Meet Our Staff

Leadership

Efraim Yudewitz, Camp Director

Efraim YudewitzEfraim Yudewitz is the Director of Camp Tel Noar and is excited to plan for another fantastic summer in Hampstead. Efraim brings a deep background in camping and experiential education, along with a great deal of personal warmth. Prior to returning to his passion for overnight camp, Efraim spent seven years at Gann Academy, the independent Jewish high school, where he served first as Associate Director of Experiential Education and more recently as Co-Director of Admissions. As he’ll tell you, “I consider helping students shape their identities and passions to be an honor and awesome opportunity”, and he applies that same outlook to his time with campers and staff. Efraim developed his love for Judaism and Jewish education at Jewish summer camp, where he spent eleven summers as a camper and then a staff member. He has served on the faculty of the Foundation for Jewish Camp’s Cornerstone Fellowship program — where he engaged camp counselors in designing Jewish sports programming, among other projects — and of the Prozdor Hebrew High School of Hebrew College. Efraim graduated from Rutgers University in 2006 where he received the Maurice and Irma Meyer Award for excellence in Jewish Studies. He loves camp and loves sharing with the entire CTN community as well has his two daughters, Mia and Elana, and his wife, Jessica. View on LinkedIn – Email Efraim 

Becca GoldmanBecca Goldman, Assistant Director

When you call to enroll or ask questions, you’ll likely speak with Becca first. You’re in good hands: Becca brings thirteen years in leadership roles at summer camps. She grew up at Camp Pembroke, the Cohen Camp for girls, spending 13 summers as a camper, CA and counselor and worked for Camp Ramah in her first year-round camp role.  The 2018 season will be her 7th summer at Camp Tel Noar, and she can’t wait to return to the shores of Sunset Lake for another fantastic summer with the campers and staff. She holds a BS in Hospitality and Tourism Management from University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Camp has been such an integral part of Becca’s life and she looks forward to continuing to provide valuable experiences to the next generation of campers. View On LinkedIn – Email Becca

Michelle Jackson, Program Director

Michelle is returning to camp and bring with her a huge amount of creativity, energy and fun! She comes to us from the Stoughton YMCA (previously the Striar JCC) after spending thirteen years with the organization. In her experiences she has overseen day camps, after school programming, aquatics, membership and family programming. She grew up in Marblehead where everyone she knew was connected to summer camps, and she cannot wait to have her own camp friends now! With a Bachelors degree in Psychology from Bowdoin, and her incredible experience, Michelle is a terrific asset to camp. Michelle is so excited to join our camp family and to share her experience with her own daughters, and wife (CTN alum!) Shanna Belenky. Michelle can’t wait to meet you!

Sharon Lasky, Director of Community Supporthead counselors

Our most tenured member of staff, Sharon has spent 47 summers on Sunset Lake and is always counting down to the next! Sharon is bubbly, fun and a wonderful resource for our campers, counselors, parents and everyone in between. Have a summer birthday? Sharon will be the first to lead the camp in singing Happy Birthday and the first to skip around the room! You can always find Sharon around camp sporting her sun hat and walkie-talkie, ready for anything. Sharon is a great source of knowledge about the traditions and history of camp and helps infuse the legacy of Tel Noar in all that she does.

 

robLee Krasnoo, Head Counselor

Working with our male campers and counselors, and in close partnership with the other Head Counselors, we have the beloved Lee Krasnoo. Lee has been with us since 2013 and has found his second home at Tel Noar after spending many years at several other overnight camps. He is a High School Latin teacher and wrestling coach in Wayland. Camp Tel Noar wouldn’t be the same without his calm, caring demeanor around camp and his Color War face paint and spirit. Lee is approachable, warm and your go-to guy if you want to laugh. Campers and staff know that Lee is always available if they need anything at all!

