The Eretz HaTzvi Faculty

Rabbi Yehuda Susman, Rosh HaYeshiva

Rabbi Susman

Semicha Rabanut HaRashit L'Yisrael/RIETS, BA Computer Science, Philosophy, Yeshiva University.

Rav Susman spent the first twelve years of his post high school education studying at Yeshivat Har Etzion, serving in the IDF tank corps, earning a BA in Computer Science and Philosophy from YU and receiving his semicha from both YU and the Rabbanut. He later added an MA in Talmud from Bar Ilan. He was the Rosh Kollel Torah MiTzion in Chicago where he was active in the formation of Beit Midrash programs on the University of Chicago and Northwestern campuses - returning to Israel to devote himself to the establishment of Yeshivat Eretz HaTzvi.


Rabbi Dovid Ebner, Rosh Yeshiva & Mashgiach Ruchani

Rabbi Susman

Semicha RIETS, BA Sociology, MHL, Ph.D. Yeshiva University, ABD in Sociology, Fordam University.

Rav Ebner is known throughout Israel as one of the most inspiring senior educators. He taught for over twenty years as a Rosh Yeshiva and Mashgiach Ruchani in Yeshivat HaMivtar.

He served as an Assistant Professor of Sociology as well as the Assistant Director of the Institute for Jewish life of UJC before his aliya in 1982. He was one of the founders of ATID and served as one of its Senior Mentors.

He is the author of two collections of poetry: The Library of Everything , on Jewish themes and Perhaps This Poem.


Rabbi Benny Pflanzer, Director & Ra"m

Rabbi Benny Pflanzer

BSc, Engineering Michlala L'Minhal Yerushalayim, MA equiv. Education Machon Gavoha Merchavim, Yerushayim.

A native of Yerushalayim, R' Benni made a career change, leaving a management position in one of Yerushalayim's largest construction companies to enter the field of Jewish education. He is a sought after educator for Israelis and Americans and has tought at the Ida Crown Jewish Academy in Chicago, Yeshivat Reishit Yerushalayim, and Yeshivat Bnei Akiva in Yerushalayim. He has been a popular Rav Machane in Camp Moshava, Wildrose, Wisconsin.


Rabbi Todd (Tuvia) Berman, Associate Director & Ra"m

Rabbi Todd Berman

Semicha Yeshivat HaMivtar, Yeshivat Har Etzion, B.S. Computer Science Columbia University, Graduate Studies Jewish History, Harvard University

Rav Berman has held numerous posts in education from the high school level through adult education. He founded the Jewish Learning Initiative (JLI) at Brandeis University and served as rabbinic advisor to the Orthodox community there for several years. Previously, he was a RaM at Midreshet Lindenbaum where he also served as the Rav of the dormitory.


Rabbi Yitz Motzen, Associate Director & Director of Admissions

Rabbi Yitz Motzen

Semicha RIETS, B.A. & M.Ed. Yeshiva University, Kerem B'yavneh.

Rav Yitz has been involved with informal education for almost two decades. He has worked for Upstate NY NCSY, Zionist Seminars in South Africa, Head Dorm Counselor at YU, Netivot Kollel in Australia, and interned in SAR Academy. He runs the informal programming in the yeshiva - including tiyulim, Chessed, Yemei Iyun and Shabbatonim. Rav Yitz lives on the yeshiva’s campus with his wife and family.


Rabbi Simcha Krauss, Senior Lecturer

Rabbi Simcha Krauss

Semicha Yoreh Yoreh and Yadin Yadin from Yeshivas R" Chaim Berlin, BA City College, MA The New School of Social Research.

Rav Krauss was a Maggid Shiur in Yeshiva University's IBC program for over two decades. He has also served on the Political Science faculty at both St. Louis University and Utica College of Syracuse University. A highly regarded pulpit rabbi, Rav Krauss served for many years at the Young Israel of Hillcrest, the Young Israel of St. Louis, and Congregation House of Jacob of Utica, N.Y.

Rabbi Krauss served as the president of the Religious Zionists of America before his aliyah in 2005.


Mrs. Shulamith Teitz Ebner, Administrator

Mrs. Shulamith Teitz Ebner

BA, Barnard College, JD NYU Law School.

