Eleyna Fugman (she/her)
is a consummate Jewish community builder, living on Chinook land in Portland, OR.
Her work revolves around building and nurturing Jewish communities that are led and centered by Jews from populations that have been historically marginalized; women, queer and trans Jews, Jews of color and Jews not raised in Jewish communities. In 2017, Fugman co-founded the alternative grassroots Jewish community The Alberta Shul and in 2018 went on to co-found the leadership development organization TischPDX, whose mission is to “Bolster the Leadership of Young and Marginalized Jews in Portland, OR.”
Born and raised outside of Jewish community in rural northern California, Eleyna’s dedication to this work is based on her own experiences of seeking to find Jewish community in her 20’s as a young queer Jewish woman. She was eventually welcomed into Jewish community in the early 1990’s by other young adult and queer lay-led Shabbat minyanim in San Francisco.
After that, it took more than 15 years until she could see herself as a leader in the Jewish community. Since then, she has been working to support other young lay leaders, volunteers and service leaders who create alternative Jewish portals for their peers to enter into Jewish community.
Eleyna is also the co-founder of SURJ (Showing Up for Racial Justice) PDX and has served on the boards of OPAL Environmental Justice, The Institute for Judaic Studies and The Alberta Shul.
She has a BA from Brown University and has completed two years of Jewish Studies coursework and pre-rabbinic education at Portland State University, Aleph, Hadar, Drisha, Jewish Theological Seminary and Reconstructionist Rabbinical College.
She loves hosting Shabbat meals, singing Jewish music and mushroom hunting in Oregon’s temperate rainforests.
Metasabiya ‘Tammy’ Habteyes (she/her)
started as a fellow in TischPDX’s 2020 Emerging Jewish Leadership Incubator. Since then, she has joined the staff as a Program Director to build and support the new Alumni Support Program and co-facilitate the Emerging Jewish Leadership Incubator. Metasabiya’s background is in broadcast media with a focus on grassroots/DIY media created by folks from marginalized communities and radical activists. Metasabiya also co-founded the Portland Jews of Color Collective to create a hub for JOCs to celebrate holidays, share rituals, organize/ attend community programming events and workshops that speak to (and celebrate) the intersections of Jews of Color.
Rabbi Ariel Stone (she/they)
has been the spiritual leader of Congregation Shir Tikvah for almost two decades. A caring and vibrant leader, she is an exceptionally knowledgeable teacher of Torah and a recognized scholar of Jewish mysticism.
A native of Orlando Florida, Rabbi Stone studied at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Jerusalem and New York (1986-1991). While there she was a CLAL Rabbinical Fellow, taught first year Hebrew, and helped to establish the HUC-JIR student-run soup kitchen. After two years at Temple Beth Israel in Miami Florida, in 1993 she accepted the invitation of the World Union for Progressive Judaism to teach and organize in Ukraine. She guided Congregation HaTikvah of Kiev and assisted in the establishment of progressive congregations throughout Ukraine that continue to flourish today. Between1996-2001, she was associate rabbi at Congregation Beth Israel in Portland. In 2001 she was awarded a two-year fellowship at the Mandel School for Educational and Social Leadership.
From 2003 to the present, she has served as the independent Portland east side Congregation Shir Tikvah’s Rabbi. She found the Reform movement to no longer be a good fit, and considers herself post-denominational. In 2010, she completed her doctorate at the (non-denominational) Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies under the direction of Dr. Byron Sherwin.
Rabbi Stone served as Oregon Board of Rabbi’s President from 2007-2009 and 2015-2017. In that capacity she co-founded Oregon’s Jewish indigent burial society Hesed Shel Emet, contributed to the recreation of the Portland Jewish Free Loan, helped to lead the creation of Portland’s new community mikveh Rachel’s Well, and led in the creation and filling of a new position of Portland Jewish Community Chaplain. In 2017 she became the convener of the Portland Interfaith Clergy Resistance, which focuses upon supporting efforts for police reform in the city of Portland and seeks to bear moral witness in the streets during protests. In 2018 she led the creation of an innovative outreach to unaffiliated Jews called TischPDX. She has served as adjunct faculty at Portland State University and Willamette University of Salem, Oregon. In 2018 she was honored to be the recipient of the City of Portland Human Rights Commission’s Lifetime Achievement Award.
