Dvir has been a member of the Temple Kol Ami Emanu-El family since 2005.
A native Israeli, Dvir grew up in Holon. His knowledge of security measures began as a member of a special intelligence unit of the Israel Defense Force. Upon leaving the IDF, Dvir studied electrical engineering and completed his education in the United States, receiving his degree from the University of Miami, College of Engineering. His first position in the U.S. was with a local security firm in a special Israeli unit specializing in the safety and security of Jewish institutions, synagogues and schools.
Dvir came to TKAE as the director of security, but quickly added on to his responsibilities. He works very closely with local police, FBI and Homeland Security, and serves as a consultant in helping non-profit businesses develop security measures on their own campuses. Together with local law enforcement agencies and the Jewish Federation of Broward County, Dvir established the Secure Zone Program throughout the tri-county area. This program established a communications system portal within the Jewish community, whereby representatives of organizations have the ability to immediately share information regarding security issues pertinent to the Jewish community. He also was instrumental in securing a grant that allowed TKAE's impressive security features to be put in place - allowing for cameras, complete fencing, guard house, gates and card access to be implemented throughout our campus.
It was in large part due to Dvir's vision and commitment to strategic planning that the Imagine Charter School opened their doors on our campus in 2012. He also acted as project manager for our state-of-the-art Early Childhood building through which he was able to watch all three of his children pass.
Dvir is a member of FASTA (Florida Association of Synagogue and Temple Administrators) and NATA (National Association of Temple Administrators). In his free time you can usually find him experimenting with some sort of extreme sport or relaxing with his family - wife Sharon and children Inbar, Ofir and Ariel.
E-mail Dvir Weiss
Valeria grew up in Cordoba, Argentina, and knew from an early age that she wanted to study Jewish education. Fluent in Spanish, English, and Hebrew, Valeria studied at the Shaii Agnon Institute in Argentina, and at the Seminar Ha Kibutzim, in Israel. She has a bachelor’s degree in education, and an executive master's degree in Jewish education from Hebrew the Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR). Prior to moving to the United States, Valeria was an early childhood teacher in Israel and in Argentina for 20 years. Her areas of expertise are in early childhood education, in teaching, and administration. When she moved to Miami, Florida, she continued her journey as a preschool educator. In 2009 she became the director of the Early Childhood Center and Religious School of Temple Israel of Greater Miami.
Her love and passion for young children inspired her to develop and implement creative curricula inspired by Reggio Emilia philosophy. As a religious school director she has written an innovative curriculum inspired in the project-based learning approach, utilizing UBD Design (Understanding by Design). She developed and facilitated a variety of hands-on family education programs like Passover at the Beach, Sukkot at the Farm, “ Who Wants to be a Mitzvahnaire, The Family Jewperdi, Mitzvah Day, and more. She works as an educator and tutor at URJ Camp Coleman during the summer. Valeria has been designing and implementing teachers’ professional developments for early childhood educators and religious school instructors. She is an active member of CAJE Broward and the ELC (Early Learning Coalition) of Broward.
As a lifelong Jewish learner and professional Jewish educator, Valeria has instilled her love and knowledge of Judaism and Eretz Yisrael in the children and families of the communities she has served. Her warmth, compassion, and creativity are undeniable, as is her commitment to Jewish education. She started as Temple Solel’s religious school director in June 2012 and joined Temple Kol Ami Emanu-El in July 2016.
Her overall core values view Jewish education as the vital and crucial link to connecting families and congregation. She is excited to share her vision of a solid Jewish education, inspiring children, families, and teachers in strengthening their Jewish identity. Her passion is working with children of all ages, inculcating in them in a love for Judaism and a love for learning.
Outside of professional interests, she travels widely, reads, writes, and enjoys living in Miami with her husband Yosi, a travel expert, and their three children.
E-mail Valeria Michanie
Stacey Katz has been working in the Early Childhood Program since 1997. Stacey has a B.A. in Management with a minor in Child Psychology, a B.S. in Nursing and a Master's Degree in Administration. Stacey has been an active member of the ECE-RJ the (Early Childhood Educators of the Reform Judaism) for the past 10 years and has served on the board for two years. She is an active board member of JECP (Jewish Early Childhood Professionals) and member of NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children). She also holds her VPK endorsed director credential and continues to keeps her registered nursing license up to date.
Serving as the director of TKAE’s Early Childhood Program brings Stacey such joy because she and her staff are able to make a difference in the lives of young children. She feels fortunate to work with amazing teachers and administrators that treat each and every family that enters the school as one of their own. The goal for her students is to set the foundation for lifelong learning and for their families to feel that they are leaving their children in a nurturing and safe environment.
Born in New York, Stacey moved to Plantation from Miami Beach in the 1990s with her husband Louis. They have three children, Hannah, Stephanie and Noah.
E-mail Stacey Katz
Josh Simon joined Kol Ami-Emanuel in 2013 after living for 19 years living in Peoria, Illinois. A native of Denver, Colorado, Josh attended Bradley University and stayed in Peoria after graduation to work at WEEK-TV. Josh has been a sports reporter, photographer, producer and anchor. He's had the opportunity to cover three World Series, an MLB All-Star Game, the NCAA Final Four, Sweet 16, NBA Draft and a Super Bowl. While working at the television station, he also served as the youth program director at Congregation Anshai Emeth for 17 years.
Josh enjoys working every day and evenings with the congregation's youth, organizing and fostering leaders, and planning future events and programs that engage and energize the congregation's youth and adults in memorable community experiences.