A graduate of Barnard College with a degree in literature and creative writing, Mrs. Ebner proceeded to NYU Law School and worked as house counsel for Time-Warner Inc. She changed course and became executive director of the Elizabeth, NJ Jewish community for 12 years until her aliyah in 1996. Today her energy is devoted to Eretz HaTzvi, Torah studies, reading and entertaining students, family and friends.


Rabbi Mordechai Friedman, Ra"m Talmud & Halacha

Rabbi Mordy Friedman

Semicha RIETS, BA, MA Medieval Jewish History, Yeshiva University..

Rav Mordy received his BA, MA and semicha from Yeshiva University as well as teacher certification from Machon Herzog. His 4-year experience as the JLIC rabbi at the University of Pennsylvania inspired him to become an expert in preparing students for the college experience. Rav Mordy also specializes in issues of social justice. He enjoys travel and scuba diving.


Rabbi Itiel Oron, Ra"m Talmud & Halacha

Rabbi Itiel Oron

Semicha Rabanut HaRashit L'Yisrael B.Ed. & Teacher's Certification Herzog College, Har Etzion

Rav Oron is a known educator in various highly-regarded adult and post-high school learning programs. He is a member of Beit Hillel - the organization of attentive spiritual leadership in Israel, as well as the rabbinical organization Tzohar. Rav Oron studied in Yeshivat Har Etzion for 10 years during which time he received semicha and earned a BA from Herzog College.


Rabbi Aviad Tabory, Ra"m Talmud & Halacha

Rabbi Aviad Tabory

Semicha Rabanut, BA Herzog College, Yeshivat Or Etzion, Yeshivat Har Etzion

Rav Tabory studied in Yeshivat Or Etzion and Har Etzion. He served as Rav Shaliach for Bnei Akiva in the UK and was the founding rabbi of Kehillat Alei Tzion in London. He was one of the founders and Director of Moshava’s Mach Hach Hesder program. He has been Rosh Beit Midrash at Camp Stone, Rav on Machal, TVI, and Moshava IO.

Rav Aviad serves a reservist in IDF Tank Corps.


Rabbi Dr. Josh Amaru, Ra"m Tanach & Machshava

Rabbi Benny Pflanzer

Semicha Rabbanut, Yeshivat Har Etzion, B.A., M.A., PhD Bar-Ilan

Rabbi Dr. Amaru is one of the scholars overseeing the translation of the Talmud Bavli for the new Koren/Steinsaltz edition. He recently received a fellowship to write a book about the relationship between halakha and virtue ethics. He spent 10 years studying at Yeshivat Har Etzion and has a BA, MA, and PhD in philosophy from Bar Ilan University.


Rabbi Zvi Grumet, Director Tanach Program

Rabbi Zvi Grumet

Semicha RIETS, B.A. Brooklyn College, M.A., EdD Yeshiva University

Rabbi Dr. Grumet is totally devoted to Tanakh study as evidenced by his recently published book Moses and the Path to Leadership (2014) and the forthcoming From Creation to Covenant (2016). He is also affiliated with Pardes Institute, Hebrew College (Boston) and The Lookstein Center. Rabbi Grumet plays guitar, composes music and organizes private tiyulim.


Rabbi Alex Israel, R"am, Tanach and Machshava Programs

Rabbi Alex Israel

Semicha Yeshivat Har Etzion, BA Computer Studies and Education, London University.

Rav Alex teaches at Eretz HaTzvi and Pardes where he is Director of Community Education and the Summer Program. In 2013 he published I Kings: Torn in Two. He made aliyah in 1991. He volunteers for Tzohar, bridging gaps between the secular and religious communities in Israel. He enjoys running, music and everything to do with contemporary Israel.


Hakham Joseph Harari, Ra"m Halacha & Department Head - Sephardic Studies

Rabbi Joseph Harari

Yeshivat Har Etzion

Hakham Harari is the Department Head for Sephardic Studies. His shiurim are attended and loved by both Sephardim and Ashkenazim alike. A graduate of Yeshivat Har Etzion, he has spent much of his life active in various Synagogues and educational projects in the Syrian Jewish communities of Brooklyn and Yerushalayim, including co-founding iLead. He made aliya in 1999, and has been teaching at Eretz Hatzvi since 2005.


Rabbi Zev Gold, Ra"m Halacha, Night Seder

Rabbi Zev Gold

Semicha Rabanut HaRashit L’Yisrael/RIETS, BA Lifshitz, MA (pending) Hebrew U., Yeshivat Birkat Moshe.

