Dan has always been enamored with Maccabi USA and its mission of using Sports to Build Jewish Pride and connect athletes to each other and their culture & heritage. Learn more about Dan and how he plans to build a broader Maccabi USA Alumni community.

Dan has always identified as a Jewish athlete. He started competing in Judo at the age of six and his teacher was a family friend, Lou Moyerman, who was already involved with Maccabi USA. As a young athlete, Dan had the opportunity to watch Lou prepare for the Maccabiah Games and knew how special it was; it became something he aspired to do. His first experience with the Maccabiah Games was as a coach/athlete for the Open Judo team at the 16th Maccabiah Games in 2001 where he won a team bronze medal. He had the opportunity to repeat that experience in the same role at the 17th Maccabiah Games in 2005, winning another team bronze medal.

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(Dan pictured second from left on left photo and the left end on the right photo)

Dan has stayed involved with Maccabi USA as a manager, serving as Associate Team Manager at the 18th and 19th World Maccabiah Games in Israel and as the Team Manager at the European Maccabi Games in Berlin in 2015. When asked why he has stayed involved with Maccabi USA, Dan quickly replied, “The mission of the organization just spoke to me. Using sports to build Jewish Pride and help break the stereotypes that have hovered over Jewish athletes was very important to me. And of course, after having the opportunity to wear USA on your back as you march into the Opening Ceremony is an unforgettable experience; and I have done whatever I can to help others have that same life-changing opportunity.”

Dan’s first career was in art conservation and he had some amazing opportunities in that field. After the ISRAEL CONNECT program at his first Maccabiah Games in 2001, he sat on a beach reflecting on his recent experience and his life and decided he wanted to move his career in a direction where he could help others and contribute more towards society. Upon his return he moved into the education field where he held various positions in program development and implementation, consulting, and most recently as principal for a K-8 public school in Philadelphia.

After returning from Berlin as the Team Manager in 2015 and reflecting on the phenomenal experience he had just had, he felt he wanted to continue to make a greater impact on society in another role. During this time, he learned about the newly-developed Alumni Relations Director position at Maccabi USA and felt it would be a natural fit. This was the second time he changed career direction to focus on providing service to others after participating in a life-changing Maccabi experience.

“I’d always hoped to have the opportunity to be more involved [in Maccabi USA] and didn’t imagine the possibility of working as a member of the professional staff,” Dan reflected when talking about what compelled him to apply for this new position. “I was excited about the opportunity to re-engage alumni with the organization and to keep those already engaged more involved in order to build a broader community of Maccabi USA nationally.”

“People have a lasting memory and emotional connection to their Maccabi experience,” Dan continued. “I want to find ways to help them ‘re-kindle’ that emotional connection and recapture that feeling of pride of representing your country and being at the top of your game. I want them to draw from that experience and tap into that seminal moment of their Jewish identity.”

Dan will work on building the Maccabi USA Alumni Association by creating an infrastructure and engaging alumni at the local level. He hopes to do this developing local chapters in key regions with the support of Regional Chairs. The chapters will program and market activities that will include alumni and sport-specific reunions, happy hours, meet & greet sessions, team send-off parties, competitions and games.

Everyone at Maccabi USA is excited to help and support Dan as he develops Alumni Association chapters and programming. To stay involved and engaged, make sure to stay connected through social media. You can connect with Dan and the Alumni Association on Facebook at Maccabi USA Alumni and on Instagram and Twitter @MaccabiAlumni.

Dan and his wife Lisa live in suburban Philadelphia with their children Olivia and Everett, who are both avid soccer players.

 

Previously:

Emily Seelenfreund: A Maccabiah Trailblazer

Ellie Greenberg: In Her Own Words

From Maccabi Canada to Maccabi USA: Ice Hockey with Greg Gardner

From Running in to Coaching at the Maccabiah with Jordan Schilit

Building Maccabi USA’s Lacrosse Program with Eve Levinson

Maccabi USA Baseball with Eric Holtz

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

The first time Emily Seelenfreund played Wheelchair Basketball as an 11 year old, she was hooked. Born with Osteogenesis imperfecta, or Brittle Bone Disease, which is characterized by fragile bones that break easily, she never thought she’d be able to play sports at a high level competitively. “I fell in love immediately with the team aspect and competitiveness of basketball,” recalls Emily. That moment marked the beginning of a prestigious Wheelchair Basketball career for her, culminating with her participation at the 2013 World Maccabiah Games.

