Board of Directors

The Foundation is proud to have a diverse Board of Directors who bring significant communal experience to the Foundation's governance. Their broad, highly credentialed professional training and expertise ensures that Board functions will be conducted with rigor and accountability. These Directors represent a spectrum of denominational practice and play active roles in various forms of Jewish education spanning congregational education, day schools, Israel experience, camping, and youth philanthropy.

Board of Directors

Dan Safier

Dan_Safier_head_shot_190As Chairman of the Board of the Jim Joseph Foundation, Dan Safier guides the Foundation in fulfilling the philanthropic mission of its founder, Jim Joseph, who believed in providing compelling and effective learning experiences for young Jews in the US. Dan is the past Chair of the San Francisco Jewish Community Endowment Fund where he also served on the Federation Board of Trustees, the Executive Committee, the Finance & Administration Committee, the Investment Committee, the Building Committee, and he formerly served as Chair of the Capital Planning Committee.  He has previously served on...More

David Agger

David AggarDavid Agger currently manages an investment partnership, Metropolis Partners, Inc., offering direct investment in long lived real assets including energy production, distribution and efficiency as well as commercial real estate. He has a longstanding record of community service in the Bay Area where he currently serves as Trustee and Member of the Executive Committee and immediate past Chair of both the Investment and Development Committees of the University of San Francisco, is a Trustee and current Chairman of the Investment Committee of the Bernard Osher Foundation and Bernard Osher Jewish Philanthropies (a...More

Dr. Dvora Joseph Davey

Dr. Dvora Joseph Davey has served on the Jim Joseph Foundation Board of Directors since 2006 as a Family Director. She is Jim Joseph’s eldest child. Dvora has over fifteen years of experience in the development, management and evaluation of public health programs. Dvora became passionate about the health of African women and children while serving as a Peace Corps in Gabon, Africa. Currently, she lives with her family in Los Angeles. Prior to Los Angeles, Dvora worked for over ten years in Africa, most recently as the Country...More

Alisa Robbins Doctoroff

Alisa_Doctoroff_informal_photo_190Alisa Robbins Doctoroff is President of UJA-Federation of New York. She previously served as Chair of the Board, as well as Chair of the Commission on Jewish Identity and Renewal after years of involvement with its work, particularly in Israel and with young people. Ms. Doctoroff is a past president of the Abraham Joshua Heschel School and was instrumental in founding its high school division in 2001. She is active on the boards of a wide spectrum of organizations that promote engagement with Jewish life and identity through education, culture and...More

Barry Finestone

barry_finestone_127x190Barry Finestone is President and CEO of the Jim Joseph Foundation. Previously, Barry was Executive Director of the Lisa and John Pritzker Family Fund. He moved to the Bay Area in 2010 to become CEO of the JCC of San Francisco, where he oversaw dramatic growth and built it into the second largest JCC in the country. Earlier in his career he served as executive director of the two-campus Isaac M. Wise Temple, transforming its information technology systems and earning the Harris K. and Alice F. Weston Award for Outstanding Leadership. Barry’s first job out...More

Joshua Joseph

Joshua_Joseph_head_shot_190 Josh Joseph, son of Jim Joseph, is a man who wears many hats: He is a real estate investor, always looking for a good value-add deal--though is just as conservative as his father taught him to be. Previously he worked for a big bank in institutional real estate lending, managed commercial leasing for a large private REIT, and co-founded a real estate tech startup. Josh is an active participant and volunteer in the Jewish community. In addition to a love of many local Jewish institutions, Josh currently sits on the boards of the local...More

Laura Lauder

Laura_Lauder_127x190Laura Lauder is a native of Canton, Ohio and journeyed to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and Seville, Spain for her undergraduate education. In 1992, she joined her husband Gary in their venture capital partnership, Lauder Partners, specializing in Internet and media investments. Laura now primarily focuses her efforts on strategic grantmaking through the Laura and Gary Lauder Family Venture Philanthropy Fund and in numerous leadership capacities at local and national nonprofit organizations. Laura and Gary co-founded the Socrates Program of the Aspen Institute in 1996. Laura currently serves on...More

Rachel Levin

rachel_levin_hs_127x190Rachel worked in philanthropy for almost twenty years before she launched Fundamental, a boutique philanthropic consulting firm, in 2013. Rachel’s career began in government and politics, with the goal of impacting social change through the public sector. After working at the California State Treasurer's Office and on statewide political campaigns, Rachel was asked to help establish the Righteous Persons Foundation (RPF), a fund set up by film director Steven Spielberg. Rachel still serves as RPF’s Executive Director, while also managing a number of private foundations and grant portfolios on a...More

Al Levitt

Levitt_Alvin_headshotx190For most of his lifetime, Al Levitt has been actively immersed in Jewish causes, particularly those which aim to further Jewish education and heighten Jewish identity. At the national level, he has served as a Director of the Birthright Israel Foundation, the Partnership for Excellence in Jewish Education, and was the Chairman of the Board of Directors of Birthright Next. In the San Francisco Bay Area, he has served as a director and officer of numerous Jewish organizations and foundations. A native of Denver, Colorado, Al Levitt holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of...More

Jeffrey Solomon

Jeffrey_Solomon_headshot_190 Dr. Jeffrey R. Solomon is the President of the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies, a group of foundations operating in Canada, Israel and the United States. Among the foundations’ innovative launches are Birthright Israel and Reboot, two initiatives aimed at connecting young, assimilated Jews to their tradition, The Gift of New York, a powerful response to September 11, helping to heal families of victims through the power of culture, and Project Involvement, an educational reform program serving some 265,000 Israeli elementary school students. He previously served as the Senior Vice President...More


Barry Finestone, President and CEO

Dawne Bear-Novicoff, Chief Operating Officer

Josh Miller, Chief Program Officer

Mary Seabury, Chief Financial Officer

Stacie Cherner, Senior Program Officer

Aaron Saxe, Program Officer

Seth Linden, Program Officer

Jeff Tiell, Program Officer

Steven Green, Director of Grants Management/Program Officer

Sossena Walter, Director of Finance and Accounting

Diane Cronan, HRD & Community Relations Consultant

Pam Ganz, Executive Assistant

Cynthia Megino, Grants Administrator

Nicole Levy, Program Assistant

Rachel Halevi, Program Assistant

Mallory Morales, Program Assistant

Blake Soiu, Information Technology Consultant


The Jim Joseph Foundation invests in promising Jewish education grant initiatives. We partner with effective organizations that seek to inspire young people to discover the joy of living vibrant Jewish lives.