Kevin Fisher, Head Counselor

Kevin is thrilled to join the Head Counselor team at Camp Tel Noar this summer! Kevin is currently the Hampstead Middle School Choral Director just a couple minutes up the road from CTN. He earned his undergraduate degree from the University of New Hampshire where he was member of The New Hampshire Gentlemen – an all-male a cappella group. Kevin is currently finishing his master’s degree in Educational Leadership/Administration from Southern New Hampshire University in Manchester, NH. He coaches soccer and softball, teaches piano and voice lessons, and enjoys traveling to and exploring New York City and the New Hampshire seacoast. Kevin grew up and attended summer camp in Norton, Massachusetts – 30 minutes south of Boston, and his dad worked at both Camp Pembroke and Camp Tel Noar! He is an active Boston Red Sox fan and theater-goer, and he loves playing tennis in the summer!

Sheri Leeds Louis, Head Counselor

Sheri is returning to camp as Head Counselor for the 2nd session.  Sheri spent 7 years at Camp Tel Noar as a camper, CAT, and then a counselor.  Both of Sheri’s children are thrilled to be joining her this summer to experience camp for themselves.  Sheri currently lives in Portland, Oregon with her husband, Keith, and her two children, Noah & Emilia.  She teaches Mindful Parenting classes and mindfulness/social skills classes for children and is also the Director of Programs for the non-profit, Beyond Differences.  In her free time, Sheri enjoys traveling, exploring the Pacific NW, running, and hiking with her family. She is counting down the days!

Sharyn Wedge, Head Counselorsharyn wedge

Sharyn will be returning to Camp Tel Noar for her 17th summer! Sharyn grew up as a camper, counselor, and eventually Head Counselor before taking a hiatus from camp. Her daughter Madi started her own camp career  in 2014 as a camper and it is obvious that CTN is in their blood. Sharyn is a speech pathologist in the Sharon public schools and she lives nearby in Stoughton, MA. She spent her previous years on staff as a member of the Boating and Canoeing Department so she is always certain to make time to spend a free period on the waterfront. Welcome back Sharyn!

Jill Vetstein, Head Counselor

Jill joined the CTN Head Counselor team in 2017, we don’t know what we did before her! This will be Jill’s 17th summer at the Cohen Camps (including 8 years as camper and 7 as counselor at Camp Pembroke).  Jill’s last summer at Pembroke was also the summer she started dating her husband at a social in 1997.  She has worked at other summer camps, enrichment programs, schools and non-profit organizations over the years. Jill has a Masters degree in Social Work and Bachelors in Education and Human Services. Jill lives in Ashland, MA with her husband and two children and is originally from Framingham. Jill keeps herself busy during the year with her own two kids and in her Framingham psychotherapy practice working with children and parents. Jill believes that a happy staff make happy campers and happy campers make happy parents.  She is looking forward to fostering that environment for the entire Camp Tel Noar family.

Sivan Elefson, Head Counselor

Sivan is so VERY excited to join the Head Counselor team at Camp Tel Noar this summer. With her varied and extensive experience working with children and families at both day and overnight camps as well as her work in her community, she brings a warm and knowledgeable approach to supporting campers, counselors and families. Sivan is a Licensed Mental Health Counselor in the state of Massachusetts. She has an MA in Mental Health Counseling & Expressive Therapy from Lesley University and a BA in Visual Art from Roger Williams University. Currently, Sivan works in her private counseling practice as well as teaching Music & Movement classes to preschool aged children at her local health club. When not working in her community, she is busy chasing her energetic son and supporting her daughter who is finishing 2nd grade and excited to be attending overnight camp for the first time herself!  Sivan is an alumnus of Camp Pembroke where she spent 4 summers, and where the love of Jewish learning was fostered. Since then there has always been a special place in her heart for camp family! Sivan will have her 2 children with her at camp and is looking forward to making new camp memories and building bonds that last a lifetime!

