The Team

Karen Lewis

Director of Institutional Greening

Karen Lewis is the Director of Institutional Greening working to elevate Hazon – Pearlstone’s sustainability initiatives and create impactful programs that build partnerships with other Jewish organizations. Her passion for environmental stewardship has strengthened her connection to Judaism which then uplifts her sustainability work; a feedback loop driving faith-based action toward mitigating climate change and increasing engagement in Jewish life. For over twenty years, Karen has been engaged in nonprofit program management, partnership development and community engagement, primarily in environmental and faith-based sectors. Karen lives in Chicago, balances her passion for protecting nature with her love of books, theater, and cooking, and can frequently be found walking with friends, family or her dog, Hobbes.

Bruce Spierer

Public Education Manager Chicago Site Coordinator

As the Public Education Manager at Hazon, Bruce has been instrumental in producing holiday and Shmita-related programs, publishing the revised Shmita Sourcebook, and managing the Brit Hazon. Bruce has ten years of experience working in environmental education and sustainability, specializing in food waste management, composting, and community gardening. Previously, he worked with the New York City Compost Project to support the development of gardens and compost operations with institutions, like schools, community gardens, and religious organizations. He holds a Masters degree from New York University in Environmental Conservation Education focusing on Nonprofit Management. Bruce is an amateur naturalist, lover of composting, and an avid fermenter of food and drink.

Hannah Fine

Detroit, MI
Community Organizer for Climate Justice

Hannah engages the Detroit and Metro Detroit community in conversation, education, action, and advocacy as it relates to climate justice. She previously worked in environmental consulting and has lived and worked on organic farms across North and South America. A transplant to Detroit from the metropolitan area, Hannah has fallen in love with the city’s deep sense of community, especially as it relates to food and environmental justice. Hannah attended Wayne State University where she earned a B.S. in Biochemistry and Chemical Biology. When not getting her hands dirty she can be found exploring, cooking, or planning her next trip.

Sue Salinger

Denver, CO
Regional Director

Sue Salinger creates the direction of and manages Hazon’s program in Denver. She leads Ekar Farm and brings Hazon’s strength in Jewish Outdoor, Food, Farming, and Environmental Education to Ekar’s goal of addressing the root causes of hunger through sustainable ag-based initiatives. She partners to build capacity within existing Jewish institutions in JOFEE, and creates new programs and experiences that bring people together across difference around health and sustainability. Sue was most recently Managing Director for the startup of Hazon in Detroit. Sue was the Director of Lifelong Learning at Temple Emanu-El in Oak Park, Michigan, and Director of Education at Congregation Nevei Kodesh in Boulder, Colorado. She graduated with a Masters of Fine Arts in Writing and Poetics at Naropa University, an MA in Communications and Philosophy at the European Graduate School in Switzerland. While at Naropa, Sue was a teaching assistant to Rabbi Zalman Shachter-Shalomi, zt”l. She’s a Master Gardener.

Liana Rothman

Jewish Youth Climate Movement Co-Founder and Manager

Liana Rothman is the co-founder and manager of the Jewish Youth Climate Movement (JYCM), where she supports Jewish teens in taking climate action, and promoting climate justice within Jewish institutions nationally. Liana also supports the Hazon Seal of Sustainability program, and JOFEE (Jewish Outdoor, Food, Farming, and Environmental Education) field-building initiatives. Liana is a liaison between JYCM and Seal sites to leverage the impact both programs have in local communities. Liana was an Adamah Fellow, Teva Educator, and JOFEE Fellow from 2018-2020. Liana is pursuing a MPA in nonprofit management and public policy from New York University. Liana loves to go on hikes, spend long hours on porches with friends, and is committed to building a more just society.

Libba Cooper

National Programs Coordinator

Libba Cooper is the National Programs Coordinator providing support for the Hazon Seal of Sustainability program and logistical support for events. She has a background in event planning and management and has worked for a variety of nonprofits within the community action network, higher education, and museum industry. Libba graduated from Roanoke College with a BA in music for vocal performance and still resides in Roanoke, VA. She’s a maker, loves podcasts and yoga, and enjoys being outside as much as possible, either hiking, camping, biking, or hammocking.

Becky O'Brien

Director of Food & Climate

Becky O’Brien is Hazon’s Director of Food & Climate. In this role, Becky helps leaders and institutions in the Jewish community understand the connection between their food choices and climate change, and support them in taking action to reduce their negative impact. Prior to her current role, Becky was a regional director for Hazon in Colorado for 9 years. In that time she worked with synagogues (of all denominations), Hillels, JCCs, Moishe Houses, day schools, summer camps, and more to support them in their greening work. Becky co-created the first ever Jewish Food Festival (which has since been replicated around the country) and the Brit Hazon (a behavior change program for individuals), and has written numerous resources and guides to support environmental learning and activism. She has worked in the Jewish nonprofit sector for more than 20 years. She received a Bachelor’s Degree in Religious Studies from the University of South Florida and a Master’s Degree in Religious Studies from the University of Colorado. And, Becky really loves mountains and trees.

Eliana Rusk

Denver, CO
Program and Outreach Coordinator, EKAR Farm

Eliana is deeply passionate about the nexus of community, intergenerational learning, Judaism, and food justice. She is so glad to be a part of Ekar Farm as the Program and Outreach Coordinator, creating authentic relationships and change with all 13 (and counting!) Colorado Seal of Sustainability Sites. Having previously worked with children and families at food (and) justice organizations across Colorado and in Canada, she is always eager to continue to grow her understanding of Jewish values around sustainability, land, food sovereignty, and social justice.