Emily played as much basketball as she possibly could, competing throughout middle school and high school, eventually earning a scholarship to play at the University of Alabama. During her time at college where she studied Political Science and History, Emily won three National Championships with Alabama’s Wheelchair Basketball program, was a member of the USA under-25 team that won gold at the 2011 Women’s World Wheelchair Basketball Championships, and was selected as an alternate for the 2012 London Paralympics. After graduating from college, Emily moved to New Mexico to take part in the “Teach for America” program, figuring her successful Wheelchair Basketball career had ended.

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(Emily pictured center, wearing jersey #21)

While living and teaching on the Navajo Nation in New Mexico, Emily was approached by Stu Greenberg, USA Organizing Committee Paralympic Sports Chairman for the 19th World Maccabiah Games in 2013. He asked her to consider representing Team USA on a team that also included a few Canadian and Dutch players. “I was hesitant to go, it was going to be a crazy hard year of teaching for me,” remembers Emily. “Knowing it was the first time Paralympic Basketball was offered at the Maccabiah Games, I had to be there to represent the USA in Israel, a country that’s very important to me, as it is the birthplace of my grandfather and home to my aunt and cousins, at an event that is so much bigger than sports.”

Emily’s most memorable moment as a Wheelchair Basketball athlete occurred prior to the gold medal match at the 2013 World Maccabiah Games. “Before the championship game, we hadn’t had huge crowds. But the Maccabiah organizers posted ads and ran buses to that game, and the stadium was completely full,” said Emily. “Even though we eventually lost the game, what a special moment it was to come into this packed gym and see all that support.”

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(Team USA from the 2013 World Maccabiah Games)

These days, Emily is in her second year at Harvard Law School, with the ultimate goal of working in Disability Rights advocacy after graduation. For now, she plans on applying for Team USA for the 2017 World Maccabiah Games, which will mark the first time that the United States has a solely American squad. “Being one of the first Paralympic Basketball players at the Maccabiah Games was very special,” remarks Emily. “I want to continue to build this wonderful program and be a part of its tremendous growth.”

Maccabi USA is currently seeking qualified Jewish Paralympic Basketball players to represent Team USA at the 20th World Maccabiah Games on a Mixed Gender team for those ages 18-35. To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Stan Corn, Paralympic Basketball Chairman, at 804.221.3900 or stancorn@reagan.com.

 

Previously:

Ellie Greenberg: In Her Own Words

From Maccabi Canada to Maccabi USA: Ice Hockey with Greg Gardner

From Running in to Coaching at the Maccabiah with Jordan Schilit

Building Maccabi USA’s Lacrosse Program with Eve Levinson

Maccabi USA Baseball with Eric Holtz

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

For the past few weeks, I have had the privilege of working alongside the Maccabi USA team at their headquarters in Philadelphia. I was tasked with “helping Maccabi USA improve its Marketing Communications platform by focusing on Digital Media.” The people I was surrounded with everyday created such a warm and welcoming atmosphere, and I am so grateful for their willingness to include me in their work environment. So – thank you Maccabi USA for the amazing externship experience you gave me!

As I stepped into the stadium for the Opening Ceremony of the 2015 Pan American Maccabi Games carrying the USA banner, I felt an enormous amount of pride. I heard “USA” announced on the loudspeaker and watched as the Americans in the stands cheered us on. I looked around and saw teams from Brazil, Cuba, and Uruguay…. So many people, how could they all be Jewish? After all the teams were called, the Opening Ceremony fittingly began with the Israeli National Anthem. I was dressed in stars and stripes, my neighbor in yellow and green, but there we were, together, singing the same words of Hatikvah.

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(Ellie is holding the left most banner and is third from the left)

That is the beauty of Maccabi; while my life is vastly different from the defender marking me on the field, we do share significant similarities. Nationality and language aside, we both love to play soccer and embrace our Jewish background.

Despite our similarities, I still had much to learn from these other Maccabi athletes.

My team faced Brazil in the finals. And while Brazil was our competition, they represented a type of sportsmanship I had never before experienced.

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As the final whistle blew, I ran to my teammates with excitement. We had just won the gold! But amid our celebrations, I failed to notice what was happening on the sideline.

