outreach. Dina and her husband and their children live in Maalot Daphna, Jerusalem.
Before making aliya in 1970, Rabbi Farber lived in New York, and learned in Chaim Berlin and studied poitical science at Brooklyn College. Rabbi Farber was a close Talmid of Rav Yitzchak Hutner, zt”l, and is today a leading expert on Rav Hutner’s monumental work Pachad Yitzchak. Since joining the Darche Noam Institutions in 1990, he has gained a reputation as one of the pillars of the institution, continually radiating words of Torah, and serving as a worthy role model for his students. His dedication to his students can be seen in his well-known and enthusiastic participation in the joyous events of the Darche Noam community. Rabbi Farber and his wife Zohar, live in Bayit Vegan, Jerusalem.
Rabbi Fischer has a BA in English Literature from Yeshiva University, smicha from RIETS, and an MA in English Literature from NYU. After serving as Rabbi and educator with a small congregation in New Jersey, Rabbi Fischer made aliya in 1986. He was Director of Jewish Studies at the WUJS Institute in Arad, and continues to teach there as well as at a number of other educational and outreach programs. Rabbi Fischer, his wife Cheryl, and their children live in Beit Shemesh.
Mrs. Goldman, originally from Brooklyn, N.Y., made aliya in 1969, during a time of great idealism and spirituality in Israel. Mrs. Goldman studied Special Education and Tanach at Michlala Jerusalem College for Women. She was also a student at Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya for ten years. She has been extremely successful both in helping her students improve their textual skills and in training our tutors. Osnat has taught at the Aish Executive Learning Program and Tikva High School. Presently, Osnat is a talented life coach working with both individuals and groups.
Mrs. Shira Greenstein has been a teacher at Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya for three years. She was born and raised in Michigan. After graduating Yeshivas Darchei Torah, she attended Hadar Seminary in Jerusalem. Shira brings with her an enthusiasm for teaching and a true Simchas HaChaim (Joy of Life) which carries over to her students and her classroom. She
taught Chumash and other topics at her former school, and also has experience teaching children with learning disabilities. Shira received a bachelor’s degree from Thomas Edison College in New Jersey. She currently lives in Nevei Yaakov, Jerusalem with her husband who is a full time Kollel member.
Rabbi Hirshfeld, co-founder of the Darche Noam Institutions, is Rosh HaYeshiva of Yeshivat Darche Noam /David Shapell College. Originally from Chicago, he is a graduate of the Hebrew Theological College in Skokie,Illinois. In 1969, after completing a BA in Mathematics at Roosevelt University, he came to Israel and was privileged to learn under the Roshei Yeshiva of the Mir Yeshiva, Rabbi Chaim Shmulevitz zt”l and Rabbi Nachum Pertzovich zt”l. Before the establishment of the Darche Noam Institutions, he taught at the original Shapell College and at Aish HaTorah. Rav Hirshfeld opens up advanced students to the depths of Aggadta through his Ein Yaakov shiur. firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Sara Dena Katz grew up in Providence Rhode Island. She came to Israel in 1986 where she studied at Michlala College for Women. Mrs. Katz has a Bachelors in Education from Empire State University and a Masters in Historical Jewish Thought from Touro College. She has taught at numerous seminaries in Jerusalem where many students have profited from her incisive teaching method. She lives in Har Nof with her husband Rabbi Aharon Katz, Rosh Yeshiva of Derech Etz Chaim, and their children.
Mrs. Karlinsky has been on the Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya staff since 1985. She grew up in Philadelphia and studied at the Bais Yaakov Teachers’ Seminary in New York. In 1971, she married Rabbi Shaya Karlinsky and they made aliya soon afterward. Mrs. Karlinsky graduated from Michlala Jerusalem College for Women with a degree in Tanach and Counseling. She also works as a guidance counselor at a girls’ high school near Beit Shemesh. The Karlinsky family lives in Har Nof, Jerusalem. email@example.com
Rabbi Lerner, after completing his BA in International Relations from Concordia University, left his native Canada to begin his studies at Darche Noam/Shapell’s in 1992. After three years of study, he went on to learn at Medrash Shmuel and received Rabbinic Ordination from Rabbi Zalman Nechemia Goldberg shlit”a. Rav Yitzchak continues his studies at Medrash Shmuel by day, lectures at Heritage House and teaches both at Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya and Yeshivat Darche Noam/Shapell’s. Rabbi Lerner’s brand of enthusiasm lends itself well to his popular tefilla and Ein Yaakov classes. He, his wife Michelle, and their children live in Beitar.
