The Howie Stillman Young Leadership Award was established to recognized the leadership and personal qualities of a high school senior who is active in a Twin Cities' synagogue youth group or BBYO. Nominees are selected on a number of criteria including youth group involvement; engagement in educational, community, and school-related activities; leadership qualities, and personal qualities of warmth and concern for others. The Howie Stillman Young Leadership Award is an attempt to honor a high school senior who demonstrates these qualities in the spirit of someone who embraced them so well.


Shira Aronow2021 Shira Aronow
Shira created Planet Empower, a digital magazine to empower youth, support families, and instill a love for community service. She served as the Chair and was a founder of the Crisis Nursery Youth Advisory Board for the Greater Minneapolis Crisis Nursery. She served as Chair of the Community Service Board Leadership Committee, was a founding member of the school?s Student Diversity Leadership Council, played on the Ultimate Frisbee team, and served as a Student Director of Admissions Ambassadors.

Eliana Pierotti2020 Eliana Pierotti
Eliana Pierotti served as President of Shir Tikvah's youth group, Co-Captain of Washburn's Varsity Tennis Team, Co-President of Washburn's Jewish Student Union, and was a Co-Founder and Co-President of the Civically Engaged Teens Club at her high school. She said she created the group hoping to get more students involved in community action. The group helped get more than 40 seniors registered to vote.

Yonah Davis2019 Yonah Davis
A graduate of St. Louis Park High School in 2019, Yonah was an editor on the high school newspaper, the Echo, served as the president of DECA and founded a social action club called Achieving Change Together which offered students local volunteering opportunities and school-wide initiatives. Outside of school, Yonah ran a technology consulting company for senior citizens called TeKnowledge and served on a St. Louis Park city council advisory commission. As the president of Beth El Synagogue USY, Yonah led the chapter through a year of transition and helped improve attendance and programming. After a gap year in Israel on Nativ, Yonah plans to continue his education at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Max Gantman2018 Max Gantman
A graduate of Henry Sibley Senior High, Max was actively involved with Temple of Aaron USY, serving on the executive board his senior year. Max was the captain of Henry Sibley's football and baseball teams, served as the vice president of Business Professionals of America, was a member of the National Honor Society and Student Council. In the community, Max was actively involved with Special Olympics Minnesota, volunteered at a local elementary school over the summer, and tutored middle school students in math. Max is currently a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin- Madison, Howie's alma matter, where he is studying Finance, Economics and Computer Sciences.

Lily Gray2017 Lily Gray
Lily Gray graduated from Wayzata High School in 2017, where she was a part of the National Honors Society and a Link Crew leader. In the Jewish community, she was very involved in USY, as Adath's Vice President and also tutored the seventh grade class at Adath's SMP. Currently, she is a junior at the University of Wisconsin-Madison studying Journalism and Political Science, with a certificate in Jewish Studies. On campus, she is the Editor-in-Chief of the undergraduate journal of Jewish Studies, Avukah and is the immediate past president of her sorority, Sigma Delta Tau. She also loves UW-Madison's Humorology and is the incoming Executive Dance Director for the organization.

Sam Gittleman2016 Sam Gittleman
A graduate of The Blake School, Sam edited Blake's student newspaper, captained its ultimate frisbee and football teams, was actively involved in Beth El USY, and spent summers at his beloved Herzl Camp. He's currently a senior studying Philosophy-Neuroscience-Psychology at Washington University in St. Louis, where he captains the ultimate frisbee team and volunteers as a third grade environmental science teacher. He plans on moving to Washington, D.C. to work as a Product Manager at Capital One upon graduating.

Brit Stein2015 Brit Stein
Hopkins High School class of 2015, Brit was a Scholar Athlete, News Editor of the Royal Page, co-president and international competitor for DECA and the founder/president of Minnesota Nice, a school club dedicated to local and global service projects. She tutored in religious studies at Adath SMP and served as the Israeli Affairs VP for Adath USY. Currently, Brit is a Business Administration student at the Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California. She is a Trustee Scholar of the university, Vice President of Operations for Tamid Group, a nonprofit organization that develops the professional skills through consulting for Israeli start-ups, and the Internal Finance Officer of her sorority, Kappa Alpha Theta.

