MEET THE TEAM

HELEN BENNETT

Helen Bennett likes to do things that help people remember how much it’s worth it to trust and depend on each other. She is passionate about building resilient community rooted in ritual and focused on social justice, which has been the foundation for her work as a community organizer, facilitator, network weaver, and spiritual director for over 10 years. Helen provides coaching, training, culture and infrastructure support for Kavod House in Boston and for IfNotNow at the local and national levels. Helen organizes a transformative workshop for Jewish young adults on the Intersections of Antisemitism and Racism which is building a community of young Jews with a vision and tools for reclaiming trust, connection, and resilience. Helen organizes trainings with the Ayni Institute/Momentum Community and has worked with JOIN for Justice, in addition to founding and facilitating four iterations of the Lefty Shabbaton. Helen speaks and consults nationally on decentralized organization, leadership development, and liberatory movement culture and is featured on the Healing Justice Podcast. Helen grew up in Seattle, WA where she studied Community, Environment, and Planning at the University of Washington with a focus on cooperatives. Her ancestors came from Romania, Russia, Lithuania, and Poland.

SHIRLY BAHAR

These days, Shirly is working on her first book, Relating Pain: Documentary Cinema from Israel/Palestine, 2002-2012 (working title) forthcoming with IB Tauris, and originally written as a dissertation at New York University. Shirly teaches Critical Issues in Contemporary Art and mentors artists in their studio practice as part of the MFA program at Columbia University's School of Visual Arts. Shirly served as the Director of Public Programs at the American Jewish Historical Society at the Center for Jewish History in NY (2015-2019), where she was the first to curate art shows, and to introduce programming related to Israel/Palestine, Mizrahi Jews, Jews of Color, and the multitude of diasporic connections and antiracist solidarities stretching between the US and the Middle East. Previously Shirly founded the Mizrahi Film Series at NYU (2014-2017). Shirly has been curating member-based and public programs about Mizrahi cultures and activism with Jewish Voice for Peace’s NY Chapter and Jews for Racial and Economic Justice’s Mizrahi caucus since 2014.

KOACH FRAZIER

Koach Baruch Frazier, Au.D. is a healer and musician who is working towards the day everyone experiences liberation. He spent 14 years helping people reconnect with the world around them through better hearing. He currently spends his days providing love and support through revolutionary listening and spiritual leadership, traveling the country facilitating healing and transformation through music and workshops at the intersection of antisemitism and antiblackness. He earned his undergraduate degree from Saint Louis University and his doctorate from Central Michigan University. Dr. Frazier has served on the boards of the Missouri GSA Network and the Central Reform Congregation (CRC), where he is also a cantorial soloist. He lives in Philadelphia with his fiance, LaJuana, where his heart beats to the rhythm of tikvah, t'shuvah and tzedek.

DOVE KENT

Dove Kent, Senior Strategy Officer at Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice, has two decades of experience in grassroots organizing, political education, and movement building. As the executive director of Jews for Racial & Economic Justice from 2011 through 2016, Dove supported the organization to triple in size and win game-changing legislative victories for police accountability and workers rights through powerful local coalitions. Under Dove’s tenure, JFREJ grew into one of the strongest and most effective progressive Jewish organizations in the country, creating significant culture shifts within the Jewish community, New York and nationally. She has been published in What We Do Now: Standing Up for Your Values in Trump’s America (2017), Towards the “Other America”: Anti-racist Resources for White People Taking Action for Black Lives Matter (2015), Understanding Antisemitism: An Offering To Our Movement (2017), and in the Guardian, Ha'aretz, Tikkun, and other media outlets. Dove trains nationally on antisemitism and racism, and is the co-founder of Tzedek Lab, a national network of Jewish political educators, organizers and spiritual leaders building collective competency to politicize, transform, and inspire the Jewish community into collective action against racism, antisemitism, and white supremacy. She lives in Durham, North Carolina.

 

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