Professional Staff

Professional Staff

Gail Gilmartin
Executive Director
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Gail is a California native who has been in the Valley of the Sun for 30 years, including her days as a college student at Arizona State University. As a proud Sun Devil, she has been a part of the Phoenix nonprofit, fund-raising, and event world since 1996. Starting with what was the Tostitos Fiesta Bowl back in the 90’s as the Volunteer & Event Coordinator, her nonprofit background includes leadership positions with the Muscular Dystrophy Association, Special Olympics Arizona, National Kidney Foundation of Arizona, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Boys & Girls Clubs of the East Valley, and Greater Scottsdale and Cortney’s Place.

Always having been a part of Phoenix Jewish Community, Gail was the Kadima Advisor at Beth El Congregation while at ASU, Youth Advisor at Har Zion, and Youth Director at Temple Beth Sholom of the East Valley in the early 2000s. Most recently, she enjoyed the past two and a half years working as Director of Clergy, Administrative, and Member Services for Congregation Beth Israel in Scottsdale. 

Gail cherishes the friendships she made growing up in Far West USY in Southern California while representing Far West Region as the Kadima/Membership VP in the late 80s and continues her love of Judaism and Israel as a past participant and community leader for the Momentum/Project Inspire AZ trip to Israel.

She comes from a strong lineage of Jewish women and volunteer leadership and brings with her the knowledge of growing up admiring and learning from the best.

Andre Ivory
Education Director
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Andre is a dedicated Jewish Educator with 20 years of service to Jewish communities in Los Angeles, Toronto, Canada, and for the last 10 years here in the Valley of the Sun.

Andre’s love for working in Jewish education has its roots in many summers inspiring youth as an educator at Camp Ramah in Canada, in addition to four years spent as a Kadima / USY Advisor and regional staff member, to youth directorship at Beth Tzedec Congregation in Toronto, Canada and at Or Chadash. He has served the valley of the sun Jewish community as camp director at the East Valley JCC, Program Director and Director of Youth Education at Temple Beth Shalom of the West Valley, and an educator with the Bureau of Jewish Education. Andre is committed to deepening lifelong learning in the areas of Jewish holidays, Shabbat, and contemporary Jewish thought and spirituality.

Away from his service to the Jewish community, Andre coaches ice hockey with 23 years of experience behind the bench.

Sarah Bochenek
Youth Director
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Sarah is a Jewish Educator and Youth Director with over 10 years of experience. 

Starting as a Religious School Educator in college at Beth El, Margate, NJ Sarah moved out to Arizona in 2007 with a BFA in Performing arts and a minor in Judaic Studies. Beginning her Arizona life as a USY Advisor and religious school teacher at Temple Beth Sholom of the East Valley, as well as working retail. Through the years, she completed a Master’s degree in Psychology and taught preschool for five years, first at the East Valley JCC and then at the Valley of the Sun JCC, all while continuing at TBS-EV.

Benyamin Ben Ari
Program Administrator
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Ben was born and raised in Scottsdale, AZ (a Horizon High School Class of 2000 graduate) and has spent the last 19 years living in Israel with his family, who has recently returned to Arizona.

Most recently, Ben has used his administrative and analytical skills as a tour guide, handling logistics, coordination, and marketing throughout Israel.

Ben will be working closely with our clergy and directly with the B’nai Mitzvah Program, many of the special events, and programs offered to our congregation.

Marie E. Jones
Office Administrator
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Marie E. Jones was born and raised on Chicago’s southeast side. She moved to the Valley of the Sun in the summer of 2020 to live the 2nd half of her life. 

She received her Associate’s Degree from Lexington College in Hotel Management and has worked at Hilton Chicago and Starcom MediaVest over her 30-year career. In December 2003, she started working at JUF News (now Jewish Chicago) as an Advertising Assistant. Over her 16 years at the Jewish United Fund (JUF), she has worked as an Administrative Assistant for Community Outreach, working with Birthright Israel, MASA, and the Communications Department. In 2014, she was promoted to Publishing Manager of JUF News which included editing the Simchas, What’s Happening (calendar), For A Blessing (obituaries), and the Guide to Jewish Living in Chicago (in print and online). She returned to school to study Marketing with a Communications and Media minor at National-Louis University. 

Marie hopes to use her years working in the Jewish community assisting Congregation Or Tzion.

Pam Carson
Contact Pam Carson

Pam Carson started with Congregation Or Tzion in February 2019 as a
bookkeeper through an agency and became an employee in August 2019. She
has been in the accounting field for over 20 years. She enjoys cooking and
walking her dog, Missy.