JAAN is led by a collaborative advisory council comprised of professionals, clergy, and community members who bring diverse expertise, experiences, and a shared mission to support Jewish communities impacted by the addiction crisis.
Marla Kaufman is the Executive Director and Founder of Jewish Addiction Awareness Network. After her own family’s decade-plus experience of navigating resources to support their son’s journey from addiction to recovery, Marla has dedicated her life’s work to silencing stigma and raising awareness. Since beginning JAAN in 2016, Marla has traveled to Jewish communities across the United States to share innovative programs, proven strategies, and best practices to help communities collaboratively address addiction and related mental health challenges from a Jewish perspective. She also provides Jewish cultural sensitivity training to medical and treatment professionals, and supports Jewish families in crisis and those desiring to integrate their recovery with their Judaism.
Marla served as Chair of the Orange County (CA) Jewish Community Addiction Task Force for four years and as a member of BaMidbar Wilderness Therapy’s board of directors for five years. She began her career as Director of Communications and Recruitment for a financial services company, followed by serving as Director of Development for a Jewish day school, and later worked for a therapeutic wilderness program for adolescents creating marketing strategies and family support programs.
Marla has a BA in sociology with a minor in American Studies from California State University, Fullerton.
Sharon Burns-Carter, C.A.C.
Sharon Burns-Carter has extensive experience working with individuals and families suffering from substance use disorders. Sharon is the Substance Use Outreach Coordinator at the Rales Jewish Family Services in Boca Raton, Florida, and a facilitator of weekly experiential groups at the Wellness Resource Center. She currently serves on the compliance committee for the Florida Association of Recovery Residences, the board of the Palm Beach County HUB Recovery Community Organization, and as a member of the Palm Beach County Behavioral Health Coalition Opiate Steering Committee.
Sharon co-founded the Wellness Resource Center, holding a variety of positions from 1998-2005, including Chief Operating Officer, and consulted with Caron Renaissance Treatment Program between 2006-2008, assisting in the development of their family restructuring program. Sharon has served on the boards of several charitable foundations as well as the Jewish Recovery Center of Boca Raton and Congregation Kol Ami, a Reconstructionist Jewish Community.
Sharon is certified by the Institute for Experiential Therapy at On-Site Institute, a Certified Alcoholism Counselor and Addiction Professional from Marymount Manhattan College, a Family Recovery Mentor, Recovery Residence Administrator in the state of Florida, a trained Peer Support Specialist, and a SMART Recovery Facilitator. She is grateful to be a person in long-term recovery and the proud mom of two sons in recovery.
Jory Hanselman-Mayschak is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of BaMidbar, an organization that addresses mental health and wellness in the Jewish community through a three-pronged approach focusing on prevention, education, and treatment.
Jory started her career in the world of Jewish camping when she joined the Ramah in the Rockies team during its inaugural season. Since then, Jory has worked in a variety of wilderness therapy and experiential education programs. In 2016, Jory returned to Ramah in the Rockies to develop and launch BaMidbar Wilderness Therapy, the nation’s first Jewish wilderness therapy program. In 2021, Jory led BaMidbar through its transition from a fiscally sponsored entity to an independent 501(c)3. Jory has dedicated her career to empowering and inspiring youth, and is thrilled to work in an environment where her three greatest passions - experiential learning, mental health and wellness, and Jewish tradition - intersect.
Jory has a Bachelor of Science degree from Tufts University in Environmental Science and Philosophy, a Masters Degree in Public Administration with a concentration in Nonprofit Leadership from University of Colorado, and a Certificate in Innovation and Entrepreneurship from Stanford University. She is also a Wexner Field Fellow.
Rabbi Aaron Spiegel, D.Min.
Rabbi Aaron Spiegel is a transdenominational rabbi, leader, and strategic planner in IT, nonprofit management, and digital consulting, as well as a consultant, published author, and seasoned public speaker. Aaron is President of the Synagogue Studies Institute, collecting and interpreting data about American synagogues, and the Interim Executive Director at the Indianapolis Jewish Community Relations Council. As a person in long-term recovery, he facilitates the Indy JACS Jewish recovery meeting, now in its 16th year.
From 1999-2021, Aaron worked as a director for the Indianapolis Center for Congregations, a Lilly Endowment funded project, where he provided resource consulting with congregations on better use of technology for enhancing congregational effectiveness and efficiency, strategic planning, building issues, finance, and leadership. Before relocating to Indianapolis in 1996, he served several congregations in South Florida.
Aaron has a BA in Comparative Theology from the Union Institute & University (Miami, FL), rabbinic ordination from The Rabbinical Academy of Mesifta Adath Wolkowisk, and a D.Min. in congregational studies from Hartford International University.
Rabbi Paul Steinberg
Rabbi Paul Steinberg is a nationally recognized transformative educator. Currently, he proudly serves as Rabbi at Congregation Kol Shofar in Tiburon, California. Paul previously served as Principal of a Jewish day school in Dallas, and the Senior Educator at Valley Beth Shalom in Encino, California. He has published many articles on Jewish thought and education, as well as five books including, Study Guide to Jewish Ethics and the three-volume series Celebrating the Jewish Year, which earned the National Jewish Book Award.
After completing treatment for alcoholism, workaholism, and depression, Paul served as the Beit T’Shuvah Community Rabbi (2014-2017), a synagogue community with an addiction treatment center. He then published his most recent book, Recovery, the 12 Steps, and Jewish Spirituality: Reclaiming Hope, Courage and Wholeness, which tells his personal struggles with addiction, as well as provides the first comprehensive approach to integrating Jewish spirituality with the principles of Alcoholics Anonymous.
Paul has a BA in psychology and Judaic Studies from the University of Arizona, and several graduate degrees from American Jewish University (AJU) in Los Angeles, including a MA in Rabbinic Studies, and ordination as a Conservative rabbi from AJU’s Zeigler School of Rabbinic Studies. He is a doctoral candidate in education at Jewish Theological Seminary.
Rabbi K’vod Wieder
Rabbi K’vod Wieder is Rabbi at Temple Beth El of South Orange County in Aliso Viejo, California, a progressive congregation that is affiliated with both the Reform and Conservative movements. For over 25 years, K’vod has been teaching classes, leading retreats, and counseling students in meditation, prayer, and creative forms of Jewish spirituality. He previously served as the Assistant Director of Chochmat HaLev – a Jewish meditation center in Berkeley, Program Director for Sonoma County Jewish Federation, Director of the B’nai Tzedek Teen Philanthropy Program for the Harold Grinspoon Foundation, Program Director for Elat Chayyim Center of Jewish Spirituality, and trained and interned with Jewish Funds For Justice and One L.A in the area of congregation-based community organizing.
K’vod has a BA in psychology from UC Santa Cruz and a MA in Transpersonal Psychology (counseling) from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology. He completed his rabbinic studies at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in Los Angeles at American Jewish University, earning ordination as a Conservative rabbi.
Addiction is a Jewish issue. We’re working to address it.