Kasia Andersz, Bente Kahan Foundation, Wrocław, Poland
Project coordinator at the Bente Kahan Foundation. Kasia studied English Literature and Jewish Studies in Poland, Germany, and Israel and worked at the Righteous Among the Nations Department at Yad Vashem. She is also engaged in various projects of the Jewish Community in Wrocław, i.a. Chidusz the Jewish Magazine.
Tania Berg, Bet Debora, Berlin, Germany
Has studied political science at the Freie Universität Berlin. She works in the field of civic education dealing with topics of democracy, diversity and history. She writes pedagogical concepts, develops projects and teaches adults in these fields. She has worked for workers unions, conAct, bpb, foundations and big volunteer organizations like Deutscher Feuerwehrverband, DRK and THW.
At the moment she works in a project that supports volunteers who support refugees. The project deals with questions of participation in society.
Tanja is engaged with organizing the youth exchange between the district of Berlin Pankow and the municipality of Tel Aviv – Jaffo since 2001. She is engaged with Bet Debora Berlin.
Lara Dämmig, Bet Debora, Berlin, Germany
studied library science and management of cultural and non-profit organizations, and works for a Jewish organization in Berlin. She has done extensive research on Jewish history in Berlin’s Pankow district for several book projects and exhibitions at the Pankow Museum. In the 1990ies she was instrumental in organising a Rosh Chodesh group and an egalitarian minyan in Berlin. In 1998, together with Elisa Klapheck and Rachel Monika Herweg, she launched Bet Debora, the Jewish women’s initiative, and organized the first three conferences for European female rabbis, cantors, Jewish activists, and scholars, held in Berlin between 1999 and 2003. She is co-chair of the Bet Debora association and one of the editors of the interreligious magazine INTA – Interreligiöses Forum.
Bente Kahan, Bente Kahan Foundation, Wrocław, Poland
Bente Kahan is a Norwegian-born Jewish actress, musician, director and playwright, who has been the director of the Center for Jewish Culture and Education at the White Stork Synagogue since 2005.
The Bente Kahan Foundation established by her was responsible for the renovation of the White Stork Synagogue that was completed in May of 2010. Under her leadership this historic building has become a prestigious venue for concerts, theatre performances and exhibits presented in a spirit of mutual respect and cultural diversity.
She received her formal training in the performing arts in Tel-Aviv and New York, and has been working as a concert and stage artist since 1981. She began her career in “Habima”, Israel’s national theatre, and “Nationaltheatret” in Norway. Her first Yiddish performance was in Oslo in 1983. After several years as a member of diverse Oslo ensembles, she started to perform in her own monodramas, co-authored with the Norwegian stage director Ellen Foyn Bruun. In 1990, she founded a production company, “Teater Dybbuk – Oslo” and her first productions were recorded in Warsaw with the Polish musicians Dariusz Świnoga and Mirosław Kuźniak. Teatr Dybbuk-Oslo productions were performed on many stages throughout the world.
In 2000 BK was granted a Lifelong Stipend by the Norwegian Art Council for her artistic achievements. In 2006 she won the Wroclaw Mayor’s Award, and in 2010, after the re-opening of the restored Synagogue, she was named Ambassador of Wrocław, and was a winner of the German-Polish Silesian Culture Award.
Eleonore Lappin-Eppel, Bet Debora, Vienna, Austria
was born in Vienna, where she attended primary school and secondary school. Afterwards she studied German, English and comparative literature in the USA and in Israel. She earned her PhD at Hebrew University in Jerusalem with a dissertation on Martin Buber. After returning to Austria, she worked for the most part in research. Today, she is a researcher at the Institute of Culture Studies and Theatre History, a part of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, and teaches and conducts research at the Centre of Jewish studies at the University of Graz. Her main areas of interest are Jewish social and intellectual history of the 19th and 20th centuries, as well as Holocaust studies.
Eleonore Lappin-Eppel is a founding member of the liberal Jewish congregation Or Chadasch in Vienna and a member of the board of the Platform for Interfaith Encounters and the Coordinating Committee for Christian-Jewish Cooperation.
Anna Makówka-Kwapisiewicz, Czulent, Krakow, Poland
Historian, journalist, social activist and anti-discrimination trainer. Alumni of the history department at the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Toruń. She worked with the Austeria Publishing House and Midrasz, Polish-German Center Association, Foundation for the Preservation of the Jewish Heritage in Poland, The KARTA Institute, Internationaler Bund Poland and Radio Kraków Małopolska. Author of the publishing project „Majses“, where one of the project’s books „Majn Alef Bejs“ has been awarded the main Bologna Ragazzi Award at the Bologna Children’s Book Fair. Anna is also a member of the Crisis Intervention Society. President of Jewish Association Czulent. She graduated from the Academy of Anti-discrimination Training and School Coaches ROZVIYAK . Currently he is doing a PhD at the University of Pedagogical in Krakow on Jewish women and Holocaust.
Dr. Barbara Pendzich, Bente Kahan Foundation, Wrocław, Poland
Barbara Maria Pendzich, born in Chicago, Illinois, to Polish emigre parents.Graduated from Georgetown University, Washington, D.C and received doctorate from same in 1998 on the Polish-Muscovite War of 1654 under the mentorship of Prof. Andrzej Sulima Kamiński.Worked with the NSZZ „Solidarność“ Coordinating Office Abroad headed by Jerzy Milewski in Brussels. Recipient of Lady Davis Scholarship at Hebrew University and studied with Prof. Moshe Rosman (Bar Ilan University).Co-edited with Prof. Karin Friedrich the Festschrift „Citizenship and Identity in a Multinational Commonwealth“ published by Brill Academic Publishers. Worked as Deputy Director of the Institute for Civic Space and Public Policy at Lazarski University in Warsaw. Currently working with the Bente Kahan Foundation in Wrocław. Married to a native of Wrocław and happy mother of three.