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Samantha Cohen

Responsible for the Talent Development and Program Portfolio of the organization, Sam works closely with Sue Gelsey, chief program officer, to lead and guide talent management and program initiatives across JCC Association.

Sam also leads JCC Maccabi®, a signature program of JCC Association. In this role, she provides strategic leadership, guidance, and support to the field’s JCC Maccabi® host communities and more than 70 delegations as they use sport and the arts to build strong Jewish community and Jewish identity across North America.

Prior to her work at JCC Association, which began in November 2018, Sam worked at the Merage JCC of Orange County, CA, where, among other roles, she directed the 2013 and 2018 JCC Maccabi Games and ArtsFest® and served as the agency’s associate executive director. She is well versed in program development, operations, leadership development, organizational management, community relations, and advocacy.

Originally from London, she received a bachelor’s degree in politics and international relations from the University of Manchester and a master’s degree in human rights from the London School of Economics. In addition to her first JCC Maccabi Games® experience as a teen tennis player representing Great Britain, Sam has served as a coach, delegation head, or games director at 18 different JCC Maccabi Games® and 10 International Maccabi Games® across four continents. Most recently, she was a medalist in the 35+ Masters tennis category at the 2019 Pan-American Maccabi Games® in Mexico City. Sam lives in New York City and is a proud member of the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan, NY.