- Avi Rose, Executive Director
- Anna Benvenue, Director of Immigration Legal Services
- Rita Clancy, Director of Adult Services
- Michelle Knapik, Senior Director of Finance & Administration
- Carol Singer, Senior Director of Programs
- Amy Weiss, Director of Refugee & Immigrant Services
- Holly Taines White, Senior Director of Development & Community Engagement
Avi Rose has served as the executive director of Jewish Family & Community Services East Bay since 2005. Avi is a licensed clinical social worker with an extensive background in nonprofit administration, service delivery, and leadership, both within and outside of the Jewish community.
Avi received his B.A. from Brandeis University in 1976 and later earned an MSW from the University of Southern California and an M.A. in Jewish Communal Service from Hebrew Union College. Subsequent to his graduate education, Avi worked at Jewish Family Service in Los Angeles and later managed the pioneering AIDS program at Jewish Family and Children’s Services in San Francisco, for which he received the Louis Kraft Award for Outstanding Young Professional in Jewish Communal Service in 1988. Avi continued to work on HIV/AIDS issues for several decades, including a period serving as executive director of a national HIV treatment information and advocacy organization. He also worked extensively in the area of community-based health care for low-income people.
In 1989, Avi co-edited a groundbreaking anthology, Twice Blessed: On Being Lesbian or Gay and Jewish. He has been highly involved as a writer, speaker, and organizer with efforts to address LGBT and HIV/AIDS issues in religious communities and was a founding board member of the AIDS National Interfaith Network. In 1995, he was honored with KQED-TV’s Community Hero Award.
Avi was a longtime board member of the organization currently known as Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice and has served on many other boards of directors and planning and advisory bodies for agencies, foundations, and communities. In 2008, Avi was awarded an honorary doctorate of Jewish Communal Service by Hebrew Union College, recognizing his more than twenty-five years of leadership in the Jewish community.
Anna is a passionate advocate who has spent her career dedicated to advancing the rights of immigrants. She supervises the Immigration Legal Services program, which provides quality free and low-cost legal representation to residents of Contra Costa and Alameda counties. Prior to joining JFCS East Bay, Anna worked for nine years as an immigration attorney who represented clients in deportation defense hearings, in applications before the Department of Homeland Security, and in written appeals and motions filed with the Agency and Circuit Courts. She has successfully argued more than a dozen cases before the Ninth Circuit and briefed many more, resulting in multiple victories in both published and unpublished cases. Before that, Anna was a judicial law clerk at the San Francisco Immigration Court as a part of the DOJ’s Attorney General Honor’s Program. Prior to law school, Anna spent three years teaching fourth grade in San Jose, California. Anna received her J.D. from Golden Gate University School of Law, where she graduated with highest honors, and her B.A. from the University of Georgia magna cum laude. Anna is admitted to the bar in California.
Rita is a licensed social worker (LCSW) who served as JFCS East Bay’s Holocaust Survivor Services Program Manager for eight years prior to becoming Director of Adult Services in August 2013. She specializes in counseling with older adults, families, couples, and people who have experienced trauma. Rita has extensive expertise in Gerontology, including working with adults living with dementia, providing advice and support to family caregivers, advocacy in long-term care communities, and management of home care providers. Rita has over fifteen years of experience in medical social work and care management. Before becoming a social worker, Rita worked in clinical laboratory and medical sciences. Rita has a Master’s Degree in Social Welfare from UC Berkeley with a specialization in Gerontology and has been with JFCS East Bay since 2005.
Carol oversees JFCS East Bay’s services for Children & Parents and works with the agency’s department directors on program evaluation, professional development, and other cross-departmental issues. Carol is a licensed clinical social worker who has worked with children and families for more than thirty-five years. She received her MSW from UC Berkeley in 1983. Carol has expertise in child, individual, group, and family therapy, and she works extensively with parents on parenting skills and family dynamics. She has significant experience consulting to teachers and staff of preschoolers through high school age students. Carol is a graduate of the Harris Training Program and the Child Trauma Training Institute and currently specializes in parent-infant/child therapy and early childhood mental health consultation, particularly with children who have experienced trauma. She has extensive experience in program management and development and in clinical supervision. Prior to joining JFCS East Bay in 2001, Carol was a middle school therapist, as well as the director of a special education day treatment program serving severely emotionally disturbed children.
Amy is a licensed Marriage Family Therapist with more than thirty years of clinical experience working with children, adults, and families as well as clinical and program supervision. She has a deep expertise in working with trauma and toxic stress as well as early childhood mental health and cross-cultural mental health. Amy has done extensive work internationally, teaching and developing programs, and is a seasoned administrator and manager. She recently directed Parents Place, a model family resource center in San Francisco, and directed the Child Trauma Training Institute at JFCS in San Francisco. Amy served in JFCS East Bay’s clinical and early childhood programs from 1999 to 2006. She rejoined the agency in 2014 to direct our Refugee & Immigrant Services department.
Holly oversees JFCS East Bay’s work in the areas of development, marketing, communications, and volunteer services. She stewards the agency’s efforts to engage community members in many ways–as donors, prospective clients, volunteers, supporters, and advocates. Holly writes proposals and manages grant tracking and reporting; engages individual donors in the agency’s work; produces our publications and materials; manages the website and social media; and supervises the Volunteer Services program. An experienced grantwriter and editor, Holly is a graduate of UC Berkeley, where she majored in English and minored in French. She spent twelve years working for local book publishers before bringing her writing, editing, and project management skills to JFCS East Bay. She joined the agency in 2006.