Film Council

The Washington Jewish Film Festival (WJFF) Film Council serves as an advisory body, making recommendations to the Director, WJFF staff and EDCJCC Board about WJFF, and supports the Film department’s financial, programmatic and promotional efforts.

The Council plays an important consultative role, augmenting the capacity of the staff and extending the film department’s reach into the community. If you are interested in joining the council, please email Ilya Tovbis at for more information.


Learn more about the members of the 2017 Film Council by clicking on their name below.


Dina Gold, Co-Chair

Dina Gold, a former television journalist with the BBC in London, recently became a US citizen. She now works as a senior editor at “Moment” magazine.


Sid Moskowitz, Co-Chair

Sid Moskowitz, a retired Trademark Attorney, presently invests in real estate. He is enamored with the EDCJCC and all it does for the Washington DC community and the Washington Jewish Film Festival for the great films that it brings to our community throughout the year.


Patty Abramson

Patty Abramson a long time board member of the EDCJCC where she has been active with Theater J and a former co-chair of its Council, the J’s annual Gala, and the Executive Committee. Prior to retiring she was a founding partner and Managing Director of the Women’s Growth Capital Fund, and co-founder of She also spent more than 20 years in the marketing and communications field as President of Abramson Communications and asVice President of Hager, Sharp & Abramson


Michele Berman

Michele Berman is a long time board member of the EDCJCC where she has been active with Theater J and former co-chair of its Council, the J’s annual Gala, Nominating Committee and Executive Committee. She also serves as a Vice Chair of the Arena Stage Board of Trustees. She is very excited to be working on this 25th anniversary year of the film festival.


Anne Clemons

Having just completed a 5 year term as co-chair of the Greater Washington Forum on Israeli Arab Issues (GWFIA), Anne Clemons is new to the WJFF Council.  She has been a board member of The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington’s Women’s Philanthropy Committee, The Planning and Allocation Committee/Jewish Identity Division, and the Jewish Youth Philanthropy Institute (JYPI).  She is a member of AIPAC and Beth Sholom Congregation in Potomac, MD.  Anne is one the original founders of Operation Embrace, a non-profit organization that provides assistance and support to injured survivors of terror in Israel.  She is an accountant and business consultant in private practice and lives in Potomac, MD.


Ed Cohen

Ed Cohen is a lifetime thespian; classically trained at NNHS and UR. Cohen began a 41 year sabbatical to practice tax law before auditioning for Hollywood and Broadway. Told he needed Film Council experience, he is currently completing his 6th year on the WJFF Film Council. Spending his winters in Palm Springs may be the closest he gets to Hollywood. Cohen says, “It’s a pleasure working with the members of our Film Council to bring great films to the DC area.”


Sara Cohen

Sara Cohen is a native Washingtonian and practicing dentist in a 50+ year old D.C. family practice founded by her father and grandfather. Her grandparents were active members of the EDCJCC in its early days. Inspired by the combination of art and science in her work, she believes art and film in particular are the perfect emissaries to give voice to the Jewish experience. She is an active fundraiser for Jewish education and culture, working with the development office of the Charles E. Smith Jewish Day School and the Capital and Endowment Campaign Committee of the DCJCC.  She is married to Norm J. Rich, Vice President of the DCJCC and with four grade school children, is doing her best to create Jewish leaders of the future!


Myrna L. Fawcett

Myrna Fawcett is one of the newest members of the WJFF council. However, she has a long history with the EDCJCC as a member of the Board of Directors and one of the founding members of the Theater J council. In her professional career, Myrna specializes in Elderlaw and representation of adults with special needs. She is a member of the District of Columbia, Maryland, New Jersey, and New York bars, and of the National Academy of Elder Lawyers.


Stephanie Flack

Stephanie Flack is an environmental consultant who got her feet wet in the film festival world serving as Executive Director of the Environmental Film Festival in the Nation’s Capital, the largest and longest running festival of its type in the U.S.  Before her time with the festival, she worked for 19 years with The Nature Conservancy to protect important natural areas and river systems in the Chesapeake Bay region.  In her ambitious youth, Stephanie made a goal to watch all of AFI’s “Top 100 Films” by the age of 30, and proudly reports that she got 75% of the way there. She continues to work towards that goal, though her pace has slowed now that she has to fight her husband and three kids for control of the DVR.


Morgan Greenhouse Genderson

Morgan is the managing partner of Verdehouse, which she originally founded by finding underutilized real estate for artists, events and pop-ups in DC. Today, Verdehouse has evolved to offer creative solutions to real estate development challenges.

Prior to exploring ways to connect creative and corporate communities, Morgan held diverse roles within architecture and interiors at Gensler, a global architecture and design firm. She is a LEED-accredited professional, on the advisory board for the Dupont Underground Arts Coalition and active with the ADL’s NextGen.

