Daniel Centers Our Team
Rabbi Meir Azari - Senior Rabbi
Since 1991, Rabbi Azari served as the Senior Rabbi of Beit Daniel. Previously, Rabbi Azari served as the Executive Director of the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism from 1986-1989. Through the years, he served twice as the chairperson of the Israeli MARAM (Israeli Council of Progressive Rabbis). Rabbi Azari currently sits on the Board of the Jewish Agency and is the Deputy Chair of the Evaluation and Measurement Committee. Rabbi Azari has published two books, the first taking an in depth look into Independence Day, its customs and traditions, as they have evolved in Israeli society. The second book is an edited collection of articles introducing Reform Judaism to Israelis and Hebrew readers. He has spoken at hundreds of congregations and conferences in North America and all over Europe.
Under his leadership and with support from the Daniel Family and many others, Beit Daniel has grown into the Daniel Centers for Progressive Judaism with three Kehilot throughout Tel Aviv-Jaffa. Under his leadership, Mishkenot Ruth Daniel, a guesthouse and tours and seminars center that hosts 50,000 guests every year, was established.
Rabbi Azari’s wife is a career diplomat at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and currently serves as the Ambassador to Poland. Previously, she served as Ambassador to Russia and Ukraine. They have two children, Adam and Dafna.
Rabbi Azari was ordained by the Hebrew Union College, and received his B.A. in Jewish History and Political Science from Haifa University. Over the years, he has studied at Hebrew University, San Francisco University and the Graduate Jewish Theological Seminary in Berkeley, CA.
In November 2017, Rabbi Azari was honored to receive an Honorary Doctorate from Hebrew Union College as well as the International Humanitarian Award from the World Union for Progressive Judaism and Women of Reform Judaism at the URJ Biennial in December of 2017. He is the first Reform Rabbi to receive such a prize. The prize recognized his contributions to Progressive Judaism in Israel and around the world.
Attorney Efrat Cochva Weiss - Manager
Completed her BA with honors in Law from Tel Aviv University and completed her Master's Degree in Business Administration from the Interdisciplinary Center Herzliya. Efrat worked for many years as an attorney in the commercial sector and during that time, advised and represented public and private corporations. After years of working the business world, Efrat decided to enter the world of social action and join an organization with strong community-oriented values that seeks to promote societal values. Efrat's role in helping lead the Daniel Centers through a management perspective is crucial for the Center's development and .
Efrat is married and mother of Yahli, Gili and Roni.
Rabbi Galia Sadan - Associate Rabbi, Director of the Conversion school and the bar/bat mitzvah school at Beit Daniel
Rabbi Sadan is a graduate of the departments of Hebrew Literature and Linguistics at Tel Aviv University, and current doctoral student in the Hebrew Literature Department at Tel Aviv University. Her thesis studies liturgy manuscripts from the 11th century Genizah. She was ordained in 2003 as a Rabbi by the Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem. Rabbi Sadan was active for several years at Kol Haneshama Congregation, coordinating the Bar/Bat Mitzvah program. During her rabbinical studies, she served for eighteen months as student rabbi to the Achvat Israel Congregation in Rishon Lezion. There she was active in various fields including work with women prisoners and guidance for people with hearing impediments. At the Daniel Centers she is responsible for overseeing over 100 conversions and hundreds of bar/bat mitzvah ceremonies. Rabbi Sadan teaches Biblical studies and Jewish belief and practice to adults and children.
Freddy Pe´er - Cantor
Cantor Pe´er comes to us from the world of opera, a Bass Baritone soloist who performed in many productions of the Israeli Opera Company. He received his cantorial instruction through the army and served as an army cantor. He has served Beit Daniel since its founding and his voice and presence has become synonymous with the “Beit Daniel Experience”.
Rabbi Mira Raz - Community Rabbi - Mishkenot Ruth Daniel
Rabbi Raz is a graduate of the Talmud and Film and Television departments of Tel Aviv University. She completed her full studies for MA degree in Jewish Law in Tel Aviv University, and holds a Master of Arts in Hebrew letters from Hebrew Union College in the USA. She was ordained as a Rabbi by the Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem in 2001.
