Board of Directors

The Foundation has a dedicated Board of Directors, whose members bring significant communal experience to the Foundation’s governance.

Former Members of the Board of Directors:

  • Alisa Robbins Doctoroff

    Chair of the Board

    As Chair of the Board of the Jim Joseph Foundation, Alisa guides the Foundation in fulfilling the philanthropic mission of its founder, Jim Joseph, z"l, who believed in providing compelling and effective learning experiences for young Jews in the U.S.

    Alisa has been active on the boards of a wide spectrum of organizations and foundations - small and large, new and old - that promote deep engagement with Jewish life, and that build and provide care for community. She is past President and Chair of the board of UJA-Federation of New York where she has long been involved with its grantmaking in the Jewish education space as well as in Israel. A past president of the Abraham Joshua Heschel School in New York City, she was instrumental in founding its high school division and building a new school campus. Additionally, she has served on the boards of the Jewish Theological Seminary, The Hadar Institute, Moving Traditions, and the Jewish Agency for Israel.

    More recently, she joined the board of Montefiore Health Systems, a major academic medical center based in the Bronx with deep commitments to excellence, humanism and community.

    Alisa graduated from Harvard College and received an M.B.A at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business. She also holds an M.A. in Jewish Studies from the Jewish Theological Seminary. She lives in Manhattan with her husband, Dan, and they are the proud parents of three adult children.

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  • Barry Finestone

    President and CEO

    Barry Finestone is President and CEO of the Jim Joseph Foundation. The Foundation supports Jewish education for youth, teens, and young adults in the U.S., with more than $490 million granted in its first 11 years of operation.

    Prior to the Jim Joseph Foundation, 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 of college was at a residential summer camp director in Waupaca, Wisconsin for Young Judaea. Barry says he never would have hired himself for that job, but the experience was invaluable in helping him learn how to run and operate an entity. His philosophy in work is to have a vision, start going there, and then hire the best people you can and get out of the road!

    A Scottish native with 25 years of experience in the Jewish nonprofit world, Barry holds a degree in Community Education from Jordanhill College in Glasgow, Scotland. He and his wife, Ellen, have three children—Gabrielle, Ethan and Mia.

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  • David Agger

    David Agger has over thirty years of experience in investment and finance. Since 1998 he has managed an investment partnership, Metropolis Partners, Inc. offering direct investment and financial structuring in the real assets industry. Direct investment and advisory activities focus on the acquisition of value added opportunities in solar energy, industrial and R&D office real estate in Southern California and the New England area. Mr. Agger is the Member of DGEP Management, LLC an early stage developer of distributed solar projects throughout the United States.

    He has a longstanding record of community service in the Bay Area where he currently serves as a Director of the Jim Joseph Foundation and is a Member of its Executive Committee, and is Chair of the Investment and Finance Committee. He is also Director, Member of the Executive Committee and Chairman of the Investment Committee of the Bernard Osher Foundation ( ), Chairman of the Investment Committee for the Foundation for California Community Colleges (, is a Board Member of the Sandler Foundation ( and is a past Member of the Board and a current member of the Investment and Endowment Executive Committees of the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco (

    Previously Mr. Agger was a Trustee, Member of the Executive Committee and was Chair of the both the Investment and Development Committees of the University of San Francisco ( was past President of the Mt. Zion Health Fund ( and past Board Member of the Institute On Aging (

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  • Dr. Dvora Joseph Davey

    Dr. Dvora Joseph Davey, Jim Joseph’s eldest child, has served on the Jim Joseph Foundation Board of Directors since 2006. Dvora also served on the Board of Repair the World and is passionate about engaging young Jews in volunteering, learning and giving back to their communities.

    Dvora is currently an Assistant Professor in Epidemiology in the Fielding School of Public Health at the University of California, Los Angeles. She has an Honorary Assistant Professorship in Epidemiology with the University of Cape Town’s School of Public Health and Family Medicine where she conducts research on how best to prevent and treat HIV in pregnant women and women seeking to have children.

