Allie Zeff assumed the role of DJJ’s Executive Director in early 2022 after three years in the role of Organizer for Campaigns and Education. She started her career in Detroit in 2014 as a Music Teacher. Her transition into community organizing was catalyzed by the local and regional political climate, especially in the ways it affects Detroit’s education system. Allie served as a volunteer leader with Detroit Jews for Justice for 4 years, serving in multiple roles including chair of the Grassroots Fundraising Committee, Steering Committee Member, chair of several cultural events, including Festival of Rights and Purim, and contributing artist for several campaigns. Allie established both a political and spiritual home in the Detroit Jews for Justice community. The shift from volunteer role to staff was a natural progression and a testament to the organization’s commitment to creating organizers and leaders out of their members. As Executive Director, Allie is committed to stewarding DJJ’s growth into a new era of work. She is passionate about cementing DJJ as a major player in the Detroit organizing community that is truly progressive, trustworthy, and effective.
Susannah joined the DJJ staff as Deputy Director in November 2019. As a founding member and former Steering Committee member, DJJ is the most meaningful way Susannah expresses her Jewish identity. Susannah grew up in Congregation T'chiyah and is now a member of both T'chiyah and the Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue. She has been involved in interfaith community organizing all her life, including participation in the Detroit Interfaith Outreach Network (DION), the Riverfront East Congregational Initiative (a program of the Michigan Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion), and the Cranbrook Peace Foundation's Youth Leadership Project. After 8 years as an arts administrator for Detroit-based arts nonprofits, Susannah brings creative and intuitive skills to DJJ, along with strong administrative organization. Susannah oversees HR, Finance and Organizational Development initiatives.
Organizer for Campaigns and Education
Dr Elijah Silver joined DJJ’s team in 2022 in the role of Organizer for Campaigns and Education. Elijah was heavily involved in social justice work through their youth and early adulthood, then became an educator in 2006.In 2010 Elijah attended National University of Naturopathic Medicine in Portland, OR, graduating with a doctorate of naturopathic medicine in 2014. While in medical school, Elijah worked with clinic staff and faculty to implement major improvements in transgender medicine and cultural humility within the organization. After graduating, in addition to running a small private practice, Elijah worked as an LGBTQ healthcare competency educator for Affirmations LGBTQ+ Community Center and as a gender-affirming therapy counselor for Transcend the Binary. A dedicated member of their local Reconstructionist synagogue, Elijah is thrilled to have an opportunity to contribute to Jewish social justice work in the SE Michigan area.
Programs Associate for Racial Equity
Kendra joined the Detroit Jews for Justice team in July 2020 as our Programs Associate for Racial Equity. Prior to becoming a staff member, Kendra served as a DJJ intern. Originally from Pontiac, they wandered down to North Carolina to study Jewish Studies and Sociology at UNC Chapel Hill. While living in North Carolina, Kendra was an active leader in our sister organization, Carolina Jews for Justice. Deeply committed to building community and power among Jews of Color, Kendra is excited to develop this role in partnership with Edot HaMidwest: The Midwest Jewish Regional Diversity Collaborative. In addition to supporting the ongoing campaign work of our amazing DJJ leaders and partner organizations, Kendra will be focusing their efforts on strengthening connections between Jews of Color in Metro-Detroit and across the Midwest, and working with our partner synagogues. Kendra is always down to connect over Southern Jewry, liberatory Torah, and exchanging soup recipes!
Kendra's position is supported by the Jews of Color Initiative.