Rich Walter (President) is a Jewish educator and communal professional currently specializing in Israel education at Emory and the Center for Israel Education. A native of Boston, Rich is an avid sports fan with an obsessive passion for the Patriots, Red Sox and Celtics. He also loves to cook and welcomes anyone to join him for weekly football watching and barbecue during the fall. Rich lives in Dunwoody with his wife Risa, their two daughters, a cat and a guinea pig.
Drew Cohen (Vice President) is the Director of Music at The Weber School, Atlanta’s only transdenominational Jewish high school. In addition to directing the musicians and singers at Weber, Drew plays in prayer-ish settings around Jewish Atlanta (this summer he'll be the Music Director at Camp Coleman),and lives in Avondale Estates with his wife, Kelly and two young children.
Todd Koransky (Treasurer) was born and raised in Atlanta and graduated from UGA where he studied Accounting and Taxation and is now a tax CPA and partner at Williams, Benator & Libby, LLP, a public accounting firm in the Perimeter area. Todd enjoys spending time with his wife, Meghan, and his three boy, Jordy (7 years old), Reid (4 years old), and Brandon (1 years old). Todd also loves wine and playing the bass guitar.
Becky Sowemimo (Immediate Past President) graduated from Emory in 2008, originally from Chevy Chase, Maryland (not named after the actor), and is the Associate Director of InterfaithFamily/Atlanta. She's a singer in the co-ed a cappella group The Graduates, the front-woman for the cover band Almost Famous, a volunteer at Best Friends Atlanta, and a bar trivia/karaoke host (in her "spare time”).
Eli Sperling has been actively engaged in issues relating to modern Israel and the greater Middle East since the beginning of his under-graduate education at Evergreen in Olympia, WA. After receiving his BA in Middle East studies and political economy, he moved to Israel to pursue an MA in contemporary Middle Eastern history at Tel Aviv University. During his four and a half years in Tel Aviv, Eli worked as a research assistant to prominent Israeli scholar, Yosi Kostiner, worked with numerous political and humanitarian organizations, led groups of students and other international delegations around Israel and spent two years researching the social, political and economic conditions of the Sinai Bedouin living in Dahab, Egypt. He is a fluent Hebrew speaker who likewise reads Arabic and has traveled extensively throughout the Middle East, spending significant periods of time in Cairo and the Sinai Peninsula. Eli is currently a Ph.D. candidate at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and working as an Israel specialist at Emory University's Institute for the Study of Modern Israel and Center for Israel Education. His research focuses on Hebrew music as a reflection of Israeli culture, society, and politics.
Yoni Reisman is a native Atlantan, music enthusiast, and entrepreneur. He is one of the co-founders of The Governors Ball Music Festival in New York City and currently resides in Toco Hills with his wife, Katie and four young kids.
Neal Cohen is a marketing executive who has spent 10+ years building brands in the entertainment, hospitality and live music industry.
Sara Duke was one of the early starters of AJMF and following a short respite, has returned to the board. “Unlike the constituency of many boards, I represent the much needed ‘old people demographic.’ I've been married for 54 years and have 3 children (though others may call them adults) and 9 grandchildren. I'm an Educational Consultant and Learning Specialist by trade who for unexplained reasons still works. I've been active in a variety of Jewish organizations and especially Congregation Shearith Israel. I am so excited to be working with Joe, who has fantastic ideas and energy, as AJMF enters it's second decade.”
Rabbi Ruth Abusch–Magder Ph.D., Be'chol Lashon's Rabbi–in–Residence and Director of Education has been involved in Jewish education and leadership for over 30 years. She received her doctorate from Yale University for her work on Jewish food and women's history. In 2006, she was a Jerusalem Fellow at the Mandel Leadership Institute in Jerusalem and she is an active member of Clal's Rabbis Without Borders program. She has taught and published in Europe, Israel, North and South America. A relative newcomer to the South, she is happy to make her home in Atlanta. She is an avid challah baker and very partial to dark chocolate.
Floyd Hall is passionate about art and technology as platforms to bring cultures together and make the world a more fulfilling place. He has worked across the media spectrum in a variety of roles and capacities, including strategy, research, and production. As an Atlanta native, Floyd couldn’t think of a better place to grow up, and he takes Atlanta in his heart wherever he goes.
Robin Harpak is a native Atlantan who works at Emory University in Development and AlumniRelations for the Laney Graduate School. With a double major in Judaic Studies and Hebrew,and an MA in Middle Eastern Studies, she has worked in and volunteered within the JewishCommunity for over a decade and is really excited to serve on the AJMF board. Robin is arunner, fitness group leader, and artist living in Decatur with her best friend and husband, Dotan, and their 4 year old daughter, Carmel, who is the light of their lives.
Beth Friedman is the mother of 3 busy boys and the wife of Jared Friedman. In her spare time she volunteers for ORT, the AA synagogue, The Davis Academy & Aurora Day Camp. She & her partner Jenna Shulman operate a Jewish matchmaking service called juLuv for Atlanta singles. She has a music loving family and is excited to be a part of the AJMF!
Sarah Arogeti, a 5th generation Atlantan, works for Live Nation at Verizon Amphitheatre in Alpharetta. She graduated from the University of Georgia (Go Dawgs!) in 2015 with a degree in Advertising and Sociology. She enjoyed her time at AJMF8 as a Production Manager and is looking forward to learning more about the off-season planning.
Alan Kitey, a native of Allentown, PA, lived in New York City andWashington, D.C. for more than 20 years before moving to Atlanta 9 years ago. Alan has served as a trial attorney, lobbied before Congress, created a foundation for a professional sports team, managed national conventions, as well as helped organizations create and implement fundraising, grassroots, public relations and legislative campaigns. Alan’s love for music from folk to rock and beyond has always been present in everything he does. In the past, he has represented musicians involving them in community and national advocacy campaigns, and currently, through his work as the Congregational Network Director—South for the Union for Reform Judaism, he has seen the transformative role that music plays in building community. Alan is involved in a variety of Jewish and secular organizations and is excited to join the Atlanta Jewish Music Festival board. He currently lives in Dunwoody, is married to Meredith Monroe Kitey, and has two wonderful children, Harry and Sadie.