    She became passionate about the health of African women and children while serving in the Peace Corps in Gabon, Africa. Since her time in Gabon, she has worked for over fifteen years developing and evaluating public health programs in Africa (Rwanda, Mozambique and now South Africa). Before becoming an Assistant Professor, she managed large NGO programs, including grant writing and research. Most recently she was the Country Director for Absolute Return for Kids (ARK) and the HIV Director for Population Services International (PSI) in Mozambique.

    Raised in California, Dvora earned her bachelor’s degree with Honors in International Affairs and French at the University of Colorado, Boulder. After her time in Gabon she earned her master’s degree in International Public Health from Columbia University, and her Ph.D in Epidemiology from the Fielding School of Public Health at UCLA.
    Dvora currently resides in Cape Town, South Africa with her husband, Andrew, and their two children, Ayden and Sophia.

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  • Joshua Foer

    Journalist and entrepreneur Joshua Foer is the author of the international bestseller Moonwalking with Einstein, which has been published in 37 languages, and which was a finalist for the Royal Society Winton Prize for Science Books. His writing has appeared in the New Yorker, National Geographic, the New York Times Magazine, Esquire, and other publications. He is the co-founder and chairman of Atlas Obscura, and the co-author of the #1 Amazon bestseller Atlas Obscura: An Explorer's Guide to the World's Hidden Wonders. He is the co-creator of the international design competition Sukkah City, and the co-founder and chairman of the Jewish digital library Sefaria. He has been named "One of Ten People Who Could Change the World" by the New Statesman and one of the "Forward 50." He was a 2013 Guggenheim Fellow. He lives in Brookline, MA with his wife and two children.

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  • Joshua Joseph

    Joshua is a student and a teacher, a seeker and a guide, an author, a philosopher, and an embracer of all that can be questioned. Through his mentorship, writing, and The Inflection Point platform, he works with his readers, audience, and clients to navigate life-altering moments with more freedom, awareness, effectiveness, and joy.

    Relentless in his personal growth, Joshua is constantly seeking new wisdom and perspective through people and books. His debut novel, Dak Ackerthefifth and the Ethics of Heroism, is the manifestation of all he has consumed: a story for those interested in unconventional explorations of modern living, or in the probing of today’s invisible guiding narratives.

    A graduate of Tufts University and the UC Berkeley Haas School of Business, Joshua lives the Pirkei Avot teaching “Who is wise? He who learns from every person,” taking disparate teaching, philosophies, and tradition, and reconciling them into something meaningful and relevant.

    Joshua is the proud father of two daughters, whose Hebrew names are Miriam, named for her great grandmother who brought the family to the United States to escape the Holocaust, and Simone, named for her grandfather who established the Jim Joseph Foundation.

    Learn more about Joshua, his work, and his writings at The Inflection Point.

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  • Laura Lauder

    Laura 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 is a nonprofit entrepreneur. She is the founder of DeLeT: Day School Teaching through Leadership, a national Jewish Teach for America program that is a selective fellowship to recruit, train and retain Jewish Day School teachers in the US. DeLet is modeled on Laura’s experience as a fellow in the Wexner Heritage Foundation. She is co-founder of the Jewish Teen Funders Network’s Foundation Board Incubator, which brings the success and impact of Jewish teen philanthropy programs across North America into cities around the world. Laura and Gary co-founded the Socrates Program of the Aspen Institute in 1996, which has convened over 6,000 young leaders worldwide to Aspen to participate in seminars and salons on the most difficult issues of the day. Laura is the founder of a new Gap Year program at Duke University that seeks to encourage young people to take a gap year between high school and college to grow, explore and serve.

    Laura also serves on numerous nonprofit boards. She is chair of the $2.1 billion Jewish Community Endowment Fund of San Francisco and on the board and executive committee of the San Francisco Jewish Federation. She serves on the board of Social Finance of Boston, a non-profit that brings impact investing through Pay-For-Success Bonds through public private partnerships. She also serves on the advisory board of Directors of Service Year Alliance, which creates opportunities for young adults to serve their country through a year of full-time community service, on the board of trustees of the Aspen Institute, and on the National Constitution Center Board of Directors. She has previously served on the boards of the National Public Radio Foundation and Spark Networks — a NYSE Amex Company and parent of JDate.

