Leadership

Staff


Danny Cohn

Danny Cohn

CEO of Birmingham Jewish Federation

Danny Cohn was born and raised in Omaha, Nebraska. He received a B.S. in Journalism at The University of Kansas, and a master’s degree in Public Administration at The Ohio State University. Danny has almost two decades of experience as a strategic leader in marketing, operations, fundraising, branding, public relations, and social media for integrated marketing agencies and national foundations. He led integrated marketing teams at Edelman and Zeno Group, both in Chicago. From 2015 to 2020, Danny was the Director of Marketing and Communications for the Arbor Day Foundation in Omaha. Over the last two decades, prior to his arrival in Birmingham, Danny had been an active lay leader in many Jewish Philanthropic Institutions. Danny arrived in Birmingham in March of 2020. Since moving to Birmingham, Danny has impacted the Birmingham Jewish through strategic planning, the reestablishing of the Jewish Community Relations Council as well as Sister City P2G programming, and the launch of a new Jewish Young Leadership Program. You can contact Danny about anything and everything related to The Birmingham Jewish Federation and the Jewish Community of Birmingham. 

Jeff Brown

Jeff Brown

Regional Security Advisor

Mr. Brown has been employed by the Secure Community Network since April 2022 and has significant experience in all aspects of global terrorism threats, risks, and physical security considerations. Mr. Brown previously served in the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) from 2001-2022. During his FBI career, Mr. Brown conducted and supervised criminal and counterterrorism investigations, and ultimately served as a Senior Leader as Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Birmingham Division and Unit Chief of the Counterterrorism Division at FBI Headquarters. Mr. Brown also served in leadership roles during numerous high-profile special events during his career, including the 2013 Boston Marathon Bombing, 2014 Winter Sochi Olympics, 2018 Senior PGA Championship and the 2022 World Games. Additionally, Mr. Brown served in numerous overseas leadership assignments in high-risk areas, to include Balad, Iraq, Baghdad, Iraq, Afghanistan and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Prior to his employment with the FBI, Mr. Brown served as a Police Officer and Detective for 10 years.

Claire Diamond

Claire Diamond

Accounts Payable/Receivable Manager

Coming all the way from Durban, South Africa, Claire moved to the United States in 2002. Prior to moving to Birmingham in 2018, Claire and her family lived in Indianapolis where she worked in Jewish preschools. Claire received a Master’s in Historical Archaeology with a minor in Environmental and Geographical Science from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. She has been working at the BJF since 2021. Contact Claire if you are looking to donate, need information on pledge balances/past donations that have been made, or copies of tax receipts/ acknowledgment receipts. Claire’s favorite thing about working at The Birmingham Jewish Federation is the people she works with.  

Susan Greene

Susan Greene

Campaign and Special Projects Manager

Susan is a Birmingham native.  She received a Bachelor’s Degree and a Master’s Degree in Social Work from The University of Georgia.  She worked in Atlanta as Assistant Director of Hillel for colleges in and around Atlanta.  She returned to Birmingham in 1983 and became an avid volunteer for the Birmingham Jewish Community.  Susan has served as the President of the Birmingham Jewish Federation and N.E. Miles Jewish Day School.   After receiving a master’s degree in Jewish Education from Siegel College of Jewish Studies, Susan worked as the Development Director for the N.E. Miles Jewish Day School where she ran the Annual Campaign and raised money for their endowment. She also served as Executive Director of the Norma Livingston Ovarian Cancer Foundation for 6 years.  Susan joined the BJF team in 2020 and has developed the curriculum for the Young Leadership Program  and works on Women’s Philanthropy and the Annual Campaign Her favorite part about working here is the people and the mission.  

Emily Leykum

Emily Leykum

Executive Assistant to Danny Cohn

Emily began working for the Federation in February of 2022. Emily is originally from Houston, Texas, and moved to Birmingham in 2013. She got her BBA in Management, with a focus on the Non-Profit Sector, from the University of Montevallo. Emily’s love for the non-profit sector began when she worked at a camp in upstate New York for inner-city youth. This is also where she met her other love, her husband, Michael. Prior to her work at the Birmingham Jewish Federation, she worked as a Client Coordinator at Kid One Transport. Emily loves the variety of ways in which we are involved with the community. She says “There is always something new and exciting on the horizon.”

