Lori Fogel departs for Maimonides after putting school finances in order, Robin Federman leaves for admissions post at AJR

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Colleen Bazak, Coeditor-in-Chief

Chief Financial Officer Lori Fogel, known for her sweet personality and diligent work ethic, will not be returning to Shalhevet next year.

Lori has worked at Shalhevet for 4 years and will be the Chief Financial Officer at Maimonides next year. Robin Federman, Shalhevet’s Assistant Development Director, will also be leaving Shalhevet and will be the Director of Admissions at The Academy for Jewish Religion, California.

Lori, who could usually be found working in her office by the Beit Midrash, said that she will miss the school but is happy with what she has done.

“I tried to make the process easier on the families and I think I made families know that we want to help,” Lori said at an interview in mid-June. “I like just knowing what I have done for the school financially. Knowing that I helped stabilize them.”

Registrar Lili Einalhori worked closely with Lori after her former assistant, Adina Benjamin, left in November.

“When I wasn’t involved in the business aspect, I didn’t appreciate how important Lori’s job was,” Lili said. “I didn’t appreciate how important it was that you had accurate records.”

As Shalhevet’s CFO, Lori monitored all the money going in and out of the school, dealt with banks and financial aid, and gave the board reports about how the school was doing financially. With those reports, the board was able to make decisions that impacted the school’s finances.

“She did an absolutely unbelievable, in the literal sense of the word, job with putting the finances in order,” Head of School Rabbi Segal said, explaining that the financial records Lori inherited from previous years were in extreme disarray.

“To have the books in order and to know that there is someone who is as trustworthy and competent as Lori is a huge help to everything we did this year,” Rabbi Segal said. “I can only imagine how hard she worked during that time when she had to get things in order.”

Lori will be replaced by two people, Ms. Robyn Lewis in the newly created position of Executive Director and Coordinator for Major Gifts, and Mr. Errol Briggs in the newly created position of Controller.  Rabbi Segal said this administrative arrangement was typical for Jewish day schools.

“In keeping with the standard practice of most Jewish Day Schools, we have re-structured our Business Office and eliminated the position of CFO, while replacing it with the position of Executive Director and Controller,” Rabbi Segal wrote to the Shalhevet community May 24.

Lori wished them well in their new posts.

“It’s all a good challenge,” Lori said. “It’s about how you approach it. There will always be obstacles.”

Robin Federman will also be leaving next year after spending a little over a year at Shalhevet.

“I liked seeing the incredible light, caring, and intelligence,” Robin said about Shalhevet. “It felt like everyone was kind and respectful.”

While most students didn’t interact with Robin on a daily basis, Robin worked hard in getting the community to learn about Shalhevet. She worked closely with Director of Admissions Natalie Weiss, who Robin called a “mentor, teacher and friend.”

“Robin Federman is a professional in every sense of the word,” Natalie said. “She supported the Admission office with many important, yet mundane, administrative tasks. But what I valued most are Robin’s communication skills, high standards, teamwork and sense of humor.”

Next year, Robin and Lori both say they will miss seeing the students on a daily basis.

Lori added that she will miss hearing the students sing Hallel in the Beith Midrash every Rosh Chodesh, something she got to do this year due to the proximity of her office to the Beit Midrash.