Our JLC Staff


Rabbi Yechiel Hoffman, EdD, Director of YLE

Yechiel Hoffman empowers people, across all generations and backgrounds, to enrich their personal and professional journeys through meaningful learning experiences. As Director of Youth Learning and Engagement, Hoffman provides organizational, educational, and spiritual leadership to the Los Angeles’ Temple Beth Am community. He most recently served as LimmudLA’s Executive Director, connecting Jews through volunteerism, community organizing, and cross-communal learning experiences.

As an organizational leader, Hoffman employs his professional and academic experience to support innovation and growth for both start-up endeavors and legacy institutions. Hoffman excels at animating networks and fostering meaningful engagement and purposeful relationships.

Hoffman began his professional journey in the film industry, running a comedy club, the Laugh Factory, and serving as a literary manager for writers and comedians—and then he turned to Jewish education. An educational innovator, Hoffman created the Teens@LimmudLA Presenters program, the Viral Judaism Project, and the High School Jewish Futures Project.

Most recently, Hoffman co-founded JEDLAB, a field-wide Jewish education network, promoting relationships and collective inquiry, collaboration, and experimentation to further the quality and growth of Jewish education. Hoffman serves of on the board of Jumpstart, transforming the broader Jewish community through social entrepreneurship. As a community activist, he serves as a rabbinic adviser, activist and outreach expert for issues related to LGBT inclusion, Women's issues, and education. As a doctoral candidate, in education, from Northeastern University, Hoffman applies organizational leadership and learning models to purpose-driven networks of learners and activists.

Amir Orbach, JLC Director

Amir was born and raised in Israel, in the city of Ra’anana. After completing his IDF service he moved to the United States to pursue a career in acting, first in New York and then in Los Angeles. He received his BA in Theater from The New School University in New York City, and his Masters of Education and Bachelors of Literature in Hebrew Letters from the American Jewish University in Los Angeles.

As a dynamic educational leader, Amir’s passion for Jewish learning and education stems from his love of learning and children. His background as a musical theater performer and student of theater and drama fostered his approach to integrating experiential education with a core commitment to Jewish knowledge and Hebrew language. Amir’s experience in the field spans more than ten years, including teaching and serving as an educational leader in a variety of formal and informal learning environments. Amir most recently served as the Director of Education at IKAR, and has served as the Assistant Director of Education, Youth Director, Hebrew and Judaic teacher, and drama instructor at Congregation Tikvat Jacob Beth Torah in Manhattan Beach.

Farrah Noah, Operations Coordinator

Farrah Noah comes to Temple Beth Am as the Operations Coordinator in the Youth Learning & Engagement department with vast experience as a non-profit professional. First, as the Assistant Director for Imago Relationships International, where she managed membership relations for over 1000 members world-wide and planned 3 international conferences; and more recently, at the BJE as the Program Administrator for two endowment programs that supported Jewish Day Schools in the Los Angeles area: the Jim Joseph High School Affordability Initiative and Generations LA.

Farrah lives in Los Angeles, where she grew up and attended Jewish Day School. She has a BA in Political Science from the University of Arizona and an MA in Teaching from Boston University. She has two young daughters who are proud students at the Jacob Pressman Academy of Temple Beth Am. She is also a devoted fan of the New England Patriots and wishes she had more time to read political thrillers.


Kitah Gan (Kindergarten)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned to see who will be teaching Kitah Gan...

Kitah Alef (1st Grade)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned to see who will be teaching Kitah Alef…

Kitah Bet (2nd Grade)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned to see who will be teaching Kitah Bet…

Kitah Gimel (3rd Grade)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned to see who will be teaching Kitah Gimel…

Kitah Dalet (4th Grade)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned to see who will be teaching Kitah Dalet…

Kitah Hay (5th Grade) Marcy Stieglitz

Marcy Stieglitz aka “Morah Marcy” understands that “Inquiry” is the key to true learning and seeks to create rich environments where students can learn together. Marcy holds a Masters of Education from the American Jewish University. As a program director in the field of Early Education and Jewish Education, she participates in both local and prestigious national networks. She has experience as an educator for preschool and elementary age students. When she is not pouring all of her effort into her passion of Jewish Education, Marcy is spending quality time with her husband Paul and their three children. She enjoys biking, hiking and reading all kinds of books.

Kitah Vav (6th Grade)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned to see who will be teaching Kitah Vav...


Hebrew and Hebrew Through Movement, Kitah Gan- Bet (K-2nd Grade) Rachel Cohen

Rachel Cohen grew up in a small village in Israel and started her teaching career when she was 19, teaching troops, while serving in the Israeli army. Her formal teaching education started in Tel Aviv, where she worked with children with special needs. Rachel immigrated to the United States in 2000 and continued to pursue her education in Childhood Development at West Los Angeles College. In 2007 she joined Pressman Academy ECC as a lead teacher. Pressman Academy has become a second home to Rachel and she enjoys her work very much. Rachel’s passion is teaching Ivrit (Hebrew) with dances, songs, play, and utilizing the all five senses. She loves teaching and enjoys the opportunity to learn from her students. Rachel is committed to making learning fun and meaningful for all of her students.

Hebrew & Hebrew Through Movement Specialist Kitah Gimel – Vav (3rd-6th Grade)

We are currently finalizing teachers for the 2018-19 school year, stay tuned!

Kitah Bet & Gimel (2nd & 3rd Grade) Hebrew Lab Specialist, Alisa Lerner

Alisa has taught for many years. Of those many years she taught at Pressman Academy Day School and JLC (or formerly known as the religious school) for nine years. Alisa is passionate about teaching and is always finding innovative ways to engage the students, raise their energy levels and increase their participation. She uses a variety of creative approaches in her teaching to plant the seeds for a love of Israel and the rich traditions of Judaism. Alisa works tirelessly and effortlessly to create a community in her classroom. She is encouraging and helps students to see all positive aspects of their learning and it is truly a loving environment.

Alisa attended university at the Seminar Liventzky, a teaching Academy in Tel Aviv, Israel. Subsequently she received a Masters of Education and Bible from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem. In January 2008, she received the Lainer Distinguished Educator Award, from the Bureau Of Jewish Education. Alisa is excited about working with the Kitah Bet children, this year, and every year!

Parent Involvement

There are many opportunities for parents to get involved in the JLC. Parents are encouraged to attend and participate in family programs, parents only social events, and attend our Sunday Havdallah service, every Sunday at the JLC. Parents who are looking to get involved by volunteering as a room parent or helping to organize other events throughout the year should contact our JLC Committee Chair, Nancy Cohen. Please email jlc@tbala.org to connect today!


JLC Staff

Rabbi Yechiel Hoffman, EdD
Director of YLE

Amir Orbach,
JLC Director

Farrah Noah,
Operations Coordinator