The Brazilian captain had approached the referee and asked to present Team USA with their gold medals.

And suddenly, each member of Brazil’s team was hanging a medal around our necks. These girls were so encouraging and excited for us, clapping and celebrating; I doubt I will ever again encounter sportsmanship similar that exhibited by Brazil’s team.

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Having experienced the 2013 World Maccabiah Games in Israel, I was tentative about traveling to Santiago for Pan Am. I had such an incredible experience in Tel Aviv, I could not imagine anything could compare. But I was wrong. Chile and Israel were each such unique, amazing Games, complete with different teammates and different experiences, but both with the same underlying concept: Building Jewish Pride Through Sports.

I applied for the 2017 Maccabiah games for the same reason I traveled to Chile this past December – the experiences Maccabi USA has given to me and the memories made while at these competitions are so unique, so fun, and so meaningful. I have made some of my best friends through Maccabi, and I hope that I can represent the USA next summer in Israel!

Maccabi USA is currently seeking qualified Jewish Soccer players to represent Team USA at the 20th World Maccabiah Games in the following divisions: Juniors Girls (Born 1999-2002) & Boys (Born 2001-2002), Youth Men (Born 1999-2000), Open Men & Women (Ages 18-35) and Masters Men (Ages 35+ & Ages 45+). To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director, at 215.561.6900 x. 4147 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

From Maccabi Canada to Maccabi USA: Ice Hockey with Greg Gardner

From Running in to Coaching at the Maccabiah with Jordan Schilit

Building Maccabi USA’s Lacrosse Program with Eve Levinson

Maccabi USA Baseball with Eric Holtz

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

Greg Gardner was the first player EVER signed by the then-expansion Columbus Blue Jackets of the National Hockey League on May 4, 2000; he is now aiming to become the first Head Coach of Maccabi USA’s Open Men’s Hockey team to capture the gold medal at the World Maccabiah Games.

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(Greg signing his contract with Columbus)

A native of Westside, Toronto, Greg is in his third year as the Assistant Men’s Ice Hockey coach at Mercyhurst University in Pennsylvania, his tenth year as an NCAA Division 1 coach. He grew up as many Canadian children do, with a hockey stick glued to his hands. He found his calling as a Goalie playing Triple AAA hockey and travelling throughout Canada competing, eventually earning a four-year scholarship to play at Niagara University in New York. He achieved great success there, leading the NCAA in goals against average during the 1999-2000 season and setting the record for the most shutouts in a season in the process.

In 1996, during the summer before his sophomore year of college, his father approached him with an idea. “A newspaper advertisement came across my dad’s desk for something called the Maccabiah Games,” recalled Greg. “I wasn’t too sure what to expect, but I drove to Montreal and made Team Canada.”

Generally the only Jewish athlete on his teams throughout his youth and college, Greg’s experience in Israel in 1997 helped shape him into who he is today. “Playing in the Maccabiah Games is an incredible memory and one I’ve carried with me forever,” exclaimed Greg. “It’s an experience that can’t properly be explained unless you are a part of it.” In an ironic twist, Greg led Maccabi Canada to the gold medal in Open Men’s Ice Hockey at the 1997 World Maccabiah Games, defeating Team USA in the finals.

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(Greg in 1997  wearing a USA jersey (center)… He swapped jerseys with Team USA’s Goalie)

Despite his success on the ice, Gardner’s best memories from the Games happened off the ice. They include: Going to the Western Wall and travelling throughout the desert with his teammates, walking on the border of Lebanon through Metula, and traversing Masada. “Winning a medal is/was important,” explained Greg. “But it’s really about connecting with Israel and forming relationships with Jewish athletes on your team and from around the world.”

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(Team Canada posing on a tank in Israel at the 1997 World Maccabiah Games)

As the Head Coach of the USA Open Men’s Ice Hockey team at the 2017 World Maccabiah Games, Greg’s goals are twofold. He wants to provide his team with the right environment for them to experience a lifetime of memories, and of course to win a gold medal. “The goal is to bring the team together quickly, have an experience of a lifetime prior to playing Hockey and then perform at the highest level possible during the competition,” said Greg. “I feel blessed to have this experience and opportunity to be a role model for these young men at the Maccabiah and in Israel.”

