Our Board and Advisors
WESTCOAST JEWISH THEATRE BOARD OF DIRECTORS
NAOMI KARZ JACOBS received her M.A. from UCLA. She is the author of several plays produced in Los Angeles, including What A Racquet and Next Year In Jerusalem, as well as her memoir The Builder's Daughter. A native of Los Angeles, she spent many years in Baltimore where she served on the boards of Jewish Education and the Citizen's Committee for Recreation, and was President of the Baltimore Hadassah. Back in Los Angeles, she has served on the board of the American National Theatre Academy (West) and been active in a wide range of organizations including The Dramatists' Guild, Alliance of Los Angeles Playwrights, First Stage, Lehman Engel Musical Theatre Workshop, Actors' Forum, World Affairs Council, and the Sierra Club.
LESLIE MARTINSON is a director of 98 movies and television series ranging from Private Benjamin, Diff'rent Strokes, Fantasy Island, Most Wanted, Barnaby Jones, Love-American Style, Room 222, Mission Impossible, Mister Roberts, the 1965 TV series Run for your Life, 77 Sunset Strip, the Roy Rogers Show (14 episodes), Maverick and General ElectricTheatre (TV series). Leslie is also an accomplished pianist and composer.
JACK FINE is a prominent attorney and Judge Pro Tem in Los Angeles, as well as an accomplished mediator and arbitrator. His love for theatre has led him into several endeavors including co-founding The Freeway Circuit, Inc. with Corey Allen, and serving as a Producing Partner for L.A. TheatreWorks. He was a founding member of the Los Angeles African American-Jewish Leadership Council, and has served on a number of non-profit boards including the L.A. Chapter of the American Jewish Committee, The Jewish Community Relations Committee, and the Los Angeles Modern Dance and Ballet Company. He has also served as National Vice President for the Coro Alumni. He has and A.B. and J.D. from Stanford University.
RUTH DAVIS is President of Ruth Alben Speakers Service, a nationally known agency that schedules speakers and entertainers. She is also an artist and singer, and performs regularly in the Los Angeles area. In her home town of New Bedford, Massachusetts, she performed in radio, TV, summer stock and nightclubs. Immediately after graduating from Syracuse University, she became a producer for CBS News in New York City. She hosted a radio show for WEVD there called Women in the News. She currently serves on the Board of Governors of American Film Institute Associates.
STEPHEN FIFE is an award-winning playwright, journalist, and book writer. His plays have been produced in NYC at The Jewish Repertory Theatre, Playhouse 91, Primary Stages, Circle Rep, La Mama, Theater for the New City, the Samuel Beckett Theater, and in LA at a variety of different venues. His evening of romantic comedies, This Is Not What I Ordered, is published by Samuel French. His critically acclaimed memoir BEST REVENGE: How the Theater Saved My Life and Has Been Killing Me Ever Since was published by Cune Press in 2004. A graduate of Sarah Lawrence College and Columbia's School of the Arts, his writings on theater, film, and art have appeared in The New York Times, New Republic, Village Voice, New York Newsday, and many others.
RUTH LANE FLINKMAN was born in the Bronx, New York, where she attended Columbus High School and State University of N.Y. As a child performer, she sang and danced on the Hearns' Children's Hour, Major Bowes and with Paul Whiteman on TV. She also performed in regional theatre: Pirates of Penzance (Mabel), Dames At Sea (Mona Kent), Cabaret (Fraulein Schneider). She still performs for various charitable events as a member of Larry Covin's entertainment group, and just taped a show for Chinese TV. Ruthie has dedicated herself to community work including roles as President of the Westside Lawyers' Wives, Keren and Ophira Groups of Hadassah, the Women's Division of ARMDI. She is a board member of The Beverly Hills Theatre Guild, Theatre 40, Ophira, American Friends of Magen David Adom (ARMDI), The Jazz Bakery. She and her late husband, Stan Flinkman, are founders of American Friends of Hebrew University, American Technion Society, and American Associates, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, of which Ruthie is Southwest Region Development Chair and National Board member. She is also a founder of the Music Center Theatre Group.
PHYLLIS FRIEDEL is a character actress who was very active in Scottsdale Arizona before coming to Los Angeles. She has been a major supporter of the Arizona Jewish Theater. She is a life member of both The National Council of Jewish Women and Hadassah, and served on the Board of the Federation of Greater Phoenix. When she and her late husband lived in Omaha, Nebraska, they endowed the Friedel Jewish Academy, a Jewish School for Kindergarten thru 6th Grade.