Rabbi Raz was a teacher for many years of Bible and Talmud. From 1993 until 2010, she served as the Rabbi at "Natan Ya" congregation in Netanya.
She is the published author of a book of poems "Yesh Mi Yesh" (1997) and of the book "Derech Hatorah Le´ahavah" (The Torah way to Love -2003). Her article "Shraga Betihara" was published in a book of articles called "Conversations with the evil inclination" (2007).
As the community Rabbi at Mishkenot Ruth Daniel, she leads services, teaches, and participates in a number of Jaffa community organizations. She has three adult children who are leading figures in their fields.
Naomi Efrat - Student Rabbi - Kehilat HaLev
Michal Yaniv - Director of Education for Schools
Leora Londy Barash - Director of Education for Early Childhood Development
Leora holds a BA in International Relations from the IDC Herzliya and an MA in Jewish Studies from Ono Academic College. Leora is also a graduate of the TEACH FIRST ISRAEL program teaching certified.
Leora grew up in the United States in a religious-Conservative home with a deep connection to Israel. After completing her studies, she came to Israel as part of a Year of Service program and has since developed rooted here. Leora worked at the Reform Center for Religion and State, where she was exposed to Reform Judaism in Israel. She then taught and guided junior high school students for several years.
Leora joined the Beit Daniel team as coordinator of the "Shonim B'yahad " program. After a year in the position, she took her love for education and deep ties to Judaism and began working with young families in the community, as Director of Early Childhood Education and Young Families. In this position, she is responsible for kindergarten and Zulazu activities and programming for families in the community.
She is currently studying at Hebrew Union College at the Rabbinical Seminary.
Leora is married to Omer and mother of Zohar.
Erica Goldberg - Resource Development and External Relations Coordinator
Erica holds a BA in Psychology from the University of British Columbia and made aliyah in 2005. Prior to joining Beit Daniel in 2018, Erica worked in the field of Jewish pluralism at Midreshet, specifically on Project Zug, an online hevruta learning platform that connects Israelis and Jews in the Diaspora. Erica has also worked in e-commerce, at Yad Vashem as a guide, and taught in a yoga certification program for Jewish women. Erica co-chaired and served on the Board of Directors of Tel Aviv-Jaffa's first pluralistic school, Meshutaf Tel Aviv. Erica lives with her husband, Arye, and their three children in Tel Aviv.
Yael Luz - Program Director
Yael holds a B.A. from Bezalel Academy of Art and Design and an M.A in Conflict Resolution and Mediation from Tel Aviv University. As an artist she held exhibits in Israel and Europe and in the past several years has worked in the cultural and social fields. Prior to joining the Daniel Centers, Yael was the Program Director at Alma: Home for Hebrew Culture. She volunteers at African Refugee Development Center. At the Daniel Centers she plans and organizes its many cultural, educational, and religious events, including the Tikkun Leil Shavuot all-night Torah study.
Edit Reizes - Director of Outreach and Development
Edit has served as the Daniel Centers' Director of Outreach and Development since 2007. She is a development professional with over 20 years of marked accomplishment, including at the Jewish National Fund, Economic Policy Institute, Weitzman Institute of Science and Society for the Protection of Nature in Israel. She has been involved in every aspect of development: strategizing, planning, and executing diverse fundraising efforts. Edit graduated from the University of Maryland, College Park, with a B.S. in Management and Consumer Studies and supportive core work in Public Policy and Administration. Some of her community service involvement and volunteering activities include College Gardens Elementary School, Far Post Soccer, Manna Food Center, and Progressive Montgomery. Edit also serves on the board of Montgomery’s Kids.
Anat Katira - Life Cycle Events Coordinator
Yael Binya - Office Manager
Nava Shushan - Office Manager
Lea Mizrahi - Head Accountant