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Head of School - Dr. Amittai Benami


Dr. Benami came to Rochester with a wealth of experience in formal and informal Jewish education, both in the United States and in Israel. The son of a Conservative Rabbi, Dr. Benami is himself the product of a Jewish Day School education. At Harvard University and Brandeis, he focused on Jewish Studies and Hebrew literature. He subsequently received his Ed.D in Curriculum and Supervision from Wayne State University, focusing  studies on spiritual education. In addition, he studied educational administration and psychology at the Hebrew University, Bar Ilan University, the University of Pittsburgh, and a specialized program with the Israel Ministry of Education. During his distinguished career, he has served as school principal, advisor/educational consultant and teacher at day schools, supplemental/synagogue schools, youth groups and prestigious experimental elementary schools in Israel and the United States. He comes to Rochester Hillel Community Day School from Los Angeles Hebrew High School where he is completing service as Head of School for eight years, following a position as Judaic Studies Director of the Solomon Schechter School in Queens, New York. Having lived and worked for ten years as a teacher and principal in the Israeli school system, he is a fluent Hebrew speaker. Dr. Benami’s passion for Jewish education is further reflected by his keen interest in the teaching of spirituality, his love of storytelling and, on the lighter side, his immense enjoyment and participation in guitar sing alongs. On a personal note, Dr. Benami is married to Lilly who grew up in Leningrad and immigrated to the United States in 1990. She has a degree in architecture and urban planning and works as an information technology business analyst. Dr. Benami’s proudest achievement has been raising his three children: Oz who studied engineering at Columbia University and works today in new York, Ilan who just completed Israeli army service as part of a specialized medical school army program at the Hadassah School of Medicine, and Noga, who is pursuing an MSW degree at Haifa University, following a BA from Bar Ilan University and many years of community service in Israel, including working with children at a shelter for battered religious women. In partnership with our students, parents, and the Board of Trustees, Dr. Benami is delighted to guide and lead Rochester Hillel Community Day School with creativity and vision as it continues to implement a 21st century state of the art educational program.

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