Selecting the Winners
Public Voting and Expert Judges
There will be nine winning videos. Three will be chosen through expert judging and six chosen by public voting.

Voting will be open from 9:00 am Eastern Time (ET) on Wednesday, November 21, 2012 through 11:59 pm ET on Wednesday, December 12, 2012. Viewers can vote for each video once by clicking on its “thumbs-up” icon. The videos with the highest number of votes will be named the Public Voting winners. (See our Distribution Resources for tips on how to promote your video.)

For the videos judged by our panel of judges, each video will be ranked on a scale of 1 to 5 based on the following criteria:
  • Entertainment
  • Clarity of Expression
  • Effectiveness at answering the contest question: “How did your day school education help make you the person, and the Jew, you are today? Tell us the story of the experiences and the people who inspired you.”

Judges Bios
  • Mem Bernstein:
      Mem Dryan Bernstein, -- venture philanthropist, -- is a Trustee of three major foundations:  the AVI CHAI Foundation, a leader in Jewish education; Keren Keshet – The Rainbow Foundation, whose signature project, Nextbook, promotes Jewish literature, culture, and ideas through public programs, the Jewish Encounters books series, and its website,; and The Tikvah Fund, which supports programs and projects that educate Jewish intellectual, political, and religious leaders in Israel and the Diaspora.  In the late 1980s, Mrs. Bernstein authored two books that resonate with today’s baby boom generation:  Aging Parents and You published in the U.S., and The Sandwich Generation, published in Israel.

  • Seth Bernstein:
      Seth Bernstein, whose company, Eidetic Production, provides full service design and production, began his professional career working during the summers in Ithaca, NY. While an undergraduate at Brandeis University studying Linguistic Anthropology and Psychology, he transformed himself into the school's in-house video production department. He produced six fully funded videos for various departments during his time there and teamed up with local video installation artist Mary Hamill on an interactive exhibition at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts. After graduation, Seth received a commission from the Wolk Foundation to direct a documentary about Jewish Identity in Post-Soviet Ukraine. Over the course of two insane months, he traveled the Ukrainian countryside with a translator and an assistant, interviewing anyone who would talk about the rediscovery of their Judaism after nearly 40 years under a Soviet regime that outlawed religion. After returning to the states in 2006, Seth moved to New York where he setup shop as a freelancer. Since then, he has worked in every conceivable aspect of lighting design from fashion to theater to television and back again. Simultaneously, he continues to direct moving and poignant documentaries for non-profit and broadcast clients throughout the United States. When he's not working or traveling, Seth can be found jogging around whatever city/town/village he currently calls home.

  • Miriam Brosseau:
      Miriam Brosseau hails from the great state of Wisconsin; she graduated from UW-Madison (go Badgers) in 2006 with a dual degree in Jewish Studies and Modern Hebrew. Miriam also holds a masters in Jewish Professional Studies from Spertus College in Chicago. Miriam is a Jewish professional by day, working at the intersection of community and technology as Associate Director of Network Initiatives at The Jewish Education Project and Darim Online. By night she is the rock star lead singer of “biblegum pop” duo Stereo Sinai (the other half of the band is her husband, producer Alan Jay Sufrin - listen at Miriam is a member of the ROI community of young Jewish innovators and was named to The Jewish Week's "36 Under 36" list of change-makers in the New York area in 2012. She blogs at and can be found on Twitter as @miriamjayne.

  • Holly Cohen:
      Holly Cohen is the executive director of the Kohelet Foundation. Prior to her work at the Kohelet Foundation, Holly operated a solo law practice and volunteered for numerous organizations in the Philadelphia Jewish community. Passionate about Jewish education and children, she served as a board member of OROT, The Friendship Circle and Torah Academy of Greater Philadelphia and has provided legal counsel to these organizations. Holly, a native Philadelphian, is an alumna of Solomon Schechter Hebrew Day School and Akiba Hebrew Academy. She received her B.A. at New York University and J.D. at Temple University School of Law. Holly resides in Merion Station, Pennsylvania, with her husband, Leib Meadvin and their family.

  • Rick Magder:
      After attending film school in Hollywood, Rick embarked on a career developing and producing TV, feature films, special interest programs and interactive media. Together with his father and two brothers, the Magders built Magder Studios, one of the largest entertainment companies in Canada. Their films have starred some of Hollywood’s best-known names. After moving to New York in 1997, Magder turned his attention to developing innovative Jewish content for a variety of media. He was responsible for creating the department of Media and Broadcasting for the Orthodox Union His documentary work led him to interviewing such politicians as President Carter, President Ford, Hillary Clinton, Ted Kennedy, Rudolf Giulliani, Jean Kirkpatrick and many others. While there, his interest in children's content led to the creation of the animated show Tinker Shop Tales and the Prince of Egypt Haggadah, developed in partnership with DreamWorks. As the manager of, Magder was intrumental in growing the site to over 400,000 unique visitors each month making it one of the largest websites in the Jewish world. With his brother Gary, Rick created Project Sinai , an online education and distance learning platform providing content to thousands of registered users. In addition to ongoing film projects, Rick is currently working with the Afikim Foundation developing many innovative media projects for the Jewish communities around the world.

