Staff and Teachers


Rebecca Zimmerman Hornstein
Executive Director

Rebecca is an experienced grassroots organizer and political educator with a passion for building movements for justice grounded in Jewish community and history. She has a B.A from Macalester College and rabbinic ordination from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College.
Rebecca's previous professional roles include working as the organizer for the North Shore Labor Council (AFL-CIO) where she fostered solidarity among union members to build power for all working class people, and working as T'ruah's rabbinic peer educator. She has been a leader in work to organize the North American Jewish community for immigrant justice, for Palestinian equal rights and against the rising threat of white nationalism. She is an alumnus of the JOIN for Justice Organizing Fellowship and the Wexner Graduate Fellowship. She currently lives in Lynn, Massachusetts with her partner, Jonathon, and puppy, Mishka. 

Reach Rebecca at

Sandy Martin
Director of Operations

Sandy has worked for, and volunteered with, youth organizations and community coalitions in the Boston area for more than 30 years. She was the coordinator of the South End/Lower Roxbury Youth Workers' Alliance for more than ten years- an organization which became a model for other neighborhoods across the city. 

Sandy's parents both grew up in Jewish Roxbury, and she is happy to be working with Boston's Jewish social justice community. She is also very happy spending time with her 1-year old granddaughter. Sandy uses she/her/hers pronouns.

Reach Sandy at 617-566-6281 or by email at

Bethany Basile
Deputy Director

Based in Jamaica Plain, Bethany has led fundraising teams at leading cultural institutions for 10 years. As the Director of Foundation Relations at NY's Roundabout Theatre Company, she supported the launch of the art sector's first technical theater workforce initiative. Prior to Roundabout, she worked on landmark community-based initiatives at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM). Most recently, returning home to Boston and taking a break from arts and culture, Bethany led institutional giving for Northeastern University's School of Law during which time, she was fortunate to study methods of social movements, earning her M.S. in the inaugural class of the Media Advocacy program. Guided by a person misson to support those bringing justice and equity to Boston, Bethany holds close her family and the Jewish community's part in the city's history. Bethany uses she/her/hers pronouns.

Reach Bethany at 857-203-0888 or by email at

Zohar Berman

Social Justice and Cultural Organizer

Zohar is a Yiddishist and Diasporist who is passionate about building strong and healthy Diaspora Jewish communities. Born and raised in an interfaith household in New Hampshire, they were part of economic justice organizing efforts from a young age. They received a BA in both Politics and Middle Eastern Studies from Mount Holyoke College, where they focused on social movement studies and examined the linguistics of collective organizing. In college they trained and worked as a peer-to-peer social justice educator and facilitator, and served Mount Holyoke's Jewish Student Union as chair.

From 2018-2019, Zohar learned and worked at the Yiddish Book Center, first as a student in the Steiner Summer Yiddish Program, where they helped to transcribe editions of ILGWU's Yiddish newspaper Gerechtigkeit, and later as an indexer for the Wexler Oral History Project. They served previously as fellow for Repair the World Baltimore, assisting food justice activists to improve food distribution and working alongside Baltimore's Black farmers to ensure that Black communities in Baltimore continued to have access to fresh produce. Zohar most recently worked as assistant project manager for the Princeton Geniza Lab, whose team is dedicated to researching documentary materials primarily in Judeo-Arabic from the Cairo Geniza.

Reach Zohar by email at

Meira Soloff

Education Director

Meira has a B.A. in Anthropology and a minor in Near Eastern and Judaics studies from Brandeis University and a Masters in Teaching Early Childhood Education from The Eliot Pearson Department of Child Study and Human Development at Tufts University. She has worked as a teacher in the Boston Public schools and in a variety of out of school settings. Prior to that she worked as an advocate for equitable urban development and displacement prevention in Boston and the surrounding areas. She is also an alumnus of the JOIN class of 2010. During her free time, Meira loves singing circles, biking, and reading.


Reach Meira at 617-566-6281 or by email at


Mona Pollack
Temporary Communications Associate

Mona (she/her/hers) has been involved in BWC as a member since 2017, when she was first introduced to the community through the A Besere Velt Yiddish chorus. She has worked extensively with ABV every year since then, co-chairing in 2019, and has also worked with the Jewish-Muslim Solidarity Committee, the Immigrant Justice & Sanctuary Committee, the Acting for Racial and Economic Justice Committee, and, most recently, she's been co-chairing the newly revived Israel/Palestine Committee.

She is passionate about dismantling racial capitalism, and the crucial intersections between ending white supremacy and the carceral state with other struggles that are very personal to her, among them disability justice, LGBTQ+ liberation, survivors' rights, and the continuity of Jewish culture and life. BWC has provided a home for her to emerge from disability, reconnect with her Jewishness through Yiddishkayt and radical Jewish history, and find community to work with locally to build towards collective liberation. She's eager to support that community as best she can through this transitional period. (Note: We're still looking for a permanent Communications Manager! See our jobs page for more information.)

