Rena Allen - Young Pioneers Award 2019 Recipient


Rena Allen, Central Synagogue


Rena Allen, Young Pioneers Award 2019

Rena Allen is the Director of Developmental Learning and Special Education at Central Synagogue. She is passionate about making Jewish education accessible to all learners, and structuring environments that contribute to student success. Rena earned a B.A. in psychology from Binghamton University and an MS.Ed. in special education from Bank Street College. Rena’s career has taken her from classroom teaching to early intervention, and has landed her in her current work — focusing on teacher training and program development in synagogues across Manhattan. Rena is a proud alumna of the Ruskay Fellowship and deeply enjoys both participating in, and conducting leadership training for young professionals in the field of Jewish Education.

From the Recipient: 

"Receiving the Young Pioneers Award is humbling, and an extraordinary honor. I am so proud that the Jewish Community is further committing to improving the access points of Jewish Education, by investing in special educators. I feel lucky to work for institutions who value this work, and walk the walk." 

Reflections from Colleagues: 

“We are so honored to see Rena recognized for the wonderful and important work she does at Central. Her commitment to every child and every teacher has influenced all of us to be better, more inclusive educators. We are so proud of all Rena has done, and we look forward to continuing to elevate the work of inclusion at Central.” - Rabbi Rebecca Rosenthal, Director of Youth & Family Education, Central Synagogue

“Rena Allen is a master educator who has transformed the way we think about teaching to the ‘special needs’ of every child. Her expertise in learning differences has made for more creative and inclusive classrooms. She is a teacher of teachers and we are so proud that her gifts as an educator are being recognized with The Jewish Education Project's Young Pioneers Award." Rabbi Angela Buchdahl, Senior Rabbi, Central Synagogue



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