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"I feel sorry for the person who was killed, but I feel sorrier for the people left behind." 


Speaking to a classmate at the funeral of an Israeli father of six, murdered by terrorists three months before Koby was murdered.

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The Koby Mandell Foundation helps bereaved mothers, fathers, widows, orphans and siblings to rebuild their lives and create meaning out of suffering.

Rabbi Seth and Sherri Mandell established the Koby Mandell Foundation in 2001 after their 13 year old son Koby Mandell and his friend Yosef Ishran were brutally murdered by terrorists near their home in Israel.


Their personal loss led the Mandells to envision a system of support programs that they hoped would make a real difference in the lives of people who had lost parents, children or siblings through terrorism.


The Mandells took their vision to professional therapists and grief counselors for refinement. The Koby Mandell Foundation soon developed a three-tiered model of support including informal therapeutic programming, recreation/ relaxation programming, and community building /social integration programming. 

Today, The Koby Mandell Foundation is the largest provider of emotional support services for the thousands of bereaved Israelis who have lost an immediate family member to terror via multi-faceted therapeutic programs.  


These unique programs are focused on teaching the tools necessary for victims of trauma to translate their pain and suffering into positive personal growth, deeper interpersonal relationships, and active community leadership. Most programs are provided free of charge, combining formal, informal, and recreational therapeutic techniques that foster an environment of healing and emotional support.

meet our staff


Rabbi Seth Mandell

Co-Founder, Co-President

Rabbi Mandell has been involved in Jewish education programs since 1982. He served as Director of the Hillel Foundation at the University of Maryland. During that time, the Hillel program became one of the largest and most active Jewish college educational programs in North America.  A seasoned orator, Rabbi Mandell speaks globally about The Koby Mandell Foundation and current topics in Israel.

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Roy Angstreich, MSW

Former Executive Director

Roy has served as Executive Director of the Foundation since its founding in the Spring of 2002. Since his Aliyah from New York City in 1991, he previously served as Administrative Director of Beit Midrash L'Torah (Jerusalem) and Director of Camp Ariel. He received his BA from Yeshiva College and MSW from the Wurzweiler School of Social Work , Yeshiva University

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Rabbi Gil Elmaleh, PhD

Camp Rabbi & Psychologist

Rabbi Dr. Elmaleh is the Dean of Students at Yeshivat Torat Shraga and has worked in summer camps for more than 25 years.  He was Head Counselor at Camp Simcha, Educational Director at Camp Lavi/Camp Mesorah. He is the Founder and Director of Yair Leolam, which teaches Jewish youth about the importance of doing chessed and becoming leaders in their communities.

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Sherri Mandell

Co-Founder, Co-President

A certified pastoral counselor, Sherri runs healing groups for bereaved mothers and manages the women's healing retreats. She won a National Jewish Book Award in 2004 for her spiritual memoir, The Blessing of a Broken Heart (Toby Press, 2003). She is also the author of The Road to Resilience: From Chaos to Celebration (Toby Press, 2015).

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Ami Haziza

Director - Machane Koby V'Yosef

And Educational Programs

Ami has been with The Foundation since 2005 , becoming Director of Camp Koby in 2012. Ami serves as the Director of the High School Division of the Education Department of the Moetza of the Shomron, having served in the past as the Co-ordinator of the Division for Youth at risk, teacher and Dormitory Supervisor

Ami has a BA in Education and a MA in Educational Counseling.


Dena Wimpfheimer

PR & Production

Dena has worked in the fields of media relations, public relations and entertainment event production for more than 20 years.  Originally from New York, Dena received her degree in Media Studies from Queens College of the City University of New York prior to moving to Israel in 2001. 

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Eliana Braner

Executive Director

Eliana Mandell Braner started as a camper and went on to become a division head at The Koby Mandell Foundation camps. 

She has an BA in psychology  and communications from Ariel University and previously was the director of MASA programs for Sachlav touring companies.

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Tamar Baumol

Project Coordinator


Tamar holds a bachelor's degree in community social work and is an interior designer. She has worked at mentoring and facilitating social change within marginalized sectors of the population as well as with  youth and small business owners.  Tamar has been working for The Koby Mandell Foundation since 2021.

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Jeremy Wimpfheimer

PR & Production

Jeremy has served as communications consultant, working intensively on numerous high-profile public affairs and political campaigns. Jeremy received his BA in Political Science and History from Rutgers University with concentrations in Political Communications and International Relations prior to pursuing a Masters Degree in Israeli Politics and Society at Hebrew University in Jerusalem. 

our board

  • Rabbi Seth Mandell - President

       Tekoa, Israel​

  • Margery Libin - Chairperson

       New York, NY

  • Lee Lasher - Treasurer

       Englewood, NJ​

  • Robert Mischel  

       Dobbs Ferry, NY​

  • Cory Baker
    Riverdale, NY 

  • Lawrence Deutch

       Philadelphia, PA

  • Heshy Feldman

       Englewood, NJ 

  • Melissa Hatter

       Manhattan, NY​

  • Todd Sukol
    Silver Spring, MD

  • Melodie Scharf

        Lawrence, NY​

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