Current Board term ends in November of year indicated in parentheses.
Gerry Tenney, President
(2017) (Oakland) is a musician and teacher, a singer of Yiddish songs, and leader of the band California Klezmer. In 2002, 2004, and 2006 he was Musical Director for two Yiddish-oriented plays produced by the S.F. State Drama and Jewish Studies Departments. He directed the Jewish Music Festival in its early years, and was a main organizer for KlezKamp West, the first klezmer camp in California in 1989. He has led and performed children's music at many klezmer music camps in New York, West Virginia, and California, as well as at other Jewish children's camps. Gerry founded and directed the East Bay Kindershul, which served hundreds of families. He also taught Sociology at the City College of New York from 1967 to 1972.
Laura S. Rosenberg, Chair
(2017) (Oakland), has had a 35-year career in arts administration, during which she co-founded and directed the Hot Springs (Arkansas) Music Festival (where she currently mentors young arts administrators), served as Executive Director of Earplay, Director of Concert Activities for Northwestern University, Director of Production for The Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center, Artistic Advisor and Director of Special Projects for the University Musical Society in Ann Arbor, and Concert Director of San Francisco’s Old First Concerts series. Trained as a choral conductor at Temple University, the Aspen Music Festival, and the Accademia Musicale Chigiana, Ms. Rosenberg was Director of the Hot Springs Music Festival Chorus, Ann Arbor May Festival Chorus, and the Berkeley Chorus Pro Musica. As a klezmer performer, she plays accordion.
Talia Shaham, Vice-President & Vice-Chair
(2017) (Palo Alto) is a scientific programmer at SRI International in Menlo Park. Born in Israel, as a child she moved to the U.S. to Palo Alto, where she still lives. She is the mother of four grown daughters, all of whom had Hebrew day school educations and bat mitzvahs at Congregation Kol Emeth, where she is still a member. Talia has played the violin since childhood, but after attending KlezKamp in New York became intoxicated with klezmer music. She plays in a local orchestra, is an avid Israeli folk dancer, and is a fluent Hebrew speaker.
Judy Kunofsky, Executive Director, Treasurer & Secretary
(2017) (Berkeley), has worked with non-profits since 1974. Prior to her current work as a fundraising consultant and trainer (through her business JMJ Consulting), she was a senior staff member for the Sierra Club, Greenbelt Alliance, and Yosemite Restoration Trust, with responsibilities for citizen organizing, public education, policy analysis, and advocacy. Judy reads Yiddish literature, and plays viola in a string quartet. She has planned many events, including an international, 500-participant open space conference, as well as KlezCalifornia’s Yiddish Culture Festivals. Judy has a Ph.D. in mathematics from U.C.L.A., and has received leadership awards from six organizations. She lives in Berkeley, attends Congregation Netivot Shalom, and participates in several khavurot.
(2018) (Berkeley) born in Washington D.C., grew up in the Bay Area and graduated with a degree in architecture from U.C. Berkeley. A licensed architect, he is a currently a principal at Interactive Resources, responsible for project management of the firm’s federal and local government projects from design, budgeting and planning phases through completed construction. Outside activities include learning both klezmer violin and Yiddish. He lives in Berkeley with Claire Sherman, artist and teacher of Judaica crafts, and their two artistically talented daughters. He is a long-time member of Congregation Netivot Shalom.
(2017) (Oakland), is
a musician, audio engineer, and event producer. Peter graduated in 2008 from Hampshire College,
concentrating in contemporary music with saxophonist Marty Ehrlich, and
studying klezmer with Adrianne Greenbaum at Mount Holyoke College and
Hankus Netsky at the Yiddish Book Center. Upon relocating to the East
Bay in 2010, Peter worked with the Jewish Music Festival,
serving as Assistant Director and Technical Coordinator for the
production of over thirty concerts and cultural events in Berkeley and
throughout the Bay Area. Peter also is employed by the JCC of the East Bay, providing operational
support for a variety of community activities and events. Bonos performs on trumpet and euphonium in a variety of musical styles, including
klezmer, Balkan brass, jazz, and avant garde music, as an active
member of Balkan brass band Fanfare Zambaleta, and a founder of Orchestra Euphonos, an instrumental klezmer ensemble.
