Hebrew Academy of the Five Towns

and Rockaway High School

Gabrielle Lovett, of Woodmere, is HAFTR’s Class of 2012 Valedictorian.

At HAFTR Gabrielle was Captain of College Bowl, President of Model Congress, President of the National Honor Society, and participated in the following: Math Team, Science and Engineering Club, Science Research, Volleyball, Food Delivery to the Needy, Intel Competition. She plans to major in Chemistry at Columbia University.

Hillel Friedman is HAFTR’s Salutatorian. There is no question that he is extremely intelligent and high achieving. That is only the tip of the iceberg. Hillel believes that each one of us is a thinker, an adventurer and a discoverer. He advocates that we use our minds for innovation rather than memorization, for creativity rather than for rote activity, for rumination rather than stagnation. He also feels that the world needs people who have the intellectual courage and awareness to ask, to challenge and to innovate. Hillel also has had to cope with the serious illness of his father who has been wheelchair bound for much of this young man’s life. He has done an incredible amount for him and often, while there have been hospitalizations or treatments he has learned to be independent and self-sufficient.

Hillel has done an amazing amount of scientific research. One of his most recent projects has been on inhibition leading top 53 and DRM upregulation. He has also worked on a project dealing with bacterial contamination of various substances in an effort to identify a more bacterially resistant material to replace scrubs. As a matter of fact, he just worked on a paper that will soon be published about the effects of two different drugs on cell cycle progression and apoptosis in a disease called multiple myeloma. He even spent the past two summers doing intensive research in clinical pharmacology at Sloan Kettering in Manhattan. In the field of mathematics, Hillel has explored the enigmatic nature of prime numbers. As far as leadership in school and in the community, nobody surpasses him. He has been an editor for a major school publication, and is either captain or president of Debate Team, Mock Trial, College Bowl, and Model Congress. He is even captain of our tennis team. I have personally seen him put together events for several hundred students and lead his teams to victory after victory. Whatever he can do to help others, he does with compassion with skill and with humility. From delivering food to the needy to helping youngsters who have serious illnesses in their families to being a youth leader, he truly gives of himself. Hillel also gives assistance to his peers in that he tutors countless students of all levels in almost every imaginable subject. Finally, he is a gifted musician who has undertaken independent studies in this area.

Hebrew Academy of Nassau County(HANC)

Marissa Young, of West Hempstead is HANC’s Class of 2012 Valedictorian. Marrisa was very active during her years at HANC, earning many awards and accolades as follows:   President – Student Senate, Editor in Chief – School Newspaper, Co-captain – College Bowl, Co-captain – Model United Nations, Varsity Softball, Debate Team,  National Honor Society, Honor Roll, AP Scholar with Honor,  Literary Magazine, National Merit Scholarship Competition Finalist, Gildor International Science Competition, Hempstead Boys and Girls Club Volunteer, Peer Tutoring Society, E2K Science Program, Ambassador to Bulgaria Service Mission, Young Israel of West Hempstead Youth Group leader, Ohel Leadership Program, Intern for United States Senator Charles Schumer and NYS Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos, University of Rochester Frederick Douglass and Susan B. Anthony Award, West Hempstead Community Scholarship Award, Sharon Dratt Memorial Award, New York State Scholarship for Academic Excellence Award, Miriam Rosensweig Memorial Award. Marrisa plans to study political science at Columbia University. 

Rambam Mesivta

Rambam Mesivta’s 2012  Valedictorian, Daniel Edleman , and the Salutatorian, Joshua Moskovits . Daniel Edelman will be attending Yeshiva University in their Honors Program and Joshua Moskovits will be attending Princeton University.

Davis Renov Stahler Yeshiva H.S. for Boys

Yonatan Mehlman has been named Valedictorian at Davis Renov Stahler Yeshiva H.S. for Boys in Woodmere, New York. Yonatan has maintained a near-perfect grade point average throughout his four years at DRS. He is a member of the National Honor Society, an AP Scholar with Honor and a member of the Principal’s Honor Roll. Yonatan has assumed numerous leadership roles at DRS: he is Captain of the Debate Club, Editor of the Journal of Ethics & Jewish Law, a contributing writer for the Spanish Magazine, and a member of the Mock Trial Team, among others. During the summers he has studied at NCSY Kollel in Israel and has interned at Safe Water Network, a non-profit organization that is committed to providing sustainable, safe water solutions to the developing world. Yonatan enjoys an academic challenge and has excelled in all his endeavors. He has been admitted to the Honors Program with a full tuition scholarship at Yeshiva University, where he plans to study medicine. Next year, Yonatan will study in Israel at Yeshivat Har Etzion (Gush).