Maccabi USA is currently seeking Jewish Ice Hockey players for a Juniors Boys’ team, for those born between 1999-2002, an Open Men’s team, 18-39, and a Masters Men’s team, ages 40+. To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director, at 215.561.6900 x. 4147 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

From Running in to Coaching at the Maccabiah with Jordan Schilit

Building Maccabi USA’s Lacrosse Program with Eve Levinson

Maccabi USA Baseball with Eric Holtz

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

By his own estimation, the 2005 World Maccabiah Games changed Jordan Schilit’s life. “Going to Israel (in 2005) as an athlete truly opened my eyes to the whole Jewish experience and gave me a chance to find one of my greatest passions, Track & Field,” recalled Jordan. “The sport was new to me at the time. Those Games made me want to do something meaningful with Track & Field.” Today, Jordan is the Assistant Coach for the Men’s & Women’s Track & Field team at Middlebury College in Vermont and will serve as the Head Coach for Team USA’s Juniors Track & Field team at the 2017 World Maccabiah Games!

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(Jordan at the 2005 World Maccabiah Games)

After the 2005 Games, Jordan was hooked on the sport and would begin a career filled with personal and team achievements. Schilit attended Haverford College as an undergraduate, helping Haverford win their first ever NCAA team championship, and was a six-time NCAA Division III All-American in both Track & Field as well as Cross Country. After graduation, he competed professionally for the prestigious Nike Oregon Track Club Elite. In his own words, much of his success throughout his career stems from his coach in 2005, Todd Wolin. “I attribute a lot of my success to him and what he taught me in Israel,” exclaimed Jordan. “I didn’t even think about running in college, and here I am as an All-American, in many ways thanks to the direction and guidance I received from Coach Wolin.”

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(Jordan with Nike Oregon Track Club Elite)

In 2013, Jordan returned to Israel with Team USA as a member of the Open Men’s Track and Field team. Coming into those Games, he felt very confident in his abilities as a runner, having just graduated from Haverford with his aforementioned decorations. Unfortunately, Jordan contracted mononucleosis prior to the Games and knew he wasn’t going to be able to perform to his standards. That didn’t stop Jordan from sharing a very special moment with his family.

The Opening Ceremony at the World Maccabiah Games are special for nearly everyone involved, with thousands of Jewish athletes from around the world marching into Teddy Stadium in Jerusalem supported by tens of thousands of Jews. “Somehow, I spotted my parents in the crowd,” remembers Jordan. “It was a very special moment for me to go over and jump the barriers and take a picture with them. I will never forget that.”

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(Jordan and his parents Karen and Keith at the Opening Ceremony of the 2013 Maccabiah)

Jordan hopes to impact his athletes in 2017 the way his coaches did for him in 2005 and beyond. “For many, this will be a once in a lifetime opportunity. I want to offer all the knowledge I have, and really want to effect and impact their lives like Coach Wolin and others did for me,” exclaimed Jordan. “The whole Maccabi experience is coming full circle for me, and I couldn’t be more excited!”

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(Jordan running for Haverford College)

Maccabi USA is currently seeking Jewish Track & Field athletes for Juniors Boys’ and Girls’ teams, for those born between 1999-2002, as well as Open Men’s and Women’s teams, ages 18-35. To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director, at 215.561.6900 x. 4147 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

Building Maccabi USA’s Lacrosse Program with Eve Levinson

Maccabi USA Baseball with Eric Holtz

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

For the first time in history, Lacrosse will be played at the World Maccabiah Games, and Team USA has tasked Eve Levinson to lay the roots for the long-term success of Maccabi USA’s Lacrosse program.

This isn’t the first time Eve has started a program; she was the first Head Coach for Philadelphia’s JCC Maccabi Games Lacrosse team in 2010, and again in 2011.  She was also the first Head Women’s Lacrosse Coach for Mercer University, who compete in Division 1 of the NCAA. “I am thrilled to be at the forefront of another Lacrosse program,” remarked Eve. “It’s an honor to put your own stamp on a program and build it in the way you think it will have lasting success.”

Eve Mercer

At the JCC Maccabi Games, Eve enjoyed watching her players interact with their opponents. “I watched my athletes connect with girls from around the country who were Jewish athletes, which many of them weren’t used to,” recalls Levinson. This is one of her ultimate goals for the upcoming Maccabiah Games – to encourage her girls to foster these types of relationships.  “The Maccabiah is all about learning about your Jewish community, making this experience much more than just competition.”