2014 Adam Tarshish
Before graduating from Hopkins High School, Adam had held several positions on the USY board and was an intern at the Minneapolis JFCS Big Brother Big Sister program. He was also the Captain of both the Swim team and Track and Field team; specializing in the 500 yard event and the pole vault. Additionally, Adam was a member of the National Honor Society and Captains Council throughout high school. He is currently a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he is exploring different areas of academia.

2013 Annie Blumfield
A graduate of Central High School, Annie was active in Beth Jacob USY. She also attended the Talmud Torah of St. Paul Midrasha program after graduating from the Talmud Torah day school. In high school she was active in working in special education, as well as dance. She's currently a pre-medical student at Wellesley College, focusing on studying Biology and Education.

2012 Ben Usem
A graduate from Armstrong High School and the Talmud Torah of Minneapolis Beit Midrash Program, Ben was actively involved with Adath USY as well as Emtza Region USY, where he served as Regional President his senior year. He was also involved in his high school student council and National Honor Society. Ben is currently a freshman in the Wisconsin School of Business at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Howie's alma-mater, where he is studying Finance and Risk Management.

2011 Sidney Usem
Sidney was very active in Beth Jacob USY, the Emtza Region USY President, and a graduate of Henry Sibley High School. He was also the captain of his high school Ultimate Frisbee team. He spent his first year after high school in Israel on the USY Nativ program studying at the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem and volunteering in a town called Yerucham in southern Israel. Sidney will spend the next year at the University of Minnesota studying sociology and computer sciences. After that he hopes to go into a career in law enforcement.

2010 Nate Gotlieb
A graduate of Hopkins High School, Nate was involved in Adath USY. He was also involved with his high school newspaper, golf team, comedy club, and band program. Nate is a freshman in the College of Biological Sciences at the University of Minnesota and is an avid Gopher sports fan. He is a sports reporter for the Minnesota Daily.

2009 Josh Lieberthal
A graduate of Armstrong High School, Josh was a very active participant in Beth El Rishon USY, where he served as President his junior and senior years. Josh was also the captain of his Ultimate Frisbee team at school. He is currently a student at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and like Howie, hopes to study Journalism.

2008 Brian Shragg
A graduate of Hopkins High School, Brian was actively involved in Beth El USY. He was also involved with the music program at his high school. He currently attends the University of Minnesota where he is a pre-dental student majoring in psychology. He continues with his passion for music by participating in the University of Minnesota Marching Band.

2007 Adam Schraber
A graduate of Eagan High School, Adam was very active in Temple of Aaron USY where he served as President during his senior year. He was also a member of the wind ensemble playing trumpet and on the varsity swim team. Adam was on the St. Paul JCC Youth Committee, a very active participant in St. Paul JCC Basketball , and served as the teen representative on the Board of Directors at the St. Paul JCC. He now attends the University of Wisconsin-Madison double majoring in nutritional sciences and history. He aspires to become a dentist.

2006 Charley Smith
A graduate of Henry Sibley High School in Mendota Heights, Charlie was very active in Beth Jacob USY. He was also active in drama, choir, and Ultimate Frisbee. Charley spent the fall semester of his junior year in high school as an exchange student in Israel. He’s now attending the University of Wisconsin-Madison considering a major in Jewish Studies and would like to become a professor.

2005 Marissa Shragg
A graduate of Hopkins High School, Marissa was extremely involved in Beth El USY. Marissa is currently attending the University of Minnesota as a pre-dental student.

2004 Brad Ingber
An active member of Beth El USY, Brad graduated from Armstrong High School. He is currently attending The University of Kansas School of Business in Marketing.