Brittani Rutherford

Brittani comes to us from Derry, NH – born and raised! Her background is filled with various experiences working with kids, whether she was teaching swim lessons, karate or dance, she loves the opportunity to spend time and get to know each child individually. She has been a certified Lifeguard for 8 years and a certified Swim Instructor for the past 4 years and was even a Disney cast member as a lifeguard! She believes in fun and exciting summers spent on a Lake and adored her past summers as a staff member at Camps Kenwood & Evergreen. Safety is her number one priority and she is currently in school to be a paramedic, with the end goal of being a flight medic for the Boston-area hospitals. She is extremely excited to be spending her first summer on Sunset Lake!

Jessica Cressionnie, Head of Drama

Jessica Cressionnie is so excited to be heading up the drama program for another summer. This will be her very first summer camp experience. Jessica teaches with Wingspan Arts, The Dalton School, and The Salk School of Science in New York City. Originally a Louisiana native, she has been working in theatre since her initial role at the age of three and has been directing and writing shows since junior high school. She has directed numerous shows professionally with non-profit theatres and schools, some of which include: “Winnie the Pooh,” “The Jungle Book,” “The Commedia Pinocchio,” and “Happy Days: A New Musical.” While in Louisiana, she founded Synergy Performing Arts, LLC; ran the drama department at St. Thomas Aquinas High School; created and ran a drama program at Harvest Christian Academy; and taught private piano/voice lessons. Jessica recently finished her master’s degree in Educational Theatre at NYU and can’t wait to share everything that she has learned with the Camp Tel Noar community!

Sara Haskin, Head of Arts & CraftsSara

Sara is currently a middle school art teacher at RJ Grey Jr. High in Acton, MA.  Much of her life has revolved around camp and art and she spent 13 years as a camper and counselor at Camp Yavneh. Entering her 5th summer at Tel Noar she is looking forward to new and innovative projects and working on community art installations.  She did her undergrad at the University of Vermont and her masters at the University of Wisconsin in Art Education. She comes to camp with her energetic, awesome boys, Jonah and Phin! They love camp as much as Sara and can’t wait to be back at their summer home.

Nick Arroyo, Head of Athletics

Nick is excited to be back with the Camp Tel Noar staff as the Head of Athletics.  He brings an extensive knowledge of a wide range of sports and activities and has been involved with athletics throughout his entire life.  Nick was born and raised in Southern California and graduated from Keene State College with a B.S. in Physical Education.  He has taught physical education for the past 9 years and has coached many of the after school teams in a variety of sports.  Nick moved from Los Angeles, CA to New Hampshire two years ago with his wife Sara, who was raised in Hampstead, NH just down the street from Camp Tel Noar.  They recently welcomed their first daughter to the family in December, Nicholee Rose Arroyo.  An avid sports fan, Nick loves to play just about any sport and enjoys snowboarding in the winter, golfing when he can, and spending time at the beach with his family and friends.

Molly Winsten, Special Diets Coordinator

Molly Winsten is thrilled to be returning to Camp Tel Noar this summer. She started years ago as a camper and as a CIT and loved every second of it, and can’t wait to be able to bring her passion for special diets to a place she cares so much about. She is currently a graduate student at Boston University, getting her masters in nutrition and her dietitians license. After being diagnosed with multiple food allergies and sensitivities her freshman year in college, she chose to embrace the challenge and begin her journey with nutrition.  In her spare time she loves playing sports! She was a varsity athlete in undergrad and now plays rugby for BU, so fitness and health are also very important to her, and she understands the importance of making sure your kids have the calories and nutrition they need to enjoy every second at camp. She is so excited to meet everyone and begin the camp season!