HERB ISAACS brings to the WCJT an unusual combination of theatre savvy and professional and organizational skills. He has been a longtime performer, writer, and director in the Los Angeles area, and a highly regarded management consultant to business, government and non-profits. In recent years he has focused on directing a variety of new works, established plays and musical theatre productions. He was Founding Board President of the Academy for New Musical Theatre. He served on the board of Los Angeles Channel 36 where he created the show Theatre Now. His director training was with Allison Liddi, the Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab West, and the Ensemble Studio Theatre Workshop.
SYLVIA KREINER is a business woman with longterm experience as controller for a company with cellular phone and music business lines. Her nonprofit activites include volunteer work for Camp Ronald McDonald, and for Oasis, a senior citizens center. She has also assisted the City of Hope with fundraising.
RUTH LOW is an interior designer. She is involved with several philanthropic endeavors including Israel Bonds and Israel Tennis Centers, and is a member of Beth Am and Hillcrest Country Club.
HANK ROSENFELD wrote plays in NYC for the DaK, Bond Street and HEAP Theater companies, touring with shows to Holland, Germany, Minneapolis and New Jersey. His solo show Women are from Venice, Men are from Mar Vista was performed in bookstores and theaters in L.A. His stories and commentaries air on public radio shows like All Things Considered and Weekend America and his first book, written with Irving Brecher, will be published by Ben Yehuda Press: Go For The Jocular! The Wicked Wit of the West, Irving Brecher on feeding the lions of film, radio, TV & vaudeville: Groucho Garland, Berle, Burns, Benny and many more. He writes for the Los Angeles Times, the Forward, the Jewish Journal, HeeB, Moment and other magazines.
MURIEL SCHOICHET has a Masters in Public Health. She is on the Board of the West Hollywood Senior Citizens Programs and a former President of the American Jewish Congress. She is very active in Democrats for Israel and politics in general, and is involved with membership groups that interact at a high level with elected officials.
MALACHI THRONE is a traveling player at heart through some sixty-two years of performing, starting at the 1939 World's Fair as a young singer. He continued to split his time between academia and show biz, playing in summer and winter stock. Off Broadway he had roles in the legendary productions of The Iceman Cometh, Threepenny Opera, Rocket to the Moon and Machinal. On Broadway he played in Beckett, The Girls Against the Boys, Lorenzo and The Legend of Lizzie. He has appeared on numerous live television shows and soaps, such as The Defenders, Studio One, Robert Montgomery Presents, Edge of Night and Search for Tomorrow. He also co-starred with Robert Wagner in It Takes a Thief. His voice has been heard on many commercials including Revlon, American Plastics, Castrol, Jeep and Goodyear.
HOWARD TEICHMAN was born in Toronto, Canada and emigrated to Chicago, Howard’s career in theatre began at Second City as a writer/creator/performer of a World Premiere children’s show called Commedia. He toiled many years in the theatre to emerge in Los Angeles as a theatre director of note. In 2008 the Beverly Hills Outlook named him best director of Beverly Hills for his critically acclaimed production of Neil Simon’s Lost in Yonkers. Mr. Teichman also directed to critical acclaim James Sherman’s From Door to Door at the Electric Lodge in Venice, California. In 2007 he directed the big Theatre 40 hit, Daniel Goldfarb’s Broadway hit Modern Orthodox, and was nominated by the LA Weekly as Best Comedy Director. Prior to Modern Orthodox. Mr. Teichman also directed several other critically acclaimed Theatre 40 productions including Richard Martin Hirsch’s Atonement, Neil Simon’s Rumors, and Simcha, which he wrote, directed, and played the starring role. His other directing credits include Kaufman-Teichmann'sThe Solid Gold Cadillac, Leon Katz’s The Three Cuckolds, Oscar Wilde’s Salome (Garland Best Director’s Nominee), Diana Amsterdam’s Fast Girls. He adapted and created the French play by A.Dennery and Eugene Corman, Orphans of the Storm which became a movie starring Lillian and Dorothy Gish. He has also produced Jeremy Lawrence’s Cabaret: Verboten for the Mark Taper Forum at the Itchy Foot and was also part of the producing team for George C. Wolfe’s Tony award winning production Jelly’s Last Jam. He is proud to be one of the leaders of Theatre 40’s Writer’s Workshop. He produced along with Hindi Brooks Shortages An Evening of Short Plays where he directed Alice Lunsford’s Catch of the Day and also produced Benchmarks, a festival of Ten Minute Plays. Howard has directed numerous other plays at different venues throughout the Los Angeles area. He is excited to be working on his next production The Fugu Plan based on a true story about how the Japanese government saved over six thousand Jewish lives during World War II. Howard holds a B.A. and an M.F.A. from UCLA in Theatre Arts.