  • Lesley Said Matsa:
      Lesley Matsa is Program Officer for Jewish Giving at the Crown Family Philanthropies. Her prior work experience includes advising non-profit organizations facing strategic problems as a Consultant at Wellspring Consulting, management consulting in the for-profit sector, and working as Program Coordinator at UC Berkeley Hillel.  Lesley holds an MBA from Harvard Business School, and a Bachelor’s degree with highest honors from the University of California, Berkeley.

  • Matt Mindell:
      Matt Mindell is the writer, director and producer of The Lion of Judah (2012), a documentary that tells the story of Holocaust survivor Leo Zisman, who leads a group of young adults on a journey through humanity’s darkest period. He is also the Executive Director of the non-profit Jewish Enrichment Center (JEC) in Manhattan, where people in their 20s and 30s come together to learn, socialize, and become inspired by participating in such activities as taking classes on Jewish philosophy, studying Hebrew and traveling to Israel. After starring in The Survivor, a play based on a Jewish gang that fought the German army in the Warsaw Ghetto, he was inspired to learn more about his Jewish identity. He journeyed to Israel, where he fell in love with the land and its people. A few years later, he returned to New York as the Northeastern Director of Steven Spielberg’s Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation, where he spearheaded the documentation of “Spiritual Bravery,” an oral history of the religious traditions upheld by Jews who were imprisoned in the concentration camps. A graduate of the NYU Tisch School of the Arts with a major in film and acting, Mindell previously starred in several commercials for major brands. He also appeared on Saved by the Bell, and in several movies including Big and Change of Seasons with Eli Wallach.

  • Linda Scherzer:
      Linda Scherzer is the Program Director for “Write On for Israel,” which trains a select group of high school students to become advocates for Israel through journalism. Linda is a former Mideast correspondent for CNN and Israel Television with extensive experience covering the Arab-Israeli conflict. During her years with CNN, she covered the first Palestinian intifada, the Gulf War and Mideast peace process. Scherzer was the only North American ever to work as an on-air correspondent for Mabat, Israel Television’s Hebrew news program, where she covered Arab and Palestinian affairs. She traveled to Damascus twice to report on Syrian attitudes towards the peace process and produced a one-hour documentary, “Through the Eyes of Enemies: Is the Middle East Ready for Peace” which explores opinion in Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt towards Israel. Prior to joining CNN, Scherzer worked for WPTZ-TV, the NBC affiliate in Burlington, Vermont where she won five Associated Press Broadcasters Awards. Scherzer was also part of the CNN team to win a Cable Ace award for distinguished coverage of the Gulf War. Today, Scherzer is a media and public relations consultant, and advises the Jewish community on how to confront negative media images from Israel.

  • Daniel Septimus:
      Daniel Septimus is the CEO of MyJewishLearning, Inc., a not-for-profit web publisher that educates and engages hundreds of thousands of people every month. Daniel is the founder of Kveller​.com, MJL’s parenting website, and was a founding editor of MyJewishLearning​.com. Daniel serves on the Board of Directors of Encounter and was a co-founder of Altshul, an inde­pen­dent minyan in Brooklyn. 

  • Beverly Shaffer:
      Beverly Shaffer is an internationally acclaimed filmmaker in Montreal, Canada.  She spent 25 years with the National Film Board of Canada (NFB), directing short documentaries and dramas, including I'll Find a Way, a documentary about a young girl with spida bifida that won the 1977 Academy Award for best live action short film. The film was one of ten films in her Children of Canada series. Shaffer won more than thirty international awards in her years with the NFB. To a Safer Place (1987) was an uplifting story of an incest survivor in her thirties who succeeded in building a fulfilling life after years of abuse. Shaffer directed seven episodes in the Children of Jerusalem series, featuring profiles of Arab and Jewish youth, including the titles Children of Jerusalem: Gesho and Children of Jerusalem: Yehuda. She also directed Just a Wedding (1999), a docudrama sequel to I’ll Find a Way. Her last film for the NFB was Mr. Mergler's Gift.

  • Tamar Snyder:
      Tamar serves as the Associate Director of Strategic Initiatives and Communications at Jewish Communal Fund (, the largest Jewish donor advised fund in the country, managing $1 billion in charitable assets. An award-winning journalist, Tamar worked for several years as a staff writer at The Jewish Week in New York, where she covered social entrepreneurship and philanthropy. She holds a master's degree in journalism from Columbia Journalism School, a Masters in Public Administration (MPA) from NYU/Wagner, and an MA in Hebrew and Judaic Studies from NYU. Her byline has appeared in the Wall Street Journal, The Staten Island Advance, Edutopia, Inc. Magazine, and a variety of other publications.