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Towson Hillel Staff

Rabbi Alex Salzberg | Executive Director

Rabbi Alex Salzberg (MA ’11) is excited to be back on campus as the new Executive Director of Towson Hillel. He grew up in Baltimore, about 15 minutes from TU’s campus. He left to spend a gap year in Israel and earn an undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University. He then came back to Baltimore and began his relationship with Towson University. After earning his master’s degree in Jewish Education from the Baltimore Hebrew Institute at Towson University, he was ordained a rabbi at the Jewish Theological Seminary. For the next six years, he was the rabbi of the Pelham Jewish Center in New York, where he focused on education for all ages and building relationships within the synagogue and between the synagogue and the wider community. Ten years away from Baltimore was enough, and Rabbi Alex and his family decided that it was time to come home. Rabbi Alex believes that community is the essence of Jewish life and sees his role at TU Hillel as helping students find their place in the Jewish community, both on campus and for the rest of their lives. When not on campus, Rabbi Alex is home with his spouse and 3 children, baking bread, or woodworking.

Jamie Aaron | Assistant Director

Jamie Aaron (she/her) is thrilled to join the Towson Hillel team as the new Assistant Director. Jamie comes to Towson Hillel from Beth Am Synagogue where she spent the last three years as the Director of Congregational Engagement and Programming. Prior to her time at Beth Am, Jamie spent five-and-a-half years in Houston, Texas, where she worked to engage youth and teens throughout the Jewish community. Within her various roles, Jamie oversaw the middle school day camp experience at the Evelyn Rubenstien JCC, the experiential education initiatives at Congregation Emanu El, spearheaded the organization of the Houston Jewish Youth Professionals Network (a community of practice that brings together the professionals working to engage youth and teens in greater Houston), and other programs which helped shape her understanding of community engagement. A native of Montgomery County, Jamie is a proud product of congregational education (Kehilat Shalom in Gaithersburg and Congregation B’nai Tzedek in Potomac), youth group (DC Council BBYO and Seaboard USY), and camp (Capital Camps, summers 1998-2009). These foundational experiences led Jamie to pursue her passion for Jewish education and engagement after earning her Bachelor’s in History and Historic Preservation at the College of Charleston in Charleston, SC. Jamie is so grateful to be building upon her own treasured experiences in the Jewish community as she finds new and exciting ways to engage, build community with, and support students through TU Hillel. Jamie loves being back in her home state and when she’s not at Hillel, you’ll be able to find her enjoying the changing seasons, rooting for the Orioles and the Capitals, reading her latest BookTok find,and spending time with her family.

McKenna Bates
McKenna Bates | Director of Israel Engagement IACT

McKenna Bates grew up in southern Virginia, just a few minutes drive from sunny Virginia Beach. A lifelong Girl Scout and Jewish activist, McKenna combines the lessons she learned from her Gold Award project, her extensive leadership training, and long history of community service work to better her communities. She has been to Israel over eight times and loves to talk about it- so much so, she’s currently pursuing a Masters in Israel Education through the iCenter via George Washington University! During her undergraduate studies at George Mason University, McKenna was highly involved in leadership in the Jewish community and studied the Israeli Palestinian Conflict. Throughout her time at Towson Hillel, McKenna has enjoyed being a Friedman Fellow, a Katz Innovation Fellow, a Jewish Changemaker, and a member of Masterclass Israel. When not creating programs, recruiting for Birthright, meeting students for coffee, or leading the Israel Learning Fellowship, you can find McKenna drawing, arguing about why Star Wars isn’t actually sci-fi, or schmoozing in full costume at the Maryland Renaissance Festival!

Jewish Faculty & Staff Association (JFSA)

The Jewish Faculty and Staff Association (JFSA) works to provide Jewish cultural and dynamic programs for faculty, staff, students and guests on campus. The JFSA raises awareness around the Jewish community, experiences, services and opportunities on campus.

JFSA Goals

  • Raise awareness around the Jewish community, experiences, services and opportunities on campus
  • Create a micro-community for Jewish faculty and staff on campus
  • Be a draw for new and old Jewish faculty and staff to get involved with programs beyond regular teaching and class schedule
  • Build the Jewish brand, visibility and understanding of Jewish community on campus to larger, local audiences

For more info, visit JFSA, contact Jill Max, Director of Baltimore Hebrew Institute, or, Rabbi Alex Salzberg, Executive Director of Towson Hillel.