Five D.C. Area Women Named 2015 Women to Watch by JWI

November 11, 2015
CONTACT: Meredith Jacobs, VP Communications
direct: 202.464.4803 // cell: 301.529.8591

Tech influencer, anti-poverty advocate and kosher chef among of 10 Jewish women leaders to be celebrated at December event in Washington

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Building on a tradition of showcasing Jewish women’s leadership, Jewish Women International has named tech leader Allyson Kapin, CEO of the American Association for Justice, Linda Lipsen; Senior Director of ONE, Laurie Moskowitz; and Jewish cookbook author and pastry chef, Paula Shoyer as 2015 Women to Watch.  Lynn Morgan, community leader and advocate, will also be honored with the Sondra D. Bender Community Leadership Award. 

They are joined by five other women, including attorney Roberta Kaplan, who represented Edie Windsor in the landmark case United States v. Windsor, which struck down the Defense of Marriage Act as part of the 2015 Women to Watch honorees. The annual event, now in its 15th year, will be held on December 7th at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park hotel. The “Up Close & Personal” Symposium (unscripted question and answer session with the honorees, moderated by Meredith Jacobs, former editor-in-chief of the Washington Jewish Week and current VP of communications for JWI) will begin at 9:30. The luncheon, hosted by Ellen Stone, executive vice president of marketing for Bravo & Oxygen Media and member of JWI’s Board of Trustees, will follow at 11:30 am and will end at 2:00 pm. Close to 1,000 attendees are expected.

“Women to Watch” events will kick off on Sunday, December 6th with JWI’s 3nd annual Sondra D. Bender Institute’s Young Women’s Leadership Conference.  Approximately 200 young women in their 20s and 30s will gather to speak with and learn from current and former Women to Watch honorees. The Young Women’s Leadership Network recently expanded to New York with a successful first event attended by more than 125 women.

“This year, JWI is honoring women who have been game changers in the worlds of social justice, technology, global hunger and poverty and Jewish life,” said the organization’s CEO, Lori Weinstein. “We have selected an inspiring group of 10 women leaders and role models who represent a diverse array of fields. Each is leaving her mark on her own community, on the country and on the global community of women JWI works to better every day.

Both the Young Women’s Leadership Conference and the Women to Watch luncheon & symposium will be held at the Washington Marriott Wardman Park hotel.  A limited number of seats are available to press. If interested in attending or covering, please contact Meredith Jacobs.

This year’s honorees are individually profiled in the fall issue of JW magazine as well as at its website, 

Selected for their unique contributions across a wide array of professions, the 2015 D.C.-area honorees are: 

Allyson Kapin, Washington, D.C.
Online advocacy expert; co-author of Social Change Anytime Everywhere; founding partner of the Rad Campaign; named one of the Top Tech Titans by Washingtonian magazine, one of the Most Influential Women in Tech by Fast Company and one of the top 30 women entrepreneurs to follow on Twitter by Forbes.
Linda Lipsen, Washington, D.C.
CEO of the American Association for Justice (formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America); widely honored as an influential lawyer, lobbyist and advocate for injured Americans; former director of the legislative advocacy program for Consumers Union.

Lynn Morgan, Washington, D.C. (Sondra D. Bender Community Leadership Honoree)
Co-founder and president of Morgan Language Services Corporation; member of the board of directors of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington; co-chair of synagogue outreach for AIPAC’s Greater Washington, DC Council; JFGW’s Jerome J. Dick Young Leadership awardee.

Laurie Moskowitz, Washington, D.C.
Political organizer; senior director of U.S. campaigns for ONE, the anti-poverty advocacy organization co-founded by Bono of U2; co-founder of consulting agency FieldWorks; recently introduced a bill in Congress to provide electricity to 50 million African citizens.

Paula Shoyer, Chevy Chase, Md.
French-trained pastry chef teaching classes in French pastry and Jewish cooking in the Washington, DC area and around the world; author of The Holiday Kosher Baker and The Kosher Baker: 160 Dairy-Free Desserts from Traditional to Trendy; freelance writer for numerous news outlets.

Honorees from outside the D.C. area are:

Rebecca Alexander, New York, N.Y.
Psychotherapist, author, extreme athlete and activist; raised awareness and more than $100,000 for the Usher III Initiative, which promotes research on Usher Syndrome, the genetic disease she was diagnosed with as a teen; author of Not Fade Away: A Memoir of Senses Lost and Found.

Deborah Berebichez, New York, N.Y.
Physicist, educator and entrepreneur dedicated to promoting education in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields; the first Mexican woman to graduate with a Ph.D. in physics from Stanford University; currently serves as vice president of risk analysis at MSCI on Wall Street.

Rabbi Sherre Hirsch, Los Angeles, Calif.
The first female rabbi of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles, now spiritual consultant to Canyon Ranch in Arizona and Massachusetts and a nationally-recognized speaker; author of We Plan, God Laughs: What to Do When Life Hits You Over the Head andThresholds: How to Thrive Through Life’s Transitions.

Roberta Kaplan, New York, N.Y.
Litigator; adjunct professor of law at Columbia University Law School; represented Edie Windsor in the landmark case United States v. Windsor, which struck down the Defense of Marriage Act in 2013; author of Then Comes Marriage: United States v. Windsor and the Defeat of DOMA.

Jane Randel, New York, N.Y.
Co-founder of NO MORE; co-president, Karp Randel LLC; advisor to the NFL and NASCAR on domestic violence/sexual assault policy, protocol and programs; and immediate past president of the board of the Corporate Alliance to End Partner Violence. 

More information about Women to Watch is available at


Jewish Women International is the leading Jewish organization empowering women and girls through economic literacy, community training, healthy relationships education, and the proliferation of women’s leadership. JWI’s innovative programs, advocacy, and philanthropic initiatives protect the fundamental rights of all girls and women to live in safe homes, thrive in healthy relationships, and realize the full potential of their personal strength. Learn more at, and