The leaders of Limmud Seattle have come together to create a dynamic, rich experience for our community. The folks below meet monthly as a Steering Committee in addition to any board and/or team duties listed.

Interested in helping to lead Limmud Seattle 2019? Email info@limmudseattle.org.


Deb Arnold, Board Vice-President, Founding Co-Chair.

Deb moved from the Upper West Side of Manhattan to Seattle in 2004. She is a member of Kavana Cooperative and Congregation Beth Shalom and affiliates with a growing list of fantastic organizations in the community. Having experienced Limmud in the UK and elsewhere, Deb knows how powerful, exciting and meaningful Limmud is and wanted to share that with our beautifully diverse Jewish community. Little did she know that launching Limmud in Seattle would, in and of itself, be powerful, exciting and meaningful beyond her wildest dreams. “Get involved – join us! – and you’ll see what I mean.”

Ron DeChene, Board Secretary.

Ron has been in Seattle since 1987. He grew up in Connecticut and went to school in Wisconsin. He has a diverse religious education, with a degree in Bible and Pastoral Administration. Ron has more than 10 years of volunteering in adult education, with several as the Chair of Adult Education for an award winning adult education program at Congregation Beth Shalom. He is a community educator of Judaic studies and religion. He has been thrilled to be a part of Limmuds across North America and the UK.

danyel-by-glein.jpgDanyel Fisher, Web-Tech Team Lead.

Danyel Fisher came to Seattle in 2004 from Irvine, California, but has bounced around through communities in Berkeley, Washington DC, and St. Louis. He is a member of Kavana, and joined Limmud because he is always on the hunt for great Jewish education.

Karen Friedman, Board Treasurer.

Karen moved to Seattle in 1980 from Northern California. She is a member of Congregation Beth Shalom and has served on the boards of Beth Shalom and Seattle Jewish Community School. Karen works with nonprofit organizations as a Relationship Banking Officer for a community bank. She is inspired by the idea that Limmud will bring individuals from our diverse Jewish community together.

Robert Hovden, Board President, Founding Co-Chair.

Robert has been in Seattle since 1988. He grew up in Hawaii and California and still has an extensive collection of Hawaiian shirts. He has had the privilege of leading his synagogue's award-winning Mitzvah Corps program which provides families support during their times of need. He is also a board member with a local nonprofit that empowers homeless youth to transition from the streets. Additionally, he teaches the monthly Learners Minyan at his shul. His love of Jewish education and culture are what led him to co-found Limmud Seattle.

Julie Kohl, Board Member, Steering Committee Member.

Julie Kohl moved to Seattle in 2011 from Silicon Valley as an empty - nester, with her husband , Glen, and their two new golden doodle puppies, Rollo and Yofi. In California, Julie worked as a pediatrician, performed Brit Milah and served on the boards of Hillel at Stanford and her children's Jewish day school. She is a graduate of Wexner Heritage and has attended programs a the Shalom Hartman Institute and Pardes in Jerusalem. Since moving to Seattle Julie has become an avid paddle-boarder and meditator, and a clumsy yogi. She belongs to Congregation Beth Shalom and Kavana Cooperatve. She is currently participating in the Kivvun program with the Institute for Jewish Spirituality and volunteers with Kline Galland Hospice. She is excited to bring Limmud to Seattle to share her love of Jewish learning in a pluralistic environment.

Margot Kravette, Marketing Team Lead.

Margot moved to Seattle from Washington DC in 1979. She works as the manager of emergency preparedness at Seattle Children’s. She is very involved in the Jewish community at Congregation Beth Shalom and as a board member of Jewish Family Service. Twenty-five years ago Margot formed a group of volunteers to provide support to Jewish families that come to Seattle for medical care. Starting with 5 friends, the group now has over 200 volunteers. Margot is excited to help bring a program to Seattle that will bring Jews together from throughout the Puget Sound region.

Tamar Libicki, Volunteer Development Team Lead.

Tamar Libicki moved to Seattle from Columbus, Ohio in 2003 to attend UW. She is currently a member of Beth Shalom, and is involved in Limmud Seattle because she loves Jewish learning and community.