Reach Mona by email at


A Besere Velt Yiddish Chorus
Derek David, Director

Derek David (b.1985) is a composer, conductor, and music educator based in Boston, Massachusetts. As a composer, his dramatic and vibrant chamber music has been performed in both Europe and the United States and has received great recognition from audiences and critics alike.  Derek's String Quartet (2011) has been met with international praise and repeated performances throughout the United States. It was described by Sabino Pena of France's as "a true musical jewel of the 21st Century." The quartet was awarded both the EAMA Nadia Boulanger Institute Prize and the Morton Gould ASCAP Award in 2011, as well as first place in the American Prize in 2015. Additionally, he is the current recipient of the 2018 SFCM Hoefer Prize for his body of work from over the past 10 years. As a conductor, Derek was the conductor of the Full Circle Opera Project for their 2003-2004 season and conducted the finale to Puccini's Turandot in Los Angeles Walt Disney Concert Hall. As a choir conductor, he conducted the men's and women's choirs at the Walden School from 2015-2017.

Dr. David holds a DMA from the New England Conservatory of Music and is currently a teaching fellow at Harvard University, where he is a five-time recipient of the Harvard University Distinction in Teaching Award. Outside of composition and conducting, his musical areas of interest extend to medieval theory and musicology, the Beatles, and Jewish Music.

For more information please visit



Shule Teachers


Anna Adler
Circle Playtime (Pre-Shule)

Raised in a family of musicians and storytellers, Anna Adler leads music classes for young children and social justice workshops for parents and teachers. Anna is thrilled to be part of Shule and knows that her maternal grandmother - whose first language is Yiddish - is smiling down on her. Outside of teaching, Anna enjoys kayaking, biking, dancing and family/friend gatherings.

Pronouns: she/her



Hana Hobscheid


Hana gew up in Chicago and recently moved to the Boston area from Washington, D.C. to work towards a masters degree in international development. She has worked in a variety of roles as a teacher with youth from diverse backgrounds in the United States and Middle East. In her free time, she loves to sing, practice speaking Arabic, and play with her sweet beagle, Rosie!

Pronouns: she/her


Jaiden Gividen

Alef (1st)

Ms. Jaiden Gividen loves teaching and learning from young people and looks forward to being in class. In her free time, she can be spotted talking to family on the phone while she goes on long walks around Waltham. When the weather allows, she also goes to forest trails. Most of the time, her dog sidekick Gideon is with her. She also loves cooking and baking even though it is a work in progress. 

Pronouns: she/her



Eric Fossinger

Beyz (2nd)

Eric Fossinger has spend over a decade working in early education and currently teaches kindergarten as a paraprofessional in Brookline. He found the Boston Workers Circle while he and his wirfe were seeking a progressive Jewish community in which to raise their two children. When he is not teaching, Eric can be found eploring the Arnold Arboretum with his three and six year olds.

Pronouns: he/him


Mateo Rojas
Giml (3rd)

Mateo Rojas is an Indigenous immigrant from Paraguay living in Boston and has loved being a staff at summer camps, childcare centers, and was the assistant teacher to a children's choir. When he is not at Shule, you will often spot him around Massachusetts leading and participating in protests for all types of justice and organizing projects to build a better world. When he is not teaching or organizing, you will find him either at his Jewish synagogue participating in activities or playing with his sweet service dog, Tilly!

Pronouns: he/him


Elianna Scheide

Daled (4th)

Elianna Scheide was born and raised in Los Angeles, CA where she has worked for many summers as staff and the Arts and Crafts Specialist at a Jewish sleepaway camp. She graudated from Vassar College in 2020 with a degree in Psychological Science. Elianna is also starting her second year with Americorps tutoring students at Boston Green Academy in Brookline. When not at Shule or teaching, Elianna loves to cook all sorts of food, sew and knit, and play with her roommates' cats.

Pronouns: she/her


Lior Appel-Kraut
Hey (5th)

Lior Appel-Kraut was born and raised in Michigan, and has lived in the Boston area for eight years. Besides teaching Shule, she spends her time organizing and researching at the labor union UNITE HERE Local 26, and lives in a Jewish co-op. She is passionate about Jewish culture, community, and solidarity, and is excited for her third year teaching Shule at BWC.

Pronouns: she/her





Maddie Ulanow

Vov (6th)

Maddie Ulanow is a first-year teacher at Shule and has taught K-12 extracurriculars in the U.S., Israel, Palestine and Jordan. When not teaching Shule or coaching baseball, she is a graduate student at Harvard, focused on development economics. In her spare time, she enjoys interfaith organizing, the grad student union, and trying to learn how to play guitar.

Pronouns: she/her



Miles Meth
Zayin (7th)

Miles Meth was born in the Boston area, went to school in upstate New York, and has since returned to work as a union organizer. Outside of work and teaching Shule, Miles likes playing the saxophone, reading, and spending time outside.

Pronouns: he/his





Jonah Sidman

A native of Brooklyn and graduate from Oberlin College, Jonah has been participating in the Boston Workers Circle community for years, coordinating events, making music and studying Yiddish. Jonah now teaches Yiddish to adults and music to Shule students at BWC. Jonah is also an education professional at the Musuem of Science and can often be found fiddling for American or Irish folk dances all over the East Coast. 

Pronouns: he/him