The first mention of a Hillel at the University of Miami is in December 1940 and the first B’nai B’rith Hillel Foundation at UM was started in 1941. Originally located in a storefront on Ponce de Leon Blvd in downtown Coral Gables, the original Hillel Building was built in 1953.
Six decades later, in 2015 a brand new Braman Miller Center for Jewish Student Life opened its doors doubling the footprint of the original building.
“We are incredibly fortunate to have a great team that are committed to supporting UM’s Jewish students and strengthening Jewish engagement in Miami.”
The University of Miami Hillel strives to provide the best possible Jewish education to students and community members, in doing so, it engaged the most talented professionals and lay leaders to serve on the Board of Directors and in professional capacities.
Our commitment to the highest standards of quality did not go unnoticed, and we were honored to receive:
UM Hillel is committed to students at the University of Miami. Everything we do as an organization is aimed at providing meaningful Jewish life to students, and the larger Miami community.
Our vision is to inspire every Jewish student to make an enduring commitment to Jewish life, learning, and Israel.
We are fortunate to have assembled the best team of professionals to serve at UM Hillel. We represent a diverse, highly educated and experienced team, that brings together their expertise and vision to achieve the mission of the University of Miami Hillel.
Igor Khokhlov is the award-winning Hillel Director, known for his entrepreneurial approach to organizational and leadership development. Igor received two Master degrees at Hebrew Union College. For close to a decade, Igor has worked for the Hillel movement, and was involved as a volunteer in Russia and Israel. Prior to joining the University of Miami Hillel in 2015, Igor worked at Cornell and Ithaca College Hillels. He is a Wexner Fellow, and a member of the Schusterman ROI community. Igor resides in Miami, with his wife Olga, and two children.
Originally from Cordoba, Argentina, Karem moved to Miami in 2013 and joined the Hillel team. She has a background in Jewish youth movements in Argentina and she is a certified accountant. In addition to Karem’s financial oversight, she also advises UM Hillel’s student group for Latin Americans called “Hola Hillel”.
Rabbi Lyle comes to Miami with seven years of Hillel experience. During rabbinical school he served as a rabbinic intern at Columbia/Barnard Hillel and most recently as the Director of Jewish Life and Learning at Hofstra University Hillel. Rabbi Lyle was ordained and received a MA in Religious Education from Hebrew Union College-JIR in May 2012. He earned an undergraduate degree from Hofstra University in 2004 and graduated with a B.A. in Jewish Studies and a double minor in Philosophy and Religion.
Robin Agronin is thrilled to be joining the UM Hillel team as Director of Development. She grew up in Hollywood, Florida and is a graduate of Syracuse University and Northeastern University, where she studied marketing, retailing and accounting. She has worked in the Jewish community for many years, as both a lay leader and professional, mainly in development for the South Palm Beach County Jewish Federation, Temple Solel and the American Friends of the Hebrew University. Robin especially loved spending so much time in Israel when she worked for the Alexander Muss High School in Israel program, of which she is herself a graduate. Robin is married to Dr. Marc Agronin and has three sons, Jacob, Max and Sam.
Carly is the Director of Leadership Development and Global Experiences at the University of Miami Hillel where she has worked for the last two years. Previously, she spent three and a half years with Metro Chicago Hillel where she realized her passion of building the Jewish community among college students. Prior to arriving in Chicago, Carly spent a year abroad immersing herself in Rishon LeZion, Israel as a Masa Israel Teaching Fellow. She grew up in West Bloomfield, Michigan and went on to attend the University of Michigan (Go Blue!) and earn degrees in Judaic Studies and English. Her love of learning and working in the Jewish non-profit world, led her to pursue a Master’s in Jewish Professional Studies from Spertus Institute of Jewish Learning and Leadership. If you are looking to discuss Miami’s best restaurants, a great documentary, or your next travel adventure come find her in the Jewish Student Life office.
Rachel has just returned to the US after teaching English for one year in Bat Yam, Israel through MASA Israel Teaching Fellows. She is very excited to always have an Israel trip around the corner with Birthright as our new IACT Coordinator. Rachel graduated in 2018 with degrees in Jewish Studies and History from the University of Texas in Austin. Aside from working and volunteering at Hillel during school, Rachel worked for the Anti Defamation League in their education department leading trainings both on and off campus. Besides the Jewish state, Rachel loves dogs, reading and exercising. Born and raised in Houston, Texas, she’s very excited to continue working in the Jewish world here in warm and sunny Miami.
David was born and raised in Harrisburg, PA and recently graduated from the Pennsylvania State University majoring in Advertising and minoring in Business and Sociology.
While at Penn State, David was involved with Hillel and served as a Campus Engagement Intern and Marketing Intern. In the summer 2018, David participated in the Onward Israel Internship program in Tel Aviv, Israel and worked as a social media and event planning intern at The Israel Innovation Fund.
David is excited for the next step in his Hillel journey and to work with the amazing students at UM!
Adam is the Base Rabbi at Base Miami. After growing up in the Five Towns of Long Island and studying in a yeshiva day school, Adam continued his Jewish education receiving a B.A. in Bible from the Jewish Theological Seminary and a B.A. in Religion from Columbia University. With a love of and dedication to learning, teaching, and experiencing Jewish texts, rituals, and life, Adam continued on to receive a Certificate of Jewish education at the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. While living in Israel, Adam received rabbinic ordination from Yeshivat Pirchei Shoshanim and studied safrut (scribal arts) under the tutelage of Rabbi David Gottesman.
Adam worked as an experiential Jewish educator and classroom teacher designing his own curricula and courses in the tri-state area. After winning a cholent cooking competition for charity, Adam established The Chosen Cholent and Smokehouse - a food truck specializing in cholent and authentic BBQ to use as a tool to focus on community gathering, fundraising, and bringing back the love of cholent.
Adam is married to Jessie, and the proud father of the daughter Charlie Ruby and Nadi (the dog).
Jessie is the Senior Educator of Base Miami and has taught in a myriad of different settings, including day schools, Hebrew schools, day camps, overnight camps and on Israel trips. Jessie earned a Master’s degree in Jewish education and a Certificate of Advanced Jewish Studies from the Pardes Educators Program in Jerusalem as well as a Certificate in Jewish Day School Education from Hebrew College of Boston. Prior to receiving her M.A., Jessie received a B.A. in Modern Jewish Studies from the Jewish Theological Seminary, and a B.A. in Middle Eastern Studies from Columbia University.
After graduating from Pardes, Jessie was selected to be a part of the Nadiv Fellowship; an experiential grant through The Foundation of Jewish Camp. As a Nadiv fellow, Jessie worked for several years as the Director of Education at Camp Young Judaea Sprout Lake and the Jewish Life Director at Solomon Schechter Bergen County. Jessie taught in day schools and Hebrew schools and created experiential curricula designed for in and out of the classroom. Jessie is married to Adam and is the proud mama of Charlie Ruby and a crazy cute puppy named Nadi.