Katie Hamelburg, Jewish Programming

Katie is a Washington, DC native who recently moved to the Boston area. She attended the University of Maryland, studying Jewish and Middle East studies with a focus in Hebrew Language Education and is thrilled to be joining us at CTN. Katie was active in her Jewish community in college, co-creating the conservative minyan and pluralistic Jewish group on campus. She also organized a tutoring program at a local high school and an Alternative Winter Break program in Guatemala, as a part of Maryland Hillel’s Center for Social Justice. Outside of university, Katie was a returning staff member for United Synagogue Youth,  working with middle and high school students while serving on the education team for Seaboard Region USY. She was the advisor at a local synagogue, and staffed USY on Wheels in 2016. Katie is an avid Israeli dancer who loves performing and attending weekly Israeli dance sessions, and is excited to begin exploring Boston. She is really excited to see what CTN is all about!

Liel Zahavi-Asa, Head of Jewish Life & Learning

We welcome Liel to CTN with an expansive Jewish background. Liel made Aliyah from California with her family and was raised in Efrat, Israel. She holds a BS in Expressive Arts Therapy from Lesley University and an MA in Jewish Education from Hebrew University. She recently completed the 7th cohort of the ICenter’s Masters of Concentration in Israel Education. Liel just marked her third year working at Rutgers Hillel as the Director of Jewish Life and Israel Engagement, and will be starting the Israeli tour guide license course in the fall. She has extensive experience working as a formal and informal Jewish educator at summer camps, Hebrew schools, and Jewish communities across America. She is also an alumni of the Pardes summer learning program and the Brandeis Collegiate Institute summer program. Liel has staffed approximately 15 Birthright trips, is a graduate of the Sudbury Democratic school system, and is the youngest theater director in Jerusalem to date. She can’t wait to add her summers at Tel Noar to her education experiences!

Kerri Tabasky, Programming Specialist

Kerri is thrilled to return to CTN after a 27 year hiatus, with a role in Programming. She’ll be involved in our media and podcast programs as well as support our cooking program. In the off-season, Kerri spends her days writing and developing the TV dark comedy “Mac and Drew”, starring Lauren Potter, Chris Kattan, Scott Evans, and Max Adler. She’s also working with fellow CTN alum David Yas to launch The Boston Podcast Network, and looks forward to bringing podcasting to camp as an elective. In addition, Kerri is a public speaker and talks with kids and adults about the importance of acceptance and inclusion. She lives in Sudbury, MA with her husband, their three daughters Jordan, Maya, and Anna, and dog, Rizzo. Jordan and Maya are longtime CTN campers and they are all counting down until the summer!

David Leifer, Digital Photography Specialist

David is excited to be at Camp Tel Noar full time this year. As a commercial photographer David has been visiting CTN, as well as Camp Pembroke and Camp Tevya, a few days each summer for the last fifteen years, producing the photographs for the camp websites and print brochures. Since graduating from Rochester Institute of Technology, David has been working in corporate and editorial photography, specializing in people on location; from musicians, construction workers and CEOs to professors, students and campers! David is equally passionate about teaching. From being a technology integration specialist at Lawrence Elementary School in Brookline, MA to teaching at Tufts University, adult ed, summer camps and Elderhostel, David has taught photography, digital image editing, poetry, journalism, modern dance and SCUBA diving. Having grown up in Miami Beach David loves to wear tropical shirts, when he’s not in a CTN staff shirt. And this summer you might just catch him combining the two. He is thrilled to be a part of the CTN Media team and to be able to spend his summer at camp.

Summer Staff

Swimming Lessons

The Tel Noar staff undertakes with great care its responsibility to nurture and care for our campers. Each staff member works hard to serve as a role model and to make a positive impact each day. Tel Noar administrative and supervisory personnel are camping professionals and educators with many years of experience working with children. Many Tel Noar counselors were Tel Noar campers themselves, and each of those came through our Dor L’Dor capstone program which combines an Israel experience with counselor training. Some of our counselors come from abroad, including a contingent from Israel, which greatly enhances the camp experience. We select our staff for their experience, maturity, creativity, and sense of responsibility. Our summer staff attends a week-long Staff Orientation, in addition to individual specialty training to improve teaching skills. Ongoing training continues throughout the summer with seminars and mentoring.