Along with a variety of past roles within Young Leadership, Morgan is currently on the Board of Directors for the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington.


Margie Hoffman

For the past 25 years, Margie Hoffman has been busy raising two beautiful daughters, now 25 and 22, and taking care of her wonderful husband. During that time span, she has been engaged in volunteer work, with her daughters’ schools and the community.

She is currently volunteering as a Montgomery County Bone Builder instructor, where she runs exercise classes for the senior population. She is also a co-chair of Congregation Beth El’s Empty Nester Group.  They plan and organize educational and social activities for newly identified congregants who are “Empty Nesters”.

She has a very keen interest and passion for the cinema, which dates back to her college years. A favorite past-time of Margie’s is to go to the Cinema Club at the Avalon twice a month on Sunday mornings. For the past 15 years, she has attended the Sundance Film Festival.  Last year, for the first time, she went to the Telluride Film Festival.

Margie’s passion goes beyond the huge movies that make the big screen. As she watches a film, she derives pleasure thinking about what goes into making it — writing, creativity, filming and editing, music, acting and script — all parts of making a great movie.

She believes cinema plays an important role in our society as a vehicle to not only bring pleasure, but to provide a platform for education, engagement and social change.


Joy Midman

Joy Midman is the founding executive director of the National Association for Children’s Behavioral Health and mental health policy advocate for over 40 years. Washington, D.C. resident active in Jewish communal, political and social justice organizations and causes.  Proud mother of Daniel!


Eric Siegel


Eric Siegel is a principal at the real estate development firm Cohen Siegel Investors, where he is responsible for pursuing and financing acquisition and development opportunities and overseeing the firm’s leasing and property management operations. He formerly practiced as a civil rights lawyer for approximately 25 years.  He currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County.  For the past 10 years, Eric has served as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Capitol Riverfront Business Improvement District in Washington, D.C.  In his spare time, he enjoys seeing live music, paddle boarding and playing in an amateur rock band called Seven Car Pile Up.


Sue-Ann Siegel

Sue-Ann Siegel is a licensed social worker specializing in crisis intervention. In 2016, she was honored by her colleagues with the Every Mind Award for her work and dedication to the National Suicide Prevention Life Line, as well as the local crisis hotlines. She has a passion for teaching on a variety of topics, including crisis protocol, crisis intervention and suicide assessment. She spent five years teaching 4th grade Judaic Studies at Washington Hebrew Congregation. Sue-Ann is a board member of the Women’s Philanthropy of Greater Washington. She enjoys, supports and patronizes the arts with her favorite people, her husband Eric and their three children.


Barbara Silverstein

Subsequent to practicing law, I decided to embrace my brain’s right side, designing hats, jewelry, and purses, gardening, writing, reading, and binging on films…my favorite form of entertainment.


Richard Solloway

Richard Solloway has worked with nonprofits as a grantmaker, consultant, board member and active volunteer for over 40 years. He is President of Solloway & Associates specializing in strategic planning and grants management with a foci on federal grants and international programs. He is a former Board Member of the EDCJCC. Richard has a particular interest in exploring Jewish culture throughout the world and is excited to bring his interests to WJFF. He is a retired Foreign Service Officer and has lived and travelled extensively outside the U.S


Diane Wattenberg

Diane (pictured on her way to see Avatar) spent her childhood seeing movies at the Capitol, Palace and Columbia theaters on F Street.

As a teen, her Saturday afternoons were spent at the Sheridan theater on Georgia Avenue. She saw her first Bergman film (Wild Strawberries) at the Takoma theater. And she still loves going to the movies.


Aviva Kempner, WJFF Founder and Advisor

Aviva Kempner’s career goal is to make films about under-known Jewish heroes. She produced and conceived Partisans of Vilna, wrote, produced and directed the critically acclaimed Yoo-Hoo, Mrs. Goldberg. Kempner directed, wrote and produced the Emmy nominated and Peabody awarded The Life and Times of Hank Greenberg and its new DVD version. She premiered her latest film, Rosenwald, at the 2015 WJFF and regularly tours the country with it. In 2016, Kemper became a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Miriam Mörsel Nathan, WJFF Director Emerita

Miriam Mörsel Nathan co-founded the Washington Jewish Film Festival in 1990 with Founding Director Aviva Kempner.  In addition to her work as Festival Director, she served as a Juror for the Mayor’s Award for Films of the Jewish Experience at the Jerusalem International Film Festival and was Co-Curator of the Israeli Film Festival for the Kennedy Center Celebration of Israel’s 50th Anniversary. A poet and visual artist, Miriam’s work has been exhibited throughout the United States and is in private collections both nationally and abroad.