Bnei Akiva of North America (BANA) (www.bneiakiva.org) and Yeshivat Torah v’Avodah (YTVA) (www.tvaisrael.org) are excited to announce the hiring of Rav Yair Eisenstock (HaLevi) as rosh yeshiva to work alongside Rav Shaul Feldman, Rabbi Dr. Yehuda Seif, and Rabbi Aaron Bayer in the administration of the yeshiva. He is currently the limudei kodesh principal at Yeshivat Or Chaim in Toronto, but he will begin his recruiting responsibilities next year from North America before joining YTVA full time in 5779.

“We were incredibly impressed by his passion, vision, and alignment with the values of our yeshiva,” says Rabbi Dr. Yehuda Seif, rosh yeshiva and executive director. “YTVA’s steady growth over the past three years, along with Rav Yair’s passion, intensity, and commitment will propel the yeshiva to higher levels, helping it fulfill its vision and impact the future leaders of Klal Yisrael in their commitment to Torat Eretz Yisrael.”

Rav Yair HaLevi received his rabbinic ordination from the Rabbinate of Israel and Yeshivat Hamivtar as well as B.Ed. and M.Ed. degrees in Talmud and Tanach from the Herzog College. Rav Yair taught Gemara at Orot Yehuda (3 years), an Israeli high school, and was the rosh mesivta of grade 11. Rav Yair served as the director of the overseas program at Yeshivat Hesder Otniel. In addition to directing the program, Rav Yair served as R’M to both Israeli and overseas first-year students and taught Gemara, Tanach, and Chassidut. Rav Yair then continued to Yeshivat Orayta (four years), where he served as director of informal education, a rosh mesivta and rosh kollel in the yeshiva. During the summers, Rav Yair has been involved in Bnei Akiva programs and worked with the Kol HaNearim program, which brings volunteers to Israel to organize summer camps for children at risk. He also served in the Infantry Corps in the IDF. Rav Yair and his wife, Tanya, have three children, Ohr-Eitan, Adiel, and Roni Shirat Yocheved.

Rav Yair says, “I have slept, dreamt, and breathed Bnei Akiva since I was four years old. I truly believe that I can help continue Rabbi Akiva’s message through the yeshiva, and show how his message will change our students’ lives as adults. I am fully on board and 100% committed to this endeavor, and from this moment on I will truly be living, eating, and sleeping with YTVA on my mind.”

According to Rav Shaul Feldman, director of Bnei Akiva of the U.S. and Canada and founder of YTVA, “We really appreciate the efforts of Rabbi Seth Grauer, rosh yeshiva/head of school at Bnei Akiva Schools in Toronto, for facilitating this connection and allowing Rav Yair the flexibility to begin pursuing this dream next year. Rav Yair is a dynamic and passionate educator who bleeds Bnei Akiva, and with his help we will mold passionate and educated Religious Zionist leaders for the next generation.”

Yeshivat Torah v’Avodah is a project of Bnei Akiva, the nonprofit Israel-focused Jewish youth organization. Bnei Akiva operates day camps, overnight camps, and synagogue- and school-based informal education programming in 25 cities across North America. Yeshiva Torah v’Avodah offers highly motivated high-school graduates an integrated gap-year experience of Torah study and service in Israel.

For more information about TVA, contact Rabbi Yehuda Seif, Ph.D., rosh yeshiva and executive director, visit www.tvaisrael.org, or e-mail yehudaseif@tvaisrael.org, or call 212-465-6536. 

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