Get to Know Hillel 818 Staff

We are so excited to have so many new faces and returning ones on this year's Hillel 818 staff! Over the last couple weeks everyone has had the chance to share some fun facts about themselves with our students. While everyone will get the chance to meet these staff members and know them better over the course of the year, here are just a few fun things about our team members.


Matt Baram

Meet Matt, our Executive Director. His favorite food is ice cream and this summer he saw Weird Al in concert for the 4th time. The thing he’s most excited about this year is the new building opening!






Evan Taksar Levental

Meet Evan, our Associate Director for Advancement. She says that too many food are her favorite food but if she HAD to pick she’d say all things Mexican (and churros from Disneyland!). This summer she drove 1,200 miles up the West Coast from LA to Vancouver AND started taking tennis lessons. The thing she’s most excited about for this year is welcoming all of our students back to Hillel and to our new building!




Meg Wells

Meet Meg, our Assistant Director: Programming & Engagement. Meg’s favorite food is sweet potato fries. Something cool she did this summer was was go to Roswell, NM and got to see “aliens” on her cross country road trip. Meg is most excited to meeting students this year (she’s been waiting forever to get coffee with everyone)!





Ben Braunstein

Meet Ben, our Director of Operations (and Hillel 818 alum!). Ben's favorite food is pineapple pizza and this past summer he got really into 3D printing. Ben is super excited to also be starting Business School this fall along with everything going on at Hillel 818!






Caroline Schneider

Meet Caroline, our Communications & Development Coordinator. Her favorite food is BBQ (especially brisket or ribs) and this summer she went on a cruise of Alaska. Caroline is most excited about getting to meet everyone this year and getting to know the area (send any and all recommendations her way)!







Aubrey Golding

Meet Aubrey, our Development Coordinator (and Hillel 818 alum!). Her favorite food is an açaí bowl. This summer Aubrey attended the AJC Global Forum in NYC, camped in the Sequoia National Forest, and stayed at one of America’s few all-inclusive vegan resorts in Mendocino, CA. She’s most looking forward to a lot of Hillel-sponsored coffee/tea while catching up with alumni!




Ellen Borenstein

Meet Ellen, our Multicultural & Interfaith Coordinator. Ellen’s favorite food is a draw between Enmoladas and sweet potatoes. This summer Ellen had the chance to meet General Baruch Spiegel of Israel and General Mansour Abu Rashid of Jordan who facilitated the 1994 Peace Treaty signed by the State of Israel and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan. Ellen is most excited about all the cool events planned for this semester!




Max Winer

Meet Max, our Pierce and Valley College Engagement Associate. Max’s favorite food is donuts (he considers himself a donut connoisseur to be exact). This summer he was the Avodah Director at URJ Camp Newman where he had an amazing time. Max is looking forward to meeting so many new people at Pierce and Valley campuses this year!




Eliana Leish

Meet Eliana, our Springboard Inteapreneurship Fellow. Her favorite food is Thai food, especially Pad Thai and Tom Kha. This summer she worked as a camp counselor in the Dominican Republic. This year she’s looking forward to exploring the Valley (and send her any recommendations for cool local spots)!






Diana Mordehay

Meet Diana, our Jewish Agency Israel Fellow. Diana says her favorite food is always changing since she’s always trying new foods but at the moment her favorite is sushi. This summer she staffed the coolest Birthright trip to Israel and then got to do one of her biggest dreams: going on a road trip with her family through the country she was born in, Azerbaijan). Diana is so excited to get back to campus and meet with students since her biggest source of energy is people!



Rabs (aka Rabbi Bryan Borenstein)

Meet, Rabs, one half of our rabbinic couple (Sondra is the other half). His favorite food is ahi tuna. This summer he decided he wants to do a half triathlon so he started training for that (which he says has been pretty grueling)! Rabs is most excited this year for all the unknowns; he can’t wait to meet all of the new students and develop meaningful relationships.





Our staff cannot wait to meet all of you!