Tikvat Israel Congregation Rockville MD

A Friendly, Participatory and Egalitarian Conservative Synagogue in Rockville, Maryland


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 19 years.

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

Sheri Brown, Director, ECC

Sheri Brown, an early childhood educator since 1985, is our director of the Tikvat Israel Early Childhood Center. Sheri began teaching at the Jewish Community Center in Norfolk, Va., and most recently served as director of the pre-school at Adas Israel Congregation in the District of Columbia. She previously directed the Rosie Uran Jewish Education Center at Congregation Sha’are Shalom in Leesburg, VA. Brown has worked with students of all ages in Jewish, private and public schools as a classroom teacher and administrator. She also was the first technology specialist in a public school system. She says she enjoys challenging situations and finding solutions to them that show kavod to all involved. She says she is passionate about program quality and thrives when she is working together with staff members and families to provide the best environment possible for children.  She has been married to Matt Brown for 39 years and has three grown children.

Contact Sheri by email or  phone 301-762-7338 ext. 119

Elana Moss, Education and Youth Programming

Elana Moss is a graduate of Florida Atlantic University with a bachelor of arts in Holocaust & Judaic Studies and holds a Certificate in Ethnic Studies. She will be finishing up her M.A. in Jewish Education through the distance learning program at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Elana brings over 15 years of experience working with youth and adults in a variety of ages, backgrounds and settings, a love and commitment to education and Judaism, a great sense of humor, and a lot of common sense.

Contact Elana by email or phone 301-762-7338 ext. 127

Liora Dahan, Social Events and Food Services Coordinator

Liora Dahan brings extensive food services experience to Tikvat Israel. She has worked as an area director in the D.C. Public Schools for Sodexomagic, a private-sector food service. She was responsible for planning, management and execution of food service operations at 12 sites. Previously, from 2014 to 2016, she worked as general manager for Sodexo’s food service operations at Sandy Spring Friends School. Earlier in her career, Dahan was the food service manager at Capital Camps and food service director at the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School. Liora and her husband have two adult children.

Contact Liora by email or phone 301-762-7338 ext 213