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Meet Our Staff

Our staff family is here to support students on any step of their Jewish journeys. Find out more about each of us, our contact info, some of the ways we can specifically help, as well as our pronouns below.

  • Jacqueline Ulin Levey

    Executive Director & CEO
    Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

    Originally from Buffalo, NY (go Bills!), Jackie moved to St. Louis to attend Washington University. During college, she interned at Hillel, co-founded a group called “Black Women/Jewish Women” and was President of Student Union, WashU’s student government. Jackie loved St. Louis and WashU, and after a fellowship and political campaign work in Washington, DC, she returned to WashU for law school. After 8 years practicing law in St. Louis, it was time to return to the campus that she loves and help foster one of the most vibrant campus Jewish communities in the country. She still can’t believe she’s been given this opportunity to work with such amazing students each day, helping to cultivate the next generation of Jewish leaders during one of the most important times in our history. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, photography, and spending time with her husband Jim, son Asher (age 8), her daughter Maddie (born May 2016), and their rescue dog, Barley.

  • Rabbi Jordan Gerson
    Rabbi Jordan Gerson

    Silk Foundation Campus Rabbi
    Pronouns: He/Him/His

    Rabbi Jordan Gerson, known by his students as RJ, is currently working in his dream job as WashU Hillel's Campus Rabbi. After growing up here in St. Louis, RJ earned his BA from Binghamton University in Jewish Studies with a focus in Jewish History. In 2005 he moved to Los Angeles where he attended The Ziegler School of Rabbinic studies. Ordained in 2011, Rabbi Jordan simultaneously earned his MA in Rabbinic Literature from the American Jewish University. Today, RJ loves being back in St. Louis with his wife, Becky, and their three daughters, Daliya, Ashira, and Nessa, and their new son, Ishai. RJ loves introducing students to the rich compendium of knowledge that Judaism has to offer in new and innovative ways and through a modern lens. He believes torah can be found wherever we look, it is simply a matter of uncovering it. When he’s not in the office, Rabbi Jordan loves spending time with his family, cooking healthful and creative dishes, reading, and watching movies.

  • Tony J. Westbrook, Jr.
    Tony J. Westbrook, Jr.

    Assistant Director
    Pronouns: He/Him/His

    Tony J. Westbrook, Jr. is a Jewish African-American, activist, and community leader originally from St. Louis. When he's not working to build community on campus, he's working to address issues of racial inequality, discrimination, diversity, and inclusion throughout the St. Louis community. He received his B.A. in Communication from Fontbonne University. He made aliyah to Israel in 2016, and studied at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies from 2016-2019, earning Certificates in Jewish Studies and in Jewish Experiential Education. His personal and professional mission in life is to help Jews of all ages and affiliations to make new, meaningful, and sustainable connections to their Judaism. When he’s not working, you can find him singing or in the kitchen making delicious kosher treats or on TikTok making fun videos.

  • Missy Novotny
    Missy Novotny

    Pronouns: She/her/hers

    Missy was born and raised in St. Louis. She graduated in 2001 from the University of Missouri St. Louis with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in English. Completely unrelated to the degree, she spent many years in the Printing Industry as a Quality, Safety and Environmental Manager before leaving her full-time career behind in favor of more time with her family. Married to Lee since 2007, they have two gorgeous, smart, sassy daughters, Ellie (2009) and Grace (2012). They also have 2 rescue cats, 1 rescue dog, an aquarium, 2 mice (yes, mice), and 15 chickens (yes, chickens!) At Hillel, Missy handles all things building related, creates the newsletter and maintains the website, and handles logistics for programs and events. In her free time she loves reading, hiking, and adventuring with her family.

  • Avery Lyla Friedman
    Avery Lyla Friedman

    Program & Engagement Associate
    Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

    Avery Lyla Friedman is a proud Marylander who graduated from Christopher Newport University in Virginia in 2015 with a degree in psychology and a minor in business administration. While there she was heavily involved at her local JCC, where she organized kids’ programs and taught both Hebrew school and preschool. After finishing school she spent a year in Netanya teaching English with Masa Israel Teaching Fellows. She fell hopelessly in love with Israel, made aliyah and spent the next several years working at a high-tech start-up in Tel Aviv and earning a master’s degree in Jewish Education from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She returned to the states to work with Jewish young adults, and is excited to bring her love of Israel and passion for informal and experiential Jewish education to WashU! In her free time, Avery loves browsing used bookstores, hiking, and trying out new gluten-free recipes.

  • Allison Frieze
    Allison Frieze

    IACT Coordinator for Israel Engagement
    Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

    Born and raised in St. Louis, Allison Frieze is excited to be in her hometown with the WashU Hillel team. Before her time at WashU, she received her Master’s degree from Missouri State University in Global Studies with a focus in National Security. During her time in school, Allison studied abroad in Spain as well as participated in a Birthright Israel trip. Her passion for both travel and Israel has led her to her new position as an IACT Coordinator for WashU Hillel. She is excited to share her love for Israel with the students at WashU and help them experience everything this amazing country has to offer! Some of her favorite memories from her time in Israel were seeing the sunrise on the back of a camel, visiting the Western Wall, hiking Mount Arbel, and floating in the Dead Sea. When Allison isn’t traveling to Israel, she is either watching her favorite hockey team (Go Blues), eating an enormous amount of French fries, hiking with her dog Rory, or now wedding planning!

  • Jessica Partridge
    Jessica Partridge

    Springboard Social Justice Fellow
    Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

    Jessica Partridge grew up in Ohio, spending her formative years in Columbus before attending Ohio University. She earned her degree in English: Cultures, Rhetoric and Theory, and received certificates in Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies and Diversity Studies as an aim to ground her passion for social justice through academic exploration. Jessica’s Jewish journey merges with such passion through her devotion to the concept of Tikkun Olam, or repairing the world, as she was an active participant at her Alma Mater’s Hillel. She led various activities centered around Jewish womanhood and feminism, served as an engagement intern, a student voice on the board of directors and Hillel student president. Birthright was a profound steppingstone as an undergrad, as Israel not only left a special imprint on her heart but ignited a yearning within her to once again return. While her internship position with the Women’s Zionist Organization in Tel Aviv could not be carried out due to Covid 19, she knows in her heart she will be back soon. Jessica also has a deep love and appreciation for writing, and worked as an intern for the New Ohio Review in the spring of 2021, feverishly editing, composing and sifting through piles of submitted work. During her free time, she enjoys exploring bookstores and coffee shops alike, always in search of the best book and brew of the moment. Jessica looks forward to meeting WashU students and guiding them to pursue their own passions and dreams.

  • Jamie Avalos
    Jamie Avalos

    Development and Communications Manager
    Pronouns: She/Her/Hers

    Jamie was born and raised in St. Louis. She graduated in 2018 from Saint Louis University with a bachelor’s in Organizational Studies and minor in Project Management. She was just accepted into the fall 2021 graduate program at UMSL to receive her MBA. She has been in development for nearly 14 years and has spent all but 1 of those years serving the Jewish community. Jamie is also an advocate for youth at risk and is a part of a small committee who runs the Best Kids in America Scholarship program at Ritenour High School in St. Louis County. She is married to Jeff, who works at Alberici Construction. They have a beautiful daughter named Mila Sue (born 2018) who has such a bubbly personality and is a mermaid at heart! They also have 2 Golden Doodles, Auggie and Linus along with 4 fish. In her free time, Jamie loves to go camping with her family, traveling, fishing, concerts, cooking, and is obsessed with coffee!