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Board

Scott Shay - President

Scott is actively involved in Jewish formal and informal education. As part of his involvement, he serves or has recently served as a board member of the UJA- Jewish Federation of New York, the Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education, the Jewish Agency, the Birthright Israel Steering Committee and the American Hebrew Academy. He is past chair of the Commission on Jewish Identity and Renewal of UJA - Jewish Federation and the Fund for Jewish Education (a joint venture of UJA and the Gross Life Monument Fund). Mr. Shay is the President of Chai Mitzvah and is the Chairman of the Lapid Advisory Board Coalition of non-profit Israel Teen trip groups. He, and his wife Susan, are the founders of the Jewish Youth Connection. He is the author of "Getting Our Groove Back: How to Energize American Jewry" (Devora, 2nd Edition 2008). Scott is a founder and is Chairman of the Board of Directors of Signature Bank since its inception. Signature Bank was ranked as the #1 bank in the US by the Forbes list of Best Banks in the United States. He was also a founding director of Bank United of Texas and Super Derivatives. Super Derivatives, an Israeli startup company, was sold in October 2014 to ICE in the largest ever sale of an Israeli financial technology company. Scott was a lead negotiator for the group that privatized Bank Hapoalim. He has served as Managing Director of Ranieri Partners and its predecessors since 1988. Scott received a B.A. degree in economics from Northwestern University in 1979 and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In 1980, he received a Master of Management degree from Northwestern's Kellogg Graduate School of Management.

Harvey Arfa - At Large

Harvey credits his Jewish day school education, his study at the Jewish Theological Seminary and a dozen years at Jewish summer camps for his commitment to the continuity of the Jewish community and Israel. He believes in the importance of continuing Jewish education for children and adults. The appeal of Chai Mitzvah is its ability to reach out to all Jews of all points of view and all levels of observance in order to bring them closer to their history, their traditions and to each other. Over the past decades Harvey has accepted leadership roles in Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun, United Jewish Appeal in New York, CLAL, Jewish Council for Public Affairs, MID-Manhattan Political Action Committee, Hillel New York, American Jewish Congress and American Friends of Yad Vashem. Harvey is a graduate of Hunter College, Columbia Law School, and Columbia Graduate School of Business and a lifelong resident of New York.  

Alan Mendelson - Treasurer 

Since early 2017, Alan has been the managing General Partner for the Connecticut Israel Opportunity Fund; its purpose is to invest in Israeli companies willing to set up a presence in Connecticut.  Prior to that, Alan was the Managing General Partner of Axiom Ventures Partners, which he founded in 1994 . Axiom had $200 million under management, investing in early-stage technology and healthcare companies. Alan worked for 25 years at Aetna in the Private Placement Department.  Among his many accomplishments, he has made 3.6 billion dollars in loans and started Aetna’s Direct Investment program, along with helping to create MBIA, the country's first and largest municipal bond insurer. Alan has been active in the Hartford Jewish community all his adult life. Currently, he is head of the Grants Committee of the Hartford Jewish Community Foundation, part of the Investment Committee of the Jewish Community Foundation and is with the Harold Grinspoon Foundation. He has served on the boards of the Hartford Jewish Federation and the Emanuel Synagogue. He was instrumental in building the Trinity College Hillel, where he is President of the Advisory Board. Alan has been on the Board of Chai Mitzvah since its founding in 2009.

Audrey Lichter - Executive Director

Audrey is the founding Executive Director of Chai Mitzvah, which was launched in 2009. She has been a professional Jewish educator for more than 30 years. Audrey is also the founding principle of Yachad, the award-winning community High School of Greater Hartford. As a lay leader, Audrey has been the recipient of many community awards and has been very involved locally and nationally in the Day School movement.

Tue, December 12 2017 24 Kislev 5778