Mrs. Levine was born in Germany and moved to the United States as a small child. She holds a Hebrew Teacher’s diploma from the Yeshiva University Teachers’ Institute, a BA in English and Hebrew Literature from Queens College, and an MS in Tanach from the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Yeshiva University. She also studied at the Bogrot program at Michlala Jerusalem College for Women. Mrs. Levine taught in Dov Revel of Forest Hills, Yeshiva of Flatbush High School, Bais Yaakov of Kew Gardens and Michlala. She, her husband Dr. Philip Levine, and their daughters live in Har Nof, Jerusalem.
Rabbi Manning moved to Israel from England in 2002, giving up a successful career as a partner in a London law firm to become a Rabbi and teacher. He gained his Masters in Law from Oxford University and learned at Yeshivat Etz Chaim in London, Yeshivat Ateret Yisrael in Bayit Vegan, and at the Jerusalem Kollel of Rav Yitzchok Berkovits. He writes a regular column on contemporary Torah-related issues for a national Jewish newspaper in England, and teaches widely in Jerusalem on all aspects of Torah thought and practice. He lives with his wife Sarah and their children in Har Nof. firstname.lastname@example.org
Mrs. Rubin is originally from Monsey, New York. She attended Bais Yaakov of Spring Valley and Gateshead Teachers’ Seminary, and studied Education and Judaic Studies at Rockland Community College. Mrs. Rubin was the principal and co-founder of Congregation Ahavas Torah Hebrew School in Monroe, New York, and led the Bais Yaakov Live and Learn Tour for five years. She also taught in the Hebrew Day School of Orange County, Yavneh Academy in Paramus, New Jersey, and Breuer’s High School. Mrs. Rubin, her husband Rabbi Moshe Rubin, and their children live in Mattersdorf, Jerusalem.
Mrs. Shurin teaches Navi and Bein Adam L’Chaveiro at Midreshet Rachel v’Chaya, where she joined the staff in 1984. She grew up in Far Rockaway, NY, graduated from HILI Yeshiva High School and studied at Torah Academy for Girls Seminary as well as the Teacher’s Institute for Women. She has a BA in English and Education from Brooklyn College. The Shurins made aliya in 1977 and have been living in Neve Yaakov with their family since 1982. Mrs. Shurin loves parenting and teaching and has been busy doing both for over 30 years.
Rabbi Fyvel Shuster, serves as Menahel Ruchani at Yeshivat Darche Noam/Shapell´s. His varied educational and vocational background – learning at Yeshivat Hakotel, Yeshivas Haim Berlin, and with the Talner Rebbe, shlita, working in high-tech, teaching at the Skokie Yeshiva and, for the last 11years, in Machon Lev´s program for adult beginners – makes him uniquely suited to help MRC students in their spiritual growth. Rav Shuster, his wife Leah, and their 5 children live in Bayit Vegan, Jerusalem. email@example.com
Mrs. Spitz, originally from Mexico City, grew up in Far Rockaway, N.Y. She studied in Gateshead Teacher Seminary in the U.K. An experienced educator of students of all ages, Mrs. Spitz’s exuberant classroom atmosphere helps students find great meaning and enjoyment in their Judaism. Mrs. Spitz currently lives with her husband and children in Maalot Dafna, Jerusalem.
Mrs. Warhaftig was born in London, England, and came on aliya in 1968. She studied at Machon Gold and received her teacher’s diploma there. She earned a B.Ed in Tanach and Torah Sheb’al-peh from Michlala Jerusalem College for Women. She also studied counseling and works as a parent counselor, in addition to teaching classes at Michlelet Emunah and Yakar. Golda, her husband Rabbi Dr. Itamar Warhaftig, and their children live in Arzei Habirah, Jerusalem.