Elisha Ishaal has been named Salutatorian at Davis Renov Stahler Yeshiva High School for Boys. From the day he entered DRS, Elisha has been on an intellectual journey in both Judaic and Secular studies, earning outstanding scores in all subjects. His interests are varied, ranging from philosophy to politics, and science to art. Elisha is an AP Scholar with Honor, a member of the National Honor Society and a member of the Principal’s Honor Roll. Elisha, a contributing writer for the DRS Torah Publication, has been First and Third Place winner for two consecutive years at the YU Talmud Competition. Throughout his years in high school Elisha has worked as a carpenter, initially as an apprentice and later supervising a call center for maintenance work. Currently he is self employed and accepts private clients. Elisha has been awarded an academic scholarship to New York University, where he plans to pursue his college studies. Next year he will take a gap year to learn at Yeshivat Yishrei Lev in Israel.

Jonathan Aivazi has been voted the recipient of the Keter Shem Tov Award at Davis Renov Stahler Yeshiva H.S. for Boys. The award, the ‘Crown of a Good Name’, denotes the student who has been selected by his peers as representing the fundamental principles of intellect, character and integrity. An outstanding student, a thoughtful and sincere individual, Jonathan exhibits the very best of the DRS graduate in both Judaic and Secular subjects. He is a member of the National Honor Society and the Principal’s Honor Roll. He is an AP Scholar and a participant in the Jerusalem Science Competition. Jonathan is a contributing writer to the DRS e-newsletter, the Torah Journal and the Spanish Magazine, Ole. He has volunteered with special needs children and the elderly and has participated in numerous charity events. He has also been an active volunteer in his community’s synagogue. Next year Jonathan will study in Israel at Yeshivat Kerem B’Yavneh, and will attend Queens College upon his return.

Stella K. Abraham H.S. for Girls (SKA)

Ahava Muskat, of Oceanside, is Stella K. Abraham H.S. for Girls’ Valedictorian for the Class of 2012. Ahava is a two-time peer-voted winner of the Midot Award, acknowledged for her fine character. She was Captain of the Debate Team, Captain of Model Congress, Production Choir Head. Literary Editor of the Senior Yearbook and Literary Editor of the Literary Journal. She was also an SKA representative to Write On for Israel, a student Israel advocacy program. She has volunteered as a Homework Helper at SKA, as a visitor to patients at a local hospital and in JEP, a Jewish outreach program. Ahava plans to study at Shaalvim in Jerusalem, Israel post high school and then to attend Stern College for Women.

North Shore Hebrew Academy High School

For the first time in the school’s 11 year history, North Shore Hebrew Academy High School has named three Valedictorians as a result of their identical 98 grade point average. The faculty could not distinguish one from the other as a result of their academic excellence, outstanding Midot and Torah values and their unparalleled extra-curricular and summer internships. The three students represent the school’s diverse student body, coming from Woodmere, Jamaica Estates and Great Neck. Mackenzie Berman will be attending Princeton University where he plans to study Financial Engineering. Jason Lefkovitz will be attending Cornell University’s Industrial Labor Relations School where he plans to study Political Science. Benjamin Markowitz will be attending Harvard University where he plans to study Economics.

HAFTR Middle School


Stephanie Greenfield

Stefanie served as the Editor of the School yearbook. Additionally Stephanie was a member of the debate team, Vice President of her 7th grade class and a member of the MAOR Honor Society. She was accepted into the John Hopkins Honor Program For Talented Youths. She also tutors other students in her spare time. She will attend HAFTR High School in the fall.

Justin Glickman

Justin is a member of the Maor Honor Society. He was captain of HAFTR’s Torah Bowl team, and was on the debate and basketball teams. He participated in Tomchei Shabbos, E2K science enrichment program , Mishmar, and served as a shadow for the Kulanu Sunday respite program for three years. Justin will attend HAFTR High School in the fall.


Mikalya Fuchs

Mikayla served as the Vice President of the student council (GO. She was on the Torah Bowl, and debate teams and participated in the Names Not Numbers holocaust documentary program. In addition, she participated in after-school math and science enrichment E2K program for 2 years. Mikayla will attend HAFTR High School in the fall.

Jonathan Bakshi

Jonathan had a tremendous experience in HAFTR middle school. He is a member of the MAOR National Junior Honor Society. He was on the Torah bowl team from 6th through 8th grade and a member of the Bible club. He was selected to be on the Kochavim honor roll. He participated in Tomchei Shabbos and attended Mishmar weekly from 6th through 8th grade. Jonathan will attend North Shore Hebrew Academy High School in the fall where he earned a merit scholarship award.