2003 Hy Matz
A student of Eagan High School, Hy Matz became the first Beth Jacob USY'er to receive the Howie Stillman Young Leadership Award. Hy's leadership roles included a term as Emtza Region USY President, Eagan High School Student Government, Leadership Council, National Honor Society, and serving on the Israeli Advocacy Committee.

2002 Phillip Sherman
A graduate of Armstrong High school, Phillip served as President of Adath USY and like Howie served as a USY Regional President. Phillip is attending Indiana University majoring in Jewish Studies with minors in Hebrew, History, and psychology.

2001 Michael Schachtman
Graduated from Hopkins High School and was an active member of Adath USY. Michael earned his degree in Political Science and Environmental Policy from George Washington University in Washington, DC. He is currently working at
Discovery Creek Children's Museum in Washington.

2000 Samantha Gordon
A graduate of Hopkins High School, Sam was active in Adath Jeshurun's USY Chapter. Like Howie, Sam went on to the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she graduated with a degree in Psychology. Sam lives in Minneapolis where she works as the Assistant Director of Camp Olami and runs the after-school program at the
Sabes Jewish Community Center.

1999 Jeremy Frank
Jeremy attended Hopkins High School during which time he was an active member of Beth El USY serving as President, Programming Vice President, and Communications Secretary. After graduating from Hopkins in 1999 Jeremy went on to attend Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration. Since graduating from Cornell in 2003, Jeremy lived in New York City for two years. During Jeremy’s time in New York he worked in two positions as Assistant Hotel Manager and Hospitality Manager. Jeremy recently relocated back to the Minneapolis area and is working for Target Corporation.

1998 Josh Meyer: Bio information not available at this time.

1997 Micah Peltz
A graduate of Armstrong High School, Micah was involved in Adath USY and President of Emtza Region USY. Micah went on to graduate from the University of Michigan and is currently a rabbinical student at the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS). Micah is also working on a Masters in Jewish Education at the Davidson School at JTS. Micah and his wife Rachel met at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin and currently live in New York.

1996 Jenna (Gordon) Budda
A graduate of Hopkins High School, Jenna was on the board of Adath's USY. Jenna graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison where she majored in Elementary Education with a minor in English. While attending Madison she met her husband Jeremy Budda, who happened to live in the same apartment where Howie once lived. Jenna and Jeremy now live in Chicago and she works at the Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School.

1995 Neil Fink
Neil was an active member of Temple of Aaron USY throughout his high school years and was also a camper and staff member at Herzl Camp. He attended Henry Sibley High School, and then went on to the University of Michigan. Neil worked in consulting in Chicago, IL for three years and then obtained his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management. Neil and his wife Nancy, who is originally from Milwaukee, WI, currently reside in St. Louis Park. Neil is the third generation working in his family business, the Ernest I. Fink Agency, an independent insurance agency, and he is a member of The Howie Stillman Young Leadership Committee.

1994 Lindsey (Gordon) Rose
Lindsey is a Senior Counselor with
Carmichael Lynch Spong, a public relations firm based in Minneapolis. Prior to making her way back to the Twin Cities in 2003, Rose worked for Weber Shandwick Worldwide in Washington, D.C. for more than three years as a Senior Account Executive where she represented accounts including the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, Paramount Pictures, the United States Golf Association and Minute Maid. Rose is a graduate of the William Allen White School of Journalism at the University of Kansas, where she received her B.S. in Journalism with an emphasis in business communications. She graduated from Hopkins High School and served as co-President of Adath's Chapter of USY. She is currently a member of the Public Relations Society of America has served on the Minnesota PRSA Classics Awards committee as well as the Howie Stillman Young Leadership Fund committee. She resides in St. Louis Park with her husband Jason, their two children and dog, Gatsby.