Derekh Travers (she/him)
enjoys flexing facilitator skills for various efforts, including trans liberation, Jewish gatherings, queer sexual wholeness, and racial and gender justice. Gardening and eating sustain him, alongside bicycling everywhere, reading voraciously, raising whole and rowdy kids, and time with beloveds. Derekh is grateful to ancestors and family – blood and chosen, living and passed on – for connection and survival and a possibility of thriving. She loves living in this beautiful landscape, the unceded traditional homelands of Chinook, Multnomah, Kathlamet, Clackamas, Tualatin and related tribes, and has called Portland ‘home’ since grade school.
Blair Denniberg (she/her)
Blair is a proud Jewish lesbian that has made Portland her home for the past six years. Newly rediscovering her Jewish heritage, Blair is looking forward to diving headfirst into everything TischPDX has to offer as a member of cohort #2. When she is not busy championing radical inclusion at her museum gig or hosting a queer Shabbat, Blair loves to explore PNW swimming holes and spend time with her cat, Cowboy and partner, Rebecca.
Aviva McClure (she/her/they/them)
Aviva founded Our Turn as a response to organizations needing to connect with change makers in the arts community for better outcomes. After 20 years working as a K-12 teacher, administrator, artist, and activist; Aviva journeyed outside of institutions to design programs and professional development that moves justice to the forefront of policy and practice. Our Turn seeks to bridge the gaps between social learning, academia, and open spaces. In addition to local partnerships, Aviva has also developed programs internationally.
Rachel Stern (she/her)
Rachel began organizing and educating in the Jewish community when she was a teenager, and has been teaching yoga professionally since 2006. She loves weaving Jewish stories, themes, and values into her yoga teaching, which creates a fully embodied practice of Judaism. Rachel loves to hold space for students of all ages to experience life fully through their physical, spiritual, emotional, and energetic bodies, and believes that this work is most effective when wrapped in humor and joy. Through the yoga practice we discover that we are lovable and worthy of goodness despite our perceived flaws, and that when we are connected to source we are so much more powerful than when we are not. Rachel offers an avenue to deepen the spiritual body of this work and to ignite that spark of connection in Portland’s Jewish community through Portland Jewish Yoga Collective; a program she started at TischPDX.
Sonia Marie Leikam (she/her)
Sonia Marie Leikam (she/her) is a versatile professional who brings a deep understanding of non-profit operations, systems, programs and fundraising to the table. She brings experience as an educator, advocate for social justice and community organizer to her work. She and her husband also own Leikam Brewing, a Kosher craft brewery. In that capacity, she serves on the board of the Oregon Brewers Guild and in the Pink Boots Society, an organization empowering women in the beer industry. As the grandchild of a partisan in the French resistance, and a first generation American, she spent her youth traveling between the San Francisco Bay Area and Southern France. Bilingual and multicultural she lives with her partner, 3 children and 4 cats.
Shoshana Guggenheim (she/her)
Artist in Residence
Shoshana Gugenheim (she/her) is an artist, Torah scribe, essayist, and educator crossing disciplines to bring diverse groups of people together in intimate and unexpected ways. A social agitator, immersed in Jewish tradition and ritual, inspired by craft and beauty, her studio and collaborative works invite participants into borderlands. She is among the first of contemporary Jewish women to work as a traditional Torah scribe and is the founding director of Women of the Book which premiered at the Jerusalem Biennale 2015. Shoshana’s diverse works address the place of women in traditional Jewish practice, contemplations and conversations on death and dying and other loss, ethical parchment making and place-based knowledge. Shoshana spent 20 years living in Israel where she worked with Jewish and Arab communities to bridge communication and create dialogue through art making. Today she resides with her family in Portland, OR where she is an MFA candidate in Contemporary Art Practice at Portland State University.
Shoshana’s work has been supported by Targum Shlishi, The Hadassah Brandeis Institute, The Eugene and Estelle Ferkauf Foundation, The Eicholz Foundation, The Simon Benson Foundation and many other private donors and institutions.
David Shratter (he/him)
Artist, Educator, Mentor
David Shratter (he/him) has worked as a professional artist for the past 38 years. His work is about creating intimacy with the world around through direct observation. His oil paintings and pen and ink drawings include still life, interiors, streetscapes, portraits and figure drawings. Alongside his artistic life, he has worked as a librarian at Lewis & Clark College for 27 years. During those years, he served as a supervisor and mentor to many students, and is delighted to be in that role again with TischPDX cohort members.
He is a devoted student of Torah which has given him a lens through which he can look at and question life’s meaning.
Bio and image coming soon.
Bio and image coming soon.