Gillian Locascio, Steering Commitee Member.

Gillian was born and raised in Tacoma, but spent a formative decade organizing around community health, environmental justice, and human rights in the Southeast US and Central America. She currently directs the Washington Fair Trade Coalition. In Seattle, Gillian facilitates a high school group for Kavana, where they look at current events from a Jewish perspective, and teaches Jewish history and ethics with Kadima's middle school program. In her free time, she also organizes with young adults in the Jewish community around racial justice, reclaiming ritual, and peer-to-peer learning. She was lucky enough to be living in New Orleans when they founded Limmud NOLA, and immediately fell in love with the quirky, cross-community, Jewish learning-fest -- where else can you try your hand at ten different challah braids, learn to make your own Passover zine, practice Klezmer dance, learn about Jewish race relations in the South, explore how Jewish texts relate to gardening, and take a feminist journey through Jewish cookbooks and the women who wrote them? Limmud Seattle, here we come!

Lily Lozovsky Stute, Participant Care Team Lead.

Lily is a Nonprofit Management Consultant and an Executive Coach. Her work focuses on personal and organizational branding, strategy, and program design as well as one on one work coaching individuals. Lily has a passion for community organizing and a background in experiential Jewish education. Lily is a volunteer for the Crisis Text Line and believes strongly in dispelling stigmas around mental health. She lives in Seattle with her husband Gary and sweet daughter Tagel (pronounced like Michelle).

Kate Speizer, Steering Committee Member.

Kate arrived in Seattle in 2013 from Ithaca, NY. She is the Adult Engagement Coordinator at Temple De Hirsch Sinai, and is involved with Limmud Seattle because she really loves Jewish learning, especially when it’s self-driven, creative, accessible, and fun.

Marianne Tatom, Programming Team Co-Lead.

Marianne Tatom left her native Texas for Seattle in 2010. She is a member of Congregation Beth Shalom. She loves the diversity of the programming at Limmud.


Karen Treiger, Steering Committee Member

Karen I. Treiger is a writer, currently working on a book about Sam and Esther Goldberg’s experience during the Holocaust. Earlier in her career she practiced law with Thompson, Howle Vaughn, specializing in Elder Law. She lives in Seattle and is a founding member of Minyan Ohr Chadash, a modern orthodox in Seward Park. She is on the Steering Committee of Limmud to bring this amazing educational and community building opportunity to Seattle.

Rochelle Wynne, Programming Team Co-Lead.

Before moving here to Seattle, Rochelle had been active in both religious and secular education for 40 years as both teacher and administrator. She had also been active in planning education conferences. When it was obvious that Limmud was coming to Seattle, it was an exciting opportunity to become active again.

Cara Abrams-Simonton, Programming Team Co-Lead.

Cara, a northwest native, moved to Seattle in August 2016 after living in Jerusalem, San Francisco and Manhattan. She is a Jewish educator who received her Masters of Jewish Education through the Pardes Educators Program. Cara currently teaches 4th and 5th grade Judaics at JDS in Bellevue, as well as working in various educational programs at Kavana Cooperative. As a life long learner and self-identified "Jewish nerd," Cara was thrilled to hear that Limmud was coming to Seattle and quickly joined the Programming Team. Cara has been inspired by her fellow volunteers and is thankful to have made many new friends.

Judy Harel, Participant Care Team Co-Lead.

Judy was born and raised in Seattle. Her greatest passions are her family and Israel, and they are often intertwined. (Though some may argue that her real passion is coffee, always searching for the best cappuccino wherever she goes!) Judy spent several years living in Jerusalem studying Hebrew and as a guide for Jewish youth groups visiting Israel, later journeying back and forth between Seattle and Haifa, where her husband’s family lived, until settling back in Seattle. Judy is a member of Congregation Ezra Bessaroth and a lifetime member of Hadassah, holding many leadership and mentoring roles over the years, strengthening her ties to Israel and providing inspiration for helping the greater community. She was a volunteer with Puget Sound Friends of the LAM Foundation for 10 years, helping raise much needed funds for LAM research. Bringing our diverse Jewish communities together for a cultural and educational experience is what drew her to get involved in Limmud Seattle.