Tikvat Israel Congregation

A Conservative Synagogue in Rockville, MD


Sam Freedenberg

Sam Freedenberg, Executive Director

Sam has been Tikvat Israel’s executive director since May 2010. A native of Harrisburg, Pa., he brings to TI 28 years’ experience in nonprofit management, along with 7 years in competitive for-profit small businesses and 15 concurrent years in nonprofit volunteer leadership. Prior to TI he was director of communications for the National Association of Small Business Investment Companies and before that he was membership and chapter relations director at the Machinery Dealers National Association. He began his nonprofit career at the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), working on Association Management magazine and as manager of the ASAE Foundation. Sam received a BA in English from Dickinson College, Carlisle, Pa., and an MS in journalism from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and he studied for one year at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Sam and his wife Penina have two children (both TI b’nei mitzvah) and two grandchildren. Sam served as president of Tikvat Israel, as a vice president and as chair of the Religious Practices Committee. He has led weekday, Shabbat and High Holiday services and has been reading Torah and haftarah at services for 16 years.

Contact Sam by e-mail or phone 301-762-7338 ext. 111.



Michelle Sobel, ECC Director

Michelle Sobel, ECC Director

Michelle has been on the Tikvat Israel Early Childhood Center (ECC) staff since 2008, in a variety of roles including lead teacher for the 3-year-old class, curriculum specialist, and assistant director. Prior to working at the ECC, Michelle earned a bachelor’s degree with honors from the University of Florida and a master’s degree in both early childhood education and special education from the University of Miami. She began her career as a kindergarten teacher at a Jewish day school and went on to become a special educator and department leader at Miami’s Center for Pediatric Therapy. She also worked as an independent educational specialist before taking a job as a lead teacher in a Jewish pre-school. With such stellar credentials, Michelle has been a wonderful addition to our staff. Michelle has four children, Dani, Jack, Max and Sam. They live in Rockville.

Contact Michelle by e-mail or phone 301-251-0455.



Luisa Moss, Director, Youth & Education Programming


Luisa has been a Jewish educator for more than a decade and has worked at synagogues in the Washington DC area and California. In her role at TI, she leads the religious school for the synagogue’s school-age youth and coordinates youth group programs. A native of Cleveland, Ohio, Moss earned a joint masters in Jewish education and non-profit Jewish management at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles, Ca and a B.A. in Judaic studies at Ohio State University. In her free time, she loves cooking, reading, being a part of Jewish life in D.C., volunteering at cultural events at Sixth and I Historic Synagogue and touring sites in the city.

Contact Luisa by e-mail or phone 301-762-7338 ext. 120