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Ukraine Update from Ella Goncharova

Ella Goncharova

A lifelong resident of Dnipro, Ella is a graduate of Dnepropetrovsk State University, She is a mother of two children (son and daughter) and a proud grandmother of four. For more than 35 years Ella contributed to the cultural and Jewish life in Dnepropetrovsk, Ukraine. While serving as the  Artistic Deputy Director for the Shinnik Cultural and Sports Complex of Dneproshina OJSC (Dnipro),  she took an active part in the life of the local Jewish community in the All-Ukrainian Women's Jewish Organization Project Kesher. From 1996 - 2016, Ella was the Director of the Sunday Jewish School at the Israeli Cultural Center (Embassy of the State of Israel in Ukraine).   She was in charge of the Business Club of the Israel Cultural Center and was the Executive Director of the Young Leaders and the Talmud Torah project. With Project Kesher, Ella served as Project Coordinator of Economic and Legal Literacy and Lador va Dor-The Power of Generations and currently leads their Mom to Mom program.


Guest Speaker  Joshua Rubenstein 


Joshua Rubenstein is a longtime Associate of Harvard’s Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies and is also Associate Director for Major Gifts at Harvard Law School. He was the Northeast Regional Director of Amnesty International USA for 37 years. His first book, Soviet Dissidents: Their Struggle for Human Rights, was the first general history of the Soviet dissident movement. Tangled Loyalties, his biography of the controversial Soviet-Jewish writer Ilya Ehrenburg, came out in 1996. Stalin’s Secret Pogrom: The Postwar Inquisition of the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee, received a National Jewish Book Award. He then edited The KGB File of Andrei Sakharov and The Unknown Black Book: The Holocaust in the German-Occupied Soviet Territories. His interpretive biography of Leon Trotsky is part of the prestigious Jewish Lives Series of Yale University Press. The Last Days of Stalin is his tenth book; it is scheduled to appear in Azeri, Czech, Estonian, French, Greek, Hebrew, Hungarian, Polish, Portuguese, and Ukrainian.

Special Welcome from Sarah Abramson, Senior VP at CJP

Sarah Abramson, Ph.D., is the Senior Vice President for Strategy and Impact at Combined Jewish Philanthropies. Sarah

began her career in London as a Senior Policy Researcher for the Jewish Policy Institute and at the Board of Deputies of British Jews, where she liaised directly with members of parliament to represent the voices of British Jews to the UK Government. After moving home to Boston, Sarah became the first professional Executive Director of Yad Chessed, a Jewish cash assistance agency. In two years, Sarah grew Yad Chessed from a $200,000 organization to one distributing over $1.4 million dollars of direct financial assistance to hundreds of people in Greater Boston. In 2015, Sarah joined CJP as the Associate Vice President of Caring and Social Justice and was promoted to a Vice President in 2017.

Sarah graduated from Wesleyan University with the highest honors and a degree in religious studies. She holds a dual master's in Gender and Public Policy from the London School of Economics and completed her PhD in Sociology in 2010 with a dissertation on the concept of authenticity in Jewish youth movements and informal educational spaces. Sarah’s award-winning research from both her Ph.D. and additional studies on domestic violence and economic disadvantage have been published widely. She has consulted with many Jewish organizations, most notably serving as the chief consultant for the construction of London’s first large independent living facility solely for Holocaust survivors, which opened in 2008 and has since won numerous awards for its innovative use of space that incorporates the particular needs of the survivor community.  Sarah lives in Sudbury with her two children, Amelia and Henry, and her husband Steven.

Board of Directors


Barbara Karchmer, President

Carol Clingan, Vice President  

Robert Gordon, Treasurer

Barbara Anatolev, Clerk

Robert Gordon, Founder Emeritus

Zale Anis

Mila Bronstein 

Susan Brown

Sergey Broude

Evgenia Doktor

Tatyana Goldwyn

Melinda Harrison

Shirley Hurwitz

Roz Kaplan

Boris Katz

Nathan Vogel

Ery Magasanik

Judy Patkin, Executive Director Emerita

Wed, September 27 2023 12 Tishrei 5784