Talmud Torah Staff

Meet our talented Talmud Torah Staff. Our instructors are highly experienced and meet the individual needs of your children as well as conduct interesting and fun class discussions on various Jewish topics, Jewish history, and Hebrew language studies.

Nanci Siegel Manson | Director of Education and Youth

nanci@bethelphoenix.com | (602) 944-3359 ext. 123


Nanci Siegel Manson is originally from St. Louis, Missouri and has lived in Phoenix for the past 29 years. She graduated from the University of Missouri with a degree in Elementary Education with an endorsement in Early Childhood Education. Nanci has worked for the Valley of the Sun JCC as a Camp Director and as the Assistant Director in the Early Childhood Center. Prior to joining Beth El, Nanci developed the preschool at Har Zion in Scottsdale over 25 years ago. She served for three of those years as their Director of Education, responsible for both the preschool and religious school.

Nanci lives in Scottsdale with her husband, Roy, and has 4 grown children.  Nanci is an avid outdoor walker, and Roy enjoys a good golf game. They both enjoy watching movies, both old and new. She loves to visit her family around the country and playing with her grand puppies. Nanci is excited to become a grandma when her daughter and son in law have their first baby in early December.


Wendy Adair | Education Department Assistant

talmudtorah@bethelphoenix.com | (602) 944-2464 ext. 122

Wendy Adair is a native of Arizona who grew up in Phoenix belonging to Temple Beth Israel growing up. Prior to her employment at Beth El, she retired from a career in Law Enforcement as a Parole and Probation Officer having worked in both the Arizona State Corrections department and then in Lane County Oregon’s Corrections Department. She has worked in women’s prisons, men’s prisons, and in community corrections.

After returning to Phoenix (from Eugene, Oregon) following her retirement, Wendy decided to join Beth El Congregation to be with her family who was already members. It was here at Beth El that she found a comforting and spiritual home. In 2005, Wendy joined the Beth El Staff as an Administrative Assistant of the Education Department. Working at Beth El strengthens her connection to Judaism, and she learns a lot from her colleagues as well as from the entire Beth El Community.  Being a part of the Talmud Torah Community is one of the highlights of her day-to-day living as she states, “I feel so fortunate to work at a place that I love being a part of!”

Wendy passes on her love of Judaism and learning to her beloved grandchildren. She and her family just celebrated her fourth grandson becoming a Bar Mitzvah! She has her grand-daughter as a 6th grade student in Talmud Torah.


Mechinah ♦ Pre-K, Kindergarten & 1st Grade Class Teacher

Liat Ashkenazi

My name is Liat Ashkenazi, born in Israel, married to Yaron, and mother to 4 children. My children are Amit, 22, an officer in the IDF after doing “Aliya” to Israel, Itai, 17, a student in 11th grade in Pinnacle high school, Ori and Yali (twin boys) 11.5 studying 6th grade in Pardes Jewish day school.
Most of my career I done in the Israeli Defence Forces, served in several positions in the Navy and a special intelligence unit. I was the head of PR and Navy’s spokeswoman in the rank of lieutenant. I was the head of casualty division in a rank of captain, sensitive position dealt operations of hundreds of families lost their relatives and various injuries during military service in all Navy units. This position was the contact for the families letting emotional and psychological support and a direct link to the commander of the Navy.
One of the achievements which I am proud of is serving as the head of the “Atidim” project in a rank of major. I was responsible to provide visionary, strategic, and operational leadership for an educational project that trained over 1500 students that came from the country’s periphery to get academic high education and join special technology units in the IDF. The process concluded escorting students from 7th grade till graduation, monitoring evaluating, and recruiting to universities. I was was very proud to see our students growing to be engineers and doctors in the leading intelligence units of the army.
I studied Psychology, Criminology, and Sociology at Bar Ilan University and hold a Bachelor of Arts with excellency.
I relocated with my family to Europe in 2003- from Romania, Germany, and two years ago arrived in Arizona.
I decided to dedicate the next step of my career to education and I’m happy to be part of this venture. I love cooking and traveling with my family to exotic places and I love Israel.

Bet Gimmel ♦  2nd & 3rd Grade Class Teacher

Michele Gusdorff

We are fortunate to have Michele Gusdorff teaching in our Talmud Torah for 12 years.  Michele holds both a BA and MA from  Temple University where she majored in Speech and Language Pathology.  She also holds a Hebrew Teacher’s Diploma from Gratz College.

In addition to many years’ experience as a Speech Therapist in the Philadelphia School District, Michele taught in Philadelphia area religious schools and was an active volunteer and board member at synagogues.

To contact Michele, email  bet.bethelphoenix@gmail.com

Kitah Gimmel ♦ 4th & 5th Grade Class Teacher

Nora Elias


Nora is a native of Argentina who also lived in Israel and New York before coming to the Valley.

In Israel she studied at Machon Greenberg in Jerusalem.  She actively pursues educational opportunities through NAEYC (National Association for the Education of Young Children) and CAJE (Coalition for Alterna tives in Jewish Education).  Nora is a very familiar face at Beth El – she has been teaching at the Beth El Early Childhood Center since 1989 – this year she is teaching the new Pre-K class.   A decade after she began teaching at the preschool,  she joined the teaching staff at Talmud Torah.  Students in younger grades eagerly anticipate Nora’s warmth and energy – under her nurturing tutelage, our students’ knowledge of Hebrew becomes firmly rooted as they begin to read prayers.

To contact Nora, email her at gimel.bethelphoenix@gmail.com

Daled Hay ♦ 6th and 7th Grade Class Teacher

Wendy Rozov

wendy_rozovWendy Rozov is thrilled to continue teaching students at Beth El Talmud Torah. She is a 20 year resident of Phoenix, mother of 2 girls, savtah of 3 grandkids and, along with her husband of 35 years, a successful business owner in Phoenix.  She grew up in Philadelphia and is a graduate of Gratz College.  In addition to being a Beth El Talmud Torah teacher, she teaches adult education in religious and secular settings.  Her interests include poetry, Jewish themed comic books, travel, and cooking.  She loves all things Jewish (except maybe jarred gefilte fish) and is excited about bringing her passion to her classrooms. Contact Wendy at wrozov@bethelphoenix.com.