Make no mistake, Eve wants to leave Israel and the first-ever Maccabiah Lacrosse competition as gold medalists. That being said, it was the third thing she mentioned when asked what she was looking to accomplish in Israel. “It’s always fun to win, especially for your country,” she explained. “But, I want to make sure our girls come together as a team off of the field and build their personal Lacrosse community, both in the United States and abroad.”

Maccabi Team

(Eve with her team from the 2010 JCC Maccabi Games)

In addition to serving as Maccabi USA’s Chairperson for the Lacrosse program, Eve is also on the board of Maccabi Young Leadership’s Philadelphia chapter.

Maccabi USA is currently seeking Jewish Lacrosse players for the Juniors Girls’ team for those born between 1999-2002, and the Open Women’s team, ages 18-35. To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director, at 215.561.6900 x. 4147 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

Maccabi USA Baseball with Eric Holtz

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

Right off the bat, two things are clear; Eric Holtz, the Head Coach of Maccabi USA’s Juniors Boys’ Baseball team for the 2017 World Maccabiah Games, loves Israel and loves baseball. “Going to Israel brings out everything in you about being alive,” remarks Holtz, who was the Assistant Coach of the same age team that won a gold medal at the 2013 World Maccabiah Games. “Being there for baseball is the cherry on top.”

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Born and raised in the Bronx, Baseball has always played a major role in Eric’s life. Upon finishing his education, Eric entered the corporate world, but the itch for baseball never left him. He acted as the Hitting Coach for Manhattanville College’s Baseball team from 2004-2007 and also as the Assistant Coach for the Softball team in 2007, when they won their first-ever Skyline Conference championship. Having manufactured clothing for 25+ years, Eric yearned to get back to playing baseball; he just never assumed his return would come about the way it did.

In 2007, the Israeli Baseball League was founded. “On a whim, I went to go try out for this new goofy league,” he recalls. “Here I was, surrounded by college kids. I had a great day, and with my coaching experience, they offered me a contract to spend nine weeks in Israel as a player/manager for the Bet Shemesh Blue Sox.” It was his first time in Israel; his wife and three kids visited for three of those weeks. “Basically, I fell in love with the country,” he says. Although the league disbanded after one year, Eric left his mark, as he was presented with the Commissioner’s Award for Distinguished Service.

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Eric’s roommate during his time in the Israeli Baseball League was Nate Fish, himself a four-time Maccabi USA alumnus and the Head Coach of Maccabi USA’s Juniors Boys’ Baseball team at the 2013 Maccabiah. “He (Nate) basically became my little brother when we were in Israel together,” explained Holtz.  Fast forward to 2013, and Nate has been named the Juniors Head Coach for the Maccabiah. “He calls me up and goes ‘Holtzy, what do you think about coaching at the Maccabiah?’”, remembers Eric. “For me, the opportunity to return to Israel and take kids that had never been there before and give them the experience I had in 2007 was one that I could not turn down.”

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(Juniors Boys’ Baseball team from the 2013 World Maccabiah Games)

To Eric’s surprise, he remembers his time in 2013 as taking on a greater meaning outside of baseball, and plans to impart that mind-set on his players in 2017. As he put it, “Sure, winning is obvious, but it’s more important to me to instill the feeling I have for Israel in the 16 or 18 young men who will be joining me on this trip.”

Today, he is the owner and founder of Game On 13, a baseball and softball strength and conditioning training facility located in Westchester County, New York.

Maccabi USA is currently seeking Juniors Boys’ Baseball players, born from 1999-2002, for the 2017 World Maccabiah Games. To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director at 215.561.6900 x. 4147 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

From the Maccabiah to Maccabi Young Leadership

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

Hannah Marks has been involved with Maccabi USA since before her first birthday, literally. Her father, Bruce Marks, was an athlete on Team USA’s Masters Basketball team at the 1989 Maccabiah Games, and Hannah followed. Although she admittedly has no memories from her time in Israel, the seeds were planted, thus beginning Hannah’s lifelong support of Maccabi USA.