    Laura is active with the Young Presidents’ Organization (YPO/WPO), a global leadership network and is a fellow of the Council on Foreign Relations. She was named one of “10 Women to Watch” by Jewish Woman magazine in 2004. She has won numerous awards, including Volunteer of the Year from the San Francisco Jewish Community Federation in 2011, the Jim Brooks Achievement Award in 2004, and the San Francisco Bay Area Dinkelspiel Young Leadership Award in 1999.

    Laura is an avid cyclist and won a bronze medal in the Maccabi Games in Israel in cycling time trial in 2009. While she is a political junkie, she hopes to never run for political office, but is willing to climb any mountain on a bike. She lives in Silicon Valley with her husband, Gary; they are empty nesters as both of their children are in college.

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  • Rachel Levin

    Rachel worked in philanthropy for 20 years before launching Fundamental, a boutique philanthropic and political consulting firm, in the summer of 2013. She began her career in politics and government, with the goal of creating social change through the public sector. Rachel then joined Margery Tabankin & Associates, where she helped establish the Righteous Persons Foundation (RPF), a fund Steven Spielberg began in 1995 with his profits from the film Schindler's List. Today, Rachel serves as RPF’s Executive Director while also managing a number of other private foundations and grant portfolios on a range of issues including: shared democracy, civic engagement, arts education, and economic development. In addition to serving on the board of the Jim Joseph Foundation , Rachel is a board member of the Alliance for Justice and an advisory board member of the International Refugee Assistance Project.

    Rachel is the co-founder of Reboot, a national effort to engage young creatives and activists in an open examination of their cultural identity. Rachel frequently lectures on philanthropy and generational change. She graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania and was a public policy fellow at the Coro Foundation.

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  • Dan Safier

    Dan is past Chair of the Jim Joseph Foundation and also past Chair of the San Francisco Jewish Community Endowment Fund, where he also served on the Board, Executive Committee, Finance & Administration, Investment, and Building Committees, and he formerly served as the Chair of the Capital Planning Committee. He previously served on the Board of Directors of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco, the Board of Directors for the American Friends of the Weizmann Institute of Science, and various committees for Brandeis Hillel Day School. Dan is a Wexner Heritage Foundation Alumnus.

    Professionally, Dan is the co-founder, President and CEO of the Prado Group, a privately held real estate development and investment management company that invests in residential, retail and mixed-use properties. Dan received his BA from UC Berkeley and his JD from the UC Hastings College of Law. He is on the Board of Directors of SPUR, the Schultz Family Foundation, is a Founding Member of UC Berkeley’s Terner Center for Housing Innovation, a member of ULI’s Urban Development Mixed-Use Council, and a member of Lambda Alpha International.

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  • Jeffrey Solomon

    Dr. Jeffrey R. Solomon served as 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 and Chief Operating Officer of UJA-Federation of New York. Other past positions include executive positions at Altro Health & Rehabilitation Services, Miami Jewish Home and Hospital for the Aged and Jewish Family and Children's Services in Miami. Dr. Solomon also served with the City, State and Federal Governments. An author of over 100 publications in both professional journals and outlets such as The Financial Times and Wall Street Journal, he served as an adjunct associate professor at New York University. He sits on numerous nonprofit and foundation boards in addition to the Jim Joseph Foundation, including the KIND Foundation in New York, and the Leichtag Foundation in San Diego, where he serves as Vice Chair. He also served on the Board of the Council on Foundations, where he chaired the Committee on Ethics and Practice and sat on its Executive Committee. He is a founding trustee of the World Faiths Development Dialogue and has received a number of honors from professional associations and universities.

    His widely acclaimed book, The Art of Giving: Where the Soul Meets a Business Plan, co-authored with Charles Bronfman, was published by Wiley/Jossey-Bass in October, 2009. It has been awarded the Axiom Gold Medal in philanthropy and has been translated and published in South Korea. They completed a sequel, The Art of Doing Good: Where Passion Meets Action, also published by Wiley/Jossey-Bass (September, 2012), which explores the principles and practices of nonprofit social enterprise, extracting the lessons from the journeys of eighteen social entrepreneurs.

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