Rav Zev began his career in Eretz HaTzvi as a madrich and has taught in various forms since. He is extremely popular, both for his personal warmth, as well as his impressive breadth of knowledge and clarity in shiur. Rav Zev studied in Yeshivat Birkat Moshe, has a BA from Lifshitz, an MA (pending) from Hebrew U and semicha from the Rabban


Rabbi Prof. Chemia Kleinman, Sho'el U'Meshiv

Rabbi Prof. Chemia Kleinman

Semicha RIETS, Yeshiva Torah Vodaas, PhD Theoretical Physics, NYU.

Rabbi Prof. Kleinman is the retired chairman of the Physics departments at Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus and gave shiurim at the Queens Jewish Center for over 40 years.

Prof. Kleinman was born in Poland, survived the Holocaust, and came to the United States in 1947. After learning at Yeshiva Torah Vodaas, he received semicha from RIETS and then received his doctorate in Theoretical Physics from New York University.


Rabbi Moshe & Moria Gold Av & Em Bayit (Dorm Parents)

Moshe & Moria Gold

Moshe and Moria are the dorm parents of the yeshiva. Moshe has a B.ed and M.ed in Tanach from Herzog College, semicha from the Rabbanut, and plays basketball pretty well (for an Israeli). Moria is a computer programmer and plays guitar in her spare time. Their home is always open to welcome students, offering them a warm place to chill, discuss life, and eat home baked goodies. They live in the dorm with their kids David (3.5 years old) and baby Navah.


Noam Shalit, Ra"m Night Seder

Rabbi Noam Shalit

Hesder, Har Etzion, BA Hebrew University, MA pending, .

Noam Shalit began as a member of the Kollel and is now the Night Seder Coordinator. He studied in Yeshivat Har Etzion, completed a BA in psychology and Jewish Thought and is pursuing his MA in Psychology. He has spent time in Australia for the Jewish Agency and has worked with The Summit Institute helping Israel’s most disadvantaged youth. He loves 60s band and jazz music and loves to cook.


Michael Rainsbury Associate Director

Michael Rainsbury

BA Hons History, University of Birmingham; MA Jewish History, University of London; Qualified Teacher Status, London School of Jewish Studies

Michael runs the informal programming in the yeshiva including
tiyulim, chessed, yemei iyun and shabbatonim. He has extensive experience in informal education in the UK and Israel, having served as Educational Director and Mazkir (National Head) of Bnei Akiva UK and a Programme Director at World Bnei Akiva. He also guides educational Jewish heritage trips to Poland with JRoots. A former teacher of Jewish Studies and History in King Solomon High School, he has also taught regularly in yeshivot and midrashot over the last few years. Since making Aliyah in 2013, Michael met his wife Dana and they live close to the yeshiva in the Arnona neighbourhood.



Rabbi David Gross, Halacha and Night Seder

Rabbi David Gross

B.A. University College London, Yeshivat HaKotel.

Rav Gross, originally from London, studied in Yeshivat HaKotel. After graduating from UCL with a degree in Hebrew and Jewish History, he returned to Yeshivat HaKotel where he finished his semicha. He interned in Washington on the House International Relations Committee and worked as foreign affairs advisor to a Member of Knesset in Israel. He recently completed an MBA from Bar Ilan University.


Prof. Aaron Katchen, Senior Lecturer, Jewish History

Prof. Aaron Katchen

B.A., PhD Harvard.

Prof. Katchen’s impressive university background attracts our students to his popular course of “Major Moments in Post-Biblical Jewish History”. His wide-ranging intellectual and academic interests and knowledge enable him to enjoy the culture of Israel more than the average oleh. He takes great pleasure in his children and grandchildren and the thrill of participating in the annual 5-day Alyn Hospital Wheels of Love charity bike ride covering 400 km in the scenic Israeli countryside.


Rabbi Robert Lederman, Senior Lecturer, Chassidut

Rabbi Robert Lederman

Semicha, Rabbanut LBSc (Hons) Optometry

Rabbi Dr. Lederman works in Jerusalem as a Developmental Optometrist, improving the visual efficiency of his patients. He has been involved in Jewish education for over 30 years, and has taught Sfat Emet, a Chassidic text, at Yeshivat Eretz HaTzvi since 2006. Rabbi Lederman received Semicha from Yeshivat Ohr Torah Stone, and from Rabbi Zalman Nechemiah Goldberg.