This year’s local winner of the North American Grinspoon Awards for Excellence in Jewish Education is Keren Rhodes, the Youth and Family Education Director of the Jewish Community of Amherst (JCA). The other local finalists were Marlene Rachelle and Felicia Sloin.
Rhodes will receive a cash prize of $1,000 and a $500 professional development grant. The finalists each receive a $250 professional development grant.
The recipients were nominated by Jewish organizations and individuals from around the Pioneer Valley. In total, 11 people were nominated.
The Springfield JCC locally sponsors this process, along with the Jewish Federation of Western Mass. and the Harold Grinspoon Foundation (HGF), which oversees the process nationally.
Rhodes, of Amherst, has been working at JCA for the past five years. Her first job was as a teacher’s assistant at the JCA school more than 20 years ago. “I am honored to be recognized by the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and the Jewish community of Western MA for my work in Jewish Education. I am inspired every day by the children and families I work with,” she said.
She lives in Amherst with her husband and two children.
CAP: Keren Rhodes, left, receiving the award from Harold Grinspoon, center, and Rabbi Yafa Chase, right.