Mrs. Deborah Zachai, longtime director of Agudath Israel’s Yeshiva Services division, has announced her plan to retire at the end of this calendar year. Recognizing the importance of maintaining the high standards of yeshiva advocacy and representation established by Mrs. Zachai throughout her tenure, the Agudah is proud to welcome Rabbi Yehoshua Pinkus as the organization’s new Director of Yeshiva Services.
The Yeshiva Services division of Agudath Israel serves as a vital resource for yeshivos and day schools throughout New York State and other parts of the country. Besides for sending out informative emails on a regular basis and providing workshops on a myriad of topics, it represents and advocates on behalf of yeshivos before city, state and federal legislatures and governmental agencies.
From helping obtain funding for busing, textbooks, library materials, computers, smartboards and security needs, to providing compliance advice and needed intervention, to fighting to preserve the autonomy of our system of chinuch, the Yeshiva Services division is the address to which principals and administrators have turned to help deal with the challenges of the day. Rabbi Yehoshua Pinkus brings years of experience to the table, having served for the past nine years as the executive director of Joan Dachs Bais Yaakov Elementary School -Yeshivas Tiferes Tzvi in Chicago, Illinois. As the executive director of the largest day-school in the Midwest, Rabbi Pinkus forged strong relationships with school administrators across the country and worked closely with Agudath Israel of Illinois on various community projects including busing, school lunch programs, the Illinois Scholarship Tax Credit Program as well as advocacy on the state and local levels.
In carrying out his new responsibilities, Rabbi Pinkus will be joining a team at the Agudah that has a strong track record of success in servicing the yeshiva community–Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel, the organization’s executive vice president; Rabbi Labish Becker, executive director; Avrohom Weinstock, Esq., chief of staff; and Rabbi Ami Bazov, Esq., coordinator of education affairs.
Rabbi Pinkus will also work closely with Rabbi Abba Cohen, Agudath Israel’s vice president for government affairs and Washington office director; with Mrs. Leah Steinberg, director of Project LEARN, Agudath Israel’s special education division; with the national network of Agudah regional directors under the leadership of Rabbi A.D. Motzen, Agudath Israel’s national director of state relations, including Rabbi Yeruchim Silber, director of NY government relations; and with a newly constituted Yeshiva Services board.
“We thank Mrs. Zachai for her almost four decades of work on behalf of yeshivos. We will certainly miss her,” said Rabbi Chaim Dovid Zwiebel. Her record of accomplishments is nothing short of amazing. “We are grateful that she will be staying on for a few months as director emeritus of the Yeshiva Services division to help Rabbi Pinkus transition to his new role. We look forward to continuing and enhancing the level of service we provide to yeshivos.”
“Helping yeshivos has been an integral part of my life for so many years,” said Mrs. Zachai. “It has been an honor and a privilege to have done so under the banner of Agudas Yisroel. I will forever be grateful for the siyata diShmaya I had in serving as a resource and an advocate for the yeshiva community, and I am confident that Rabbi Pinkus will merit the same siyata diShmaya in the months and years to come.”
Said Rabbi Pinkus, “I look forward to enhancing my existing relationships with yeshivos and their administrations across New York State and beyond, as well as forging new relationships in order to work b’achdus for the benefit of the yeshiva and day school community.”