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Founder and Dean
Rabbi Brickman is a Yeshiva University Alumnus and has extensive experience working in Jewish outreach. He has worked in various positions in NCSY (National Conference of Synagogue Youth) including running a camp in Russia. He was an educator at the Bi-Cultural Day School in Stamford, Connecticut, as well as at the Jewish Heritage Center in Queens, New York. Rabbi Brickman has been the Dean of the Derech Institute at Ohr Somayach in Jerusalem for over 12 years and has served as Dean for the Chai Israel program since its inception.
Rabbi Mordechai Levine, Administrator, was raised in Essex, MA. He earned a BS in environmental economics from U. Mass, Amherst. He spent several years studying at Aish Hatorah and the Mir Yeshiva, and he has become a student of Rav Yitzchak Berkowitz, and earned his smichah from Rav Zalman Nechemiah Goldberg. Besides jamming for us on his guitar, Rabbi Levine is the one who makes all the necessary technical aspects of YCI happen, from arranging our trips to bringing in guest speakers and keeping things running smoothly. Rabbi Levine resides in the Givat Zev neighborhood near Jerusalem with his wife and four daughters.
Co-Founder and Director
Rabbi Zwick was born and raised in Queens, New York. As a teenager, he was an avid NCSYer who went to study in Israel after high school. After spending nearly 10 years in Yeshivot, Rabbi Zwick received his Semicha (Rabbinical ordination) while attending the famed Mir Yeshiva in Jerusalem. He was a Rebbe in various schools such as Neveh Zion, Ohr Chadash, Ner Yaakov and has launched learning programs for the L’man Achai Organization. While studying towards his B.A. in psychology at Touro college, Rabbi Zwick was employed by Ohel Beis Ezra for two years as a program coordinator, working with disabled adults. Returning back to the world of NCSY, Rabbi Zwick served as Director of Informal Education for NCSY Canada in Toronto. During his 4 years working with NCSY Canada, much of his time was devoted to Jewish outreach for Torah High and JSU. In Toronto, he was also the in-house Rabbi for JUMP – The Jewish Urban Meeting Place, a center for Birthright Alumni students. Rabbi Zwick and his wife Malka along with their four children made Aliyah in 2008 in order to launch the long awaited Chai Israel Program. They currently reside in the Ramat Eshkol neighborhood of Jerusalem.
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