1993 Ben Rubin
A graduate of Armstrong High School, Ben was the President of Adath Jeshurun's USY Chapter. He went on to college at Washington University in St. Louis where he studied English Literature and minored in Business and Political Science. Ben worked as a Paramedic for a year and then worked in an emergency room in Chicago for three and a half years. Ben lives in Evanston, Illinois where he works as the Manager of Loan Operations for FIRST Insurance Funding Corporation. Ben is engaged and got married to Jill Strauss in April of 2006.

1992 Beth Shapiro
Beth graduated from St. Louis Park High School and was the President of Beth El Synagogue USY and a longtime camper and staff member at Herzl Camp. Beth earned a Bachelor's Degree from Washington University in St. Louis, and spent time working as a Public Policy Advocate in Washington,DC. She then moved to Chicago, where she earned a Masters Degree in Social Service Administration from the University of Chicago. Beth is a Child, Adolescent, and Family Therapist at Town & Country Pediatrics in Chicago, IL.

1991 Todd Zeff
A graduate of Armstrong High school, Todd served as President of Beth El USY. Like Howie, Todd went on to attend college at the University of Wisconsin - Madison where he earned his degrees in Hebrew and Communications. Todd earned his Masters in Nonprofit Business Management at the University of Judaism. He also attended the Jewish Theological Seminary where he was ordained and earned a Masters in Jewish Studies. Todd works as the Rabbi and Director of Camp
Ramah in the Poconos. He and his wife Aliza live in Philadelphia with their daughter Maya.

1990 Marty Chester
Graduated from St. Paul Academy and served as President of Adath's Chapter of USY as well as President of USY's Emtza Region. After graduating from Brown University, Marty worked as Legislative Assistant to Congressman Martin Olav Sabo and then went on to earn his law degree from the University of Chicago. He served as a Law Clerk for U.S. District Judge John R. Tunheim and currently works as an Associate at
Faegre & Benson. Marty and his wife Haley Schaffer live in the Twin Cities are are expecting their first child in December of 2005.

1989 Betsy (Fiterman) Rosen
Is a graduate of St. Louis Park High School and Past President of Beth El USY. Betsy graduated with a degree in Social Work from UW - Madison and later went on to earn a Master's Degree in Social Work from the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). She worked as a social worker in inner-city Chicago in foster care and adoption. Betsy and her husband have two children, Josh and Alana Pearl and live in Bentonville, Arkansas where. They are founding members of the first Synagogue in Benton County, Congregation Etz Chaim where Betsy works as the Religious School Director for 27 children. When not at the synagogue, in her kitchen or chasing after the kids, Betsy spends time as the President of the Ladies Auxiliary of the Boys and Girls Club of Benton County.

1988 Joel Glaser
A member of Temple of Aaron USY and a student of Highland Park Senior High, Joel became the first St. Paul student to receive the award. Joel was also one of Howie's campers at Herzl Camp. After graduating from Highland, Joel went on to get a Bachelor of Journalism from The University of Missouri. He worked as a television news producer and executive producer before making a transition to broadcast sales. Joel and his daughter Sarah Eleanor live in Eagan, Minnesota and he is the Sales Manager for
WFMP-FM107. Joel is on the Board Of Directors for The United Jewish Fund & Council, Chair of the Tzedakah Kids Program, an active member of The Howie Stillman Young Leadership Committee and is the webmaster of this website.

1987 Jennifer (Solle) Lewin
Jen was the first recipient of the Howie Stillman Young Leadership Award. A graduate of Armstrong High School and active leader of B'nai Emet's Chapter of USY and Emtza Region USY, Jen went on to graduate from American University in Washington, DC with a degree in Elementary Education and a minor in Special Education. She then continued her education at St. Thomas University in St. Paul receiving her Master's Degree in Special Education - Learning Disabilities and Emotional/Behavioral Disorders. Jen taught special education in several public school districts, tutored privately and consulted. Most recently Jen worked as the Executive Director at The Whole Learning School, a private school for children with disabilities. Jen and her husband Jeff have three children; Max, Simon and Devra and own
Blizzard Ski and Snowboard School.