Florina Newcomb

Florina Newcomb

Senior Director Of Engagement

Florina was born in Kishinev, Moldova. With help from the BJF, CJFS, and other Jewish organizations, she moved to Birmingham with her family when she was just six years old. Florina got her degree in International Studies and Business at Birmingham Southern College.  Prior to joining the BJF team in 2015, she worked at the Shepherd Center in Atlanta. Florina oversees the Annual Campaign, Women’s Philanthropy, PJ Library, young family programming, Shalom Baby Bags, Israel Connections Committee, Partnership 2Gether with Rosh Ha’ayin, and New Orleans, Mission Trips, Israel World Jewry Bureau (IWJB) overseas allocations committee, and our United Way partnership. You can find Florina in our snack pantry eating chocolate-drizzled popcorn. 

 

Kim Patterson

Kim Patterson

Director of Finance and HR

Kim has been with the Birmingham Jewish Federation for over 20 years. Kim grew up in Decatur, Alabama, and right after high school started work for the Department of Defense in Huntsville for 10 years.  Kim pursued an Engineering degree in Huntsville until she met her husband. Kim started at the BJF as the Accounting Administrator and worked her way to the position she holds today. Kim’s favorite thing about the Federation is not only seeing a whole new generation being raised but also seeing them take on leadership roles to strengthen Birmingham’s Jewish Community as well as the broader community.  She considers her co-workers not only colleagues but friends as well.  She looks forward to seeing what the future brings to the Federation and our local Jewish agencies.

Joyce Shevin

Joyce Shevin

Director of Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC)

Joyce was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, and received a bachelor’s degree in Social Work from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree in Secondary Education from UAB. She has been working in the Birmingham nonprofit world for over 20 years. Joyce was the Jewish Community Relations Director for the Birmingham Jewish Federation from 2001 to 2012 and left to become the Executive Director of Magic Moments from 2012- 2016. Joyce served as the Interim Executive Director of the Birmingham Holocaust Education Center until 2018 and was recruited by Danny Cohn to return to her former position in May 2020. As the JCRC Director, Joyce educates and advocates for social justice issues important to our community. The JCRC responds to incidents of antisemitism, advocates for social justice issues, collaborates with the broader community, and communicates with our legislators on issues important to our Jewish community. Joyce loves the energy and passion of our staff, especially everyone’s dedication and full commitment to our overall mission of enriching our Jewish community.

Sarah Weinberger

Sarah Weinberger

Youth Engagement and Young Adult Coordinator

Sarah was born in raised in Marietta, Georgia, but moved to Alabama for college in 2016 (Roll Tide). She received her bachelor’s degree in Advertising and Communication Studies at The University of Alabama. Sarah joined the Birmingham Jewish Federation in July of 2020. Sarah oversees BBYO, Young Jewish Philanthropy, You Belong in Birmingham and can be contacted for all website and marketing needs. Sarah has enjoyed getting to know the Birmingham Jewish community and learning from her coworkers.

2021-2022 Board of Directors


Amy Saag

President

Jack Aland

President Elect

Gary Cutter

Personnel VP

Barbara Aland

Finance VP

David Romanoff

Community Impact VP

Steve Greene

Fundraising VP

Lisa Engel

Past President

Cynthia Tobias

Foundation President

Board Members

Jerry Held
Sheryl Kimerling
Steve Corenblum
Rachel Friedman
Nancy Goedecke
Ginger Held
Jon Kimerling
Savannah Koplon
Randi Landy
Ron Levitt
Daniel Odrezin
Joel Piassick
Richard Pizitz, Jr.
Ben Rosenbaum
Michael Routman
Andy Saag
Sarah Schaeffer
Carlie Stein Somerville
Jesse Unkenholz
Alyssa Blair
Scott Gewant
David Sher