Laura Lipman: Laura is Gan Shalom’s Director. Laura came to teaching at the Gan in a roundabout way. Her children attended Gan Shalom, after which she became a Hebrew school teacher, then a public school teacher, and then the much beloved director of the Gan. For Laura, Torah comes alive each day at Gan Shalom in learning about the lives of parents, teachers and young children.

Tati ArgueTati Argue started her career in ECE in 1996. Eighteen years later she finds every day spent with young children full of wonder and new insights (not to mention humor). She also has been teaching Hip Hop dance to children and adults of all ages for many years in many venues, but most notably at the Berkeley YMCA. She is a native Berkeleyan.

InbalInbal Cohen-Sadi is an energetic and passionate Jewish Educator. Inbal views teaching as a blessing and joyful privilege. Inbal was born and raised in Haifa, Israel, and she brings to the classroom her love to Israel through songs, stories, and other art forms. Besides teaching Inbal loves cooking, gardening, and spending as much time as she can with her family.

FrankelJan Frankel is the new afternoon bilingual teacher in Gan Shalom. She was born in Berkeley, raised in Oakland, and majored in Environmental Studies and Judaic Studies at UCSC.  Jan and her husband made aliya as newlyweds to Kibbutz Gezer where she worked with young children.   She and her family returned to the Bay Area where Jan earned her ECE teaching credential at Merritt College.  For the last three years she has worked at Congregation Beth El Nursery School.

Greenland1Alison Greenland: Ali graduated from Indiana University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Art. She is currently getting her Early Childhood Education certificate as well as her Jewish Education for Adolescents and Emerging Adults certificate. Ali enjoys working with children, especially in a Jewish setting.

Robin MendelsonRobin: When Robin opened her eyes, she knew she was supposed to teach young children. It is her passion and blessing. Her other passions include her cats, the Beatles, hula hoops, dancing, pomegranates and studying Torah. Robin won the prestigious Diller Award for Excellence in Early Childhood Education in 2011.

pollick for Gan websiteMeredith Pollick grew up in the Berkeley Jewish Community and is an accomplished Educator and Leader. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Theater and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction with an emphasis in Early Childhood Education. Meredith is a passionate reader, writer, dancer and educator with a natural curiosity for exploration, discovery, music and fun. Meredith is thrilled to join the Beth Israel Community at Gan Shalom as the Lead Teacher of the new Toddler program, Keshet. She is happily married to her high school sweet heart Callen, and together they have three children, Eliana, Zev & Abigail.


RisaRisa Dye:  As a former princess, Risa has great experience enchanting youth. She weaves her training as a physical performer and a textile artist into her educating.Risa’s extraordinary background includes a year in Paris studying movement and circus arts, and her creativity and warmth are contagious.

MelitaMelita Doostan:  Melita currently works in a number of schools, and also runs a music school from her home for parents and children.  Using puppets and an array of acoustic instruments, she inspires little ones to discover their creative spark through song, story, movement, and dance.



Joelle Yzquierdo, Preschool Administrator
Joelle makes sure everything runs smoothly. Joelle can be reached at (510) 843-5246 or