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Assistant Rabbi Search

Welcome Rabbi Sigal

The Olam Tikvah Board of Directors is happy to share that Rabbi Ben Sigal will be joining our community this July as our new Assistant Rabbi. We look forward to getting to know Rabbi Sigal, his wife Elana Rubinstein, and their son Shai as they settle into life in Fairfax and at OT.

Thank you to the OT Assistant Rabbi Search Committee for their hard work, as well as the many members of the larger OT community who played a role in the process.

Meet the Search Committee

Brittanie Werbel, Chair

Brittanie first joined the Olam Tikvah Board in 2003, and served as Safety & Security Chair and Membership Chair before moving to the Executive Committee in 2010 and becoming president in 2018. Her favorite things about Congregation Olam Tikvah are the congregation’s uniquely warm nature and our lay-led services. Despite living in the DC area for more than half her life, Brittanie still considers herself a Denverite at heart and enjoys visits back to the Rocky Mountains. She enjoys swimming, hiking, and crossword puzzles. Brittanie and her husband, Dan, were married at Olam Tikvah in 1999 and promptly became members. Their teenagers, Jonah and Brandon, proudly identify as 4th generation OT members.

Jordan Baker

Jordan Baker was raised in Wantagh, New York, and moved to the DC region in 1998 to attend the University of Maryland, and then the George Mason University School of Law. He settled in Burke, Virginia, in 2006, and joined Olam Tikvah in 2009. He is married to Barbara and they have two sons, Andy and Matthew, ages 15 and 12. Jordan is a trademark attorney with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. He currently serves as the 2nd Vice President on the Olam Tikvah Executive Committee, and is a past president of the Olam Tikvah Men's Club and a former leader of its ABBA young fathers group.

Alan Gorowitz

Alan and his wife, Jennifer, joined Olam Tikvah in 2007 after spending over six years living in Germany. Their children, Aaron (16) and Emma (14) attend West Springfield High School and participate in OT Youth activities. Alan works for the U.S. Department of Defense, and Jennifer teaches at Olam Tikvah Preschool. Alan is passionate about providing opportunities for others to connect with the Jewish community and explore new ways to bring a little more happiness to our world.  At OT, he has served as President of the Board, led the young fathers group (ABBA) and served as Safety and Security Committee Chair. Growing up in Atlanta, Georgia, Alan served as president of his BBYO chapter and held regional leadership roles and later served on Atlanta Jewish Federation's Community Relations Committee. Alan plays guitar, loves to explore history, and likes to hike and bike the trails of Northern Virginia and beyond.

Hannah Kraushaar

Hannah has been a member of Olam Tikvah since 2021 and a lay leader in the local Northern Virginia Jewish community for over a decade. In addition to acting as the 2021-2022 Tzedakah Chair for Olam Tikvah Preschool's Board, she is currently the Secretary and Events Chair for Gesher Jewish Day School's Parent Teacher Organization. She also chaired Young Families programming at Agudas Achim Congregation prior to moving to Olam Tikvah. A native of northeast Ohio, Hannah moved to the DC area over twenty years ago and enjoys sharing her life here with her husband, Josh -- a Northern Virginia native, and their two children, Shana and Avi, with whom she spends much of her time at the Fairfax Ice Arena and is always eager to try out new and increasingly complicated challah braids.

Peter Maer

Peter Maer and his wife Elizabeth have been dedicated Olam Tikvah members for more than 40 years. Peter previously served on the Board of Directors and as Secretary. Peter and Elizabeth were co-chairs of the Olam Tikvah Capital Campaign that led to development and construction of the Social Hall, rabbinical offices, and other improvements to the building. The Maers are proud parents of Jonathan Maer and Beth Maer Magden who grew up at OT. They are the equally proud grandparents of Joshua, Levi, and Orli Maer and Shira and Talia Magden. Peter is a retired CBS News White House Correspondent. He covered the beat from the Carter to Obama administrations.

President Michelle Pearlstein, Ex Officio

Michelle serves as President of the Olam Tikvah Board of Directors. Passionate about Olam Tikvah and our broader Jewish community, she grew up at OT and her mom, Joan Isenberg Samuels, is still an active member. Michelle works as the Development Director for the Pozez JCC of Northern Virginia, was previously the Associate Director of Project Interchange at the American Jewish Committee, and taught Jewish and Israeli history at OT's religious school for several years.  She served on OT's Board for 9 years before joining the Executive Committee, chairing the Education and Membership committees, and serving as President of the preschool board. Michelle has been married to Dave for 25 years. They have two children in college, Jacob and Sara, and her mother-daughter rescue dogs are named Lily and Stella.

Rabbi David Kalender, Ex Officio
Wed, February 28 2024 19 Adar I 5784