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Board Member Spotlight: Leslie Friedman

Leslie has had a relationship with the Hillel movement for most of her life. As a student at Ohio State University, Leslie attended services and Shabbat dinners at the local Hillel house. When she moved to Los Angeles in 1985, Leslie was in need of a place to celebrate the high holidays. Leslie and her family found that place at CSUN Hillel - now Hillel 818. At CSUN Hillel, Leslie found a sense of community, vibrant energy, and welcoming culture that gave her a sense of belonging. Her connection to Hillel continues to this day as a member of the Hillel 818 Board of Directors.

During the 2015-2016 school year, Leslie and her husband Mark met with former Hillel 818 Executive Director David Katz, and Mark was inspired to join the Hillel 818 board. Mark and Leslie both believed that Hillel gives its students an opportunity to connect with others, reach for their goals, and gives them a safe place to express their identities. They believed everyone should have a sense of community and social support.

When Mark passed away, Leslie decided to continue his legacy and join the board herself. As a member of the board and our development committee, Leslie works to ensure that Hillel is both a resource and a shelter, a tent and safe space for Jewish students to gather, express their Jewish identities, and become better leaders.

Leslie is the Director of Philanthropy at Dream A World Education, a nonprofit organization that provides arts and social emotional learning programming for children in inner city elementary schools.

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