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A self-described “sports fanatic that is bad at sports,” Hannah has found other ways besides being on the field or court to stay involved with athletics. Growing up, she tried various sports, but none stuck as “her” sport. “As soon as the other girls got skills that surpassed my natural height advantage, I stopped playing sports, but still stuck with coaching and managing, because I love being around sports,” remarked Hannah. Prior to the 2005 Maccabiah Games, Hannah interned in Maccabi USA’s offices, lending an extra hand as the office got hectic as happens prior to any international Games. As a student at Abington High School in suburban Philadelphia, Hannah needed to complete a service project in order to graduate. Naturally, she chose to coach a team in the Junior Jewish Basketball League. “Basketball has always been a big part of my life and my family’s,” she explained.

In advance of the 2013 Maccabiah Games, Maccabi USA was looking for one more Management Staff member to round out the team; in stepped Hannah. “It was the best news ever,” she said. “I love Maccabi USA, so this was my way of staying involved in the organization as a non-athlete.”  Although she had been on Birthright, her experience on the ISRAEL CONNECT program gave her the opportunity to get to know Israel on a more personal level, specifically Jerusalem, where she was based with the Open Men’s Soccer team. She also left Israel with new, lifelong friends, such as Candice Schmutzler, an Athletic Trainer that was also bunkered with the Soccer team. At the time of the Maccabiah, Hannah had just graduated from the University of Wisconsin and was looking for work. “The 2013 Maccabiah Games were a catalyst for me for really good things,” she exclaimed. “I grew more as a person than I ever thought I was going to.”

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(As pictured from L-R: Candice Schmutzler, Hannah Marks)

After the Games, Hannah knew she had to stay involved with Maccabi USA. Later, she received an email introducing Maccabi Young Leadership (MYL) in Philadelphia. “It was a no-brainer for me,” she said. “Maccabi has been a part of my life at all different points, this just felt natural.” As the Outreach Chair for MYL Philadelphia, Hannah hopes to reach more young Jewish professionals like herself that love sports, but don’t necessarily play them. “I feel the need to bridge the gap for non-athletes to be involved in the Maccabi Movement. I want to bring awareness of all the good that Maccabi does to those who aren’t athletes, as there are other ways to be connected to this organization,” she explained.

In addition to being the Outreach Chair for MYL Philadelphia, Hannah is the General Manager of ZogSports- Philadelphia, “the nation’s largest charity-oriented, co-ed, social sports league”, according to its website.

Maccabi USA is currently seeking Management Staff for the 2017 World Maccabiah Games. To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director at 215.561.6900 x. 4147 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

Maccabi USA Cricket led my Former Israeli National Team Cricketer

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

Against Harrow CC

Former Israeli National team Cricketer Isaac Solson is actively seeking Jewish American Cricketers to represent Maccabi USA at the 2017 World Maccabiah Games. This is only the second time that Maccabi USA will be fielding a Cricket Team at the Maccabiah Games, the first time occurring in 1973.

Isaac Solson was only seven years old when he played in his first Cricket match. Born in 1949 to a Bene Israel (a historic community of Jews in India) family in Karachi, Pakistan, Solson recalls the difficulties of growing up Jewish in a country whose officially declared religion was Muslim. “Thankfully, as I improved as a Cricketer, people began to focus more on my athletic ability than the fact that I was Jewish,” exclaimed Isaac. He was admitted to the prestigious St. Patrick’s College of Karachi in 1969, where he maintained the highest batting average in the city of Karachi, which was then home to over 10 million people.

With my Cricket Trophies

In 1971, Isaac was chosen to play for Karachi University. Not for the first or last time, Isaac was the only Jew on his team. In October of the same year, Isaac made Aliyah to Israel, where he quickly made an impression among the Israeli Cricket community, being named the “Most Promising Cricketer” by the committee. He would go on to serve as Israel’s Vice-Captain at the 1979 Cricket Mini World Cup, and was a member of Israel’s 1982 and 1986 Cricket World Cup teams.

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(Isaac is in the front row, 4th from the left)

Prior to the 9th World Maccabiah Games In 1973, Isaac was approached to represent Israel, which he gladly accepted. It was the first time that Isaac played on an all-Jewish team. “I went from always being the only Jew on my team to being on a team filled with Jews,” he recalls. “What a great experience that was for me.” He would go on to represent Israel at the next three Maccabiah Games in 1977, 1981 & 1985, winning two bronze medals along the way.