(2018) (Berkeley), is a musician who plays chromatic button accordion, cimbalom, and piano. He received his Masters degree in Composition and Music Theory from the Academy of Music in Graz, Austria, where he taught Music Theory and served as Research Fellow and Director of the Klezmer Music Research Project for eight years. He is the founder and director of the ensemble Budowitz, a founding member of Veretski Pass and has performed and recorded with Itzhak Perlman, The Vienna Chamber Orchestra, Theodore Bikel, Rubin & Horowitz, Brave Old World, Alicia Svigals, Adrienne Cooper and Ruth Yaakov. His music was featured in films including “Some of my best friends are... Jewish / Muslim,” and "The Holocaust Tourist." Joshua taught Advanced Jazz Theory at Stanford University with the late saxophonist Stan Getz, and is a regular teacher at KlezKamp, Klezkanada, KlezCalifornia and the Klezmer Festival Fürth. His musicological work is featured in four books, including The Sephardic Songbook with Aron Saltiel and The Ultimate Klezmer, and he has written numerous articles on the counterpoint of J.S. Bach. He is the recipient of more than 40 awards, including the Prize of Honor presented by the Austrian government for his orchestral composition Tenebrae.
(2017) (Oakland) Rosie was born in Germany to Polish Holocaust survivor parents and spoke Yiddish until her family came to America when she was three years old. She a B.A. in Elementary Ed from Indiana University and holds a Lifetime K-12 Teaching Credential in California. Rosie first came to California to teach elementary school. When she moved to Israel, she taught English to Adults while she was learning Hebrew. When she returned to the San Francisco Bay Area, she again taught children, this time in religious schools. She has continued to be involved with Yiddish culture and language through singing with the Jewish Folk Chorus, Nigunim Chorus, and the chorus for the New Yiddish Theater’s Bay Area production in 2015 of Di Megileh. She has worked for several non-profit organizations in various capacities including seven years at the (national) Sierra Club as Volunteer Coordinator. She co-chairs KlezCalifornia’s Flisik Salon for fluent Yiddish speakers which gathers every month for casual conversations. Currently she is a teacher of English as a second language.
(2017) (Berkeley) is a native San Franciscan of New York descent, and a graduate of Harvard College and Stanford Law School. He is KlezCalifornia's webmaster and legal advisor. He has been on the steering committees of the JCC East Bay's Jewish Music Festival, and the San Francisco Festival of the Mandolins. As a musician, he performed and recorded with klezmer band Red Hot Chachkas, founded and led the Instant Klezmer Mandolin Orchestra, leads a monthly oldtime fiddle tune jam at the Freight & Salvage, and plays a variety of styles on mandolin, fiddle, and guitar. As a child, he heard his zayde and bubbe speaking Yiddish to avoid being understood, but still has no idea what they might have been saying.
(2018) (San Mateo), born in Haifa, Israel, came to the U.S. at the age of five. Yiddish was spoken in the household, especially when his parents wanted to include him and leave out his younger brother. His career has been in the insurance industry, on the company side as well as an agent and broker. He currently does risk management consulting and insurance educational training. An avid dancer, he began first with Israeli dancing. For more than twenty years, he has produced Balkan, Greek, and Klezmer music and dance events in the Bay area.
(2018) (Berkeley) has been a producer of public festivals and events for more than twenty-five years. She produced the 20th Anniversary Earth Day Celebration and Ceremonies in Times Square (1990, New York City), and subsequent festivals in Battery Park (1991, NYC) and Bryant Park (1992, NYC). Laura was Production Manager for the First Annual Buskers' Fair at the World Trade Center (1993) and ten other locations in Lower Manhattan. She was Producer of the Jewish Food Festival (1997, 1998, JCC of the East Bay), and Jewish Music Festival (1998, 1999). She is currently Director of Events at the Mechanics' Institute, San Francisco, where she presents author programs, lectures, and a film series. She is a professionally-trained actress and dancer, and performs in the Bay Area.