Isaac moved to the United States in 1989 and now lives in Tampa, Florida with his wife Sheba, with whom he has four grown children. “Cricket has given my life so much, I feel the need to give back,” said Isaac, as he explained his involvement with Maccabi USA. “Moving to Israel and playing in the Maccabiah Games helped change and shape my life, and I can’t wait to give back to the next generation of Jewish American Cricketers.”

With Maccabi USA President Ron Carner

(Isaac with Maccabi USA President Ron Carner)

Maccabi USA is currently seeking Jewish Cricketers, ages 18+, to represent the United States at the 2017 World Maccabiah Games on the Open Cricket team! To apply, click HERE! For more information, please contact Shane Carr, Program Director, at 267.627.5647 or scarr@maccabiusa.com.

 

Previously:

Judo: A Family Affair with Adam Moyerman

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!

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(Lou and Adam Moyerman)

Judo and Judaism go hand-in-hand for Adam Moyerman, and by extension the entire Moyerman clan. Before Adam competed with Maccabi USA for the first time at the 2001 World Maccabiah Games, he was already a part of the organization, due in part to his father Lou’s involvement, which began in 1981. In advance of the 1997 World Maccabiah Games, Adam interned in the Maccabi USA offices, packing up the apparel packages. Now, 20 years later, Adam has competed in and coached at six international Maccabi Games, winning six medals and one MVP award.

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(The Judo team from the 2001 Maccabiah Games. Adam in the middle-front)

Growing up, participating in Judo was “basically a mandate,” as Adam put it, in the Moyerman household, as Lou has been heavily involved in the sport for over 40 years. “I’ve been doing it since I was seven. It’s the longest relationship of my life, minus my family of course,” joked Adam. After wrestling throughout high school, Adam rediscovered Judo in college within a less regimented and stressful environment; he immediately fell back in love with the sport. Upon graduating from Boston University, he began training to qualify for the Olympics. Although he finished third in qualifying and therefore didn’t make the Olympic team, he says he’s received fantastic international sporting experience through Maccabi USA. “You won’t always go to the Olympics, but these Games give you that experience – where you can appreciate your hard work, and on top of that, everyone is Jewish and you get to make those connections,” he explained.

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(Team USA Judo from the 2015 Pan American Maccabi Games)

Adam was chosen alongside Lauren Greenberg, Open Swimming, and Dallen Stanford, Open Rugby, to lead the Team USA delegation and carry the USA flag into the Opening Ceremony of the 2015 Pan American Maccabi Games. “Carrying the flag in was the best moment,” recalled Adam. “So few people get to do that at a sporting event or any event in general; I never thought I would have that extreme honor.”

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(USA Flagbearers- Lauren Greenberg, Dallen Stanford, Adam Moyerman)

It’s safe to say that Maccabi USA holds a special place in Adam’s heart; his siblings Sam, Stephanie and Tina have all competed with Maccabi USA as well. “Not everyone has the opportunity to form these bonds with Judaism,” he said. “The Maccabi Games reinvigorates people within their Judaism, and I can’t think of any other organization that combines sports, something we ALL love, with Judaism, like Maccabi USA.” When asked if he planned on continuing his involvement and support of the organization in the future, Adam merely laughed. “Of course!”

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(Sam, Lou and Adam Moyerman at the 2015 Pan American Maccabi Games)

Applications for the 2017 World Maccabiah Games are available NOW… Click HERE to apply)

 

Previously:

Tennis in Santiago with Natasha Dabrowski

Maccabi USA Golf with Dan Frankel

Swimming for a Purpose with Sarah Solomon

Maccabi USA Field Hockey with Rebekah Abrams

Breaking the International Maccabi Games Golf Scoring Record at the European Maccabi Games

Ori Hoffer on Preparing for his First Maccabi USA Experience

Half Marathon with Melissa Perlman

Women’s Soccer with Catie Chase

Coaching at the EMG with Scott Garson

Maccabi USA Soccer with Morry Steinbach

Prepping for the European Maccabi Games with Zak Elfenbein

Maccabi Memories with Caroline Post

Maccabi Memories with Dallen Stanford

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Halpern

Maccabi Memories with Charly Santagado

Maccabi Memories with Matthew Monheit

Maccabi Memories with Lenny Krayzelburg

Maccabi Memories with Rachel Magerman

Maccabi Memories with Noah Springwater

Maccabi Memories with Stuart Weitzman

 

Like Maccabi USA on Facebook and follow Maccabi USA on Twitter and Instagram!!