About

Our Mission

Jew in the City began as a YouTube channel in 2005, to pushback at negative and cartoonish representations of Jews in media. What has developed as a leading voice in the Jewish world, over the last two decades, is a deeper meaning to the name. To be a Jew in the City, is to be able to fully lean into one’s Jewishness with pride and confidence, while engaging with the larger world. While Jew in the City originally harnessed the power of social media to tell a better story about Jews, after discovering that every group, but Jews, had been formally advocating in Hollywood for decades, Jew in the City established the first and only Jewish Hollywood Bureau.

The JITC Hollywood Bureau, launched in 2021, champions authentic and nuanced portrayals of Jews, Judaism, and Israel in the entertainment industry and challenges tropes and stereotypes in media. Our goal is to combat antisemitism by sharing stories of our people, history, culture, and traditions with global audiences and increase understanding and appreciation of Jewish contributions to the world.

I have been reading your articles in Jew in the City after watching several programs on           . I came to your website in a search to determine whether           ‘s shows and documentaries are an accurate representation. Thanks for providing education about your religion and culture. It has helped me have a more balanced view after seeing these shows on           Personally, I have always had a positive view of Judaism because my mother, who was a devout Catholic respected it. She always said that if she wasn’t Catholic, she’d want to be Jewish. Also, I have family friends who are Jewish. But after watching several programs on           , I began to have a very negative view. I have a personal commitment to practice seeking out balanced views whenever any media I consume or am exposed to triggers the “outrageous” button, which is what            has done. I am really disturbed by           ‘s negative portrayal, especially in light of how many attacks there are on Jews. Not everyone is a critical thinker. Today I reached out to            to request that they present a more balanced picture of Jews in their programming.

Our Team

Allison Josephs

Founder and Executive Director

Allison Josephs has been involved in the field of Jewish education for over twenty years and is the Partner in Torah mentor to actress Mayim Bialik. Variety named her as an advocate for inclusivity in the entertainment industry in its 2022 Inclusion Impact Report. Allison has been quoted or written about in numerous publications, including Variety, Newsweek, Daily Mail, Vanity Fair, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, People Magazine, NYPost, Daily News, TMZ, The Daily Beast, and Hollywood Reporter. She has appeared on numerous television and radio networks including CBS, ABC, Chris Cuomo’s News Nation, Fox5, TLC, Associate Press TV, and NPR; her articles have appeared in publications including Variety, The Washington Post, NYPost, Daily News, JTA, Jewish Week, Jerusalem Post, and The Forward.

Pearson Education, the largest textbook company in the world, produced a video segment on Allison’s life for the Judaism chapter of their textbook. She is a sought-after international lecturer who has spoken at Congress  and whose corporate clients include Con-Edison and NYU Langone and hosts a weekly podcast on the Nachum Segal Network. She received her Bachelor of Arts from Columbia University in Philosophy and lives with her husband and four children minutes from the George Washington Bridge.

Cindy Kaplan

Consultant, JITC Hollywood Bureau

Kaplan is an award-winning writer/producer and directed multiple short documentaries for NewGround: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change. She is the co-founder of Hollywood Resumes, a career services business dedicated to entertainment industry professionals and spent 8 years at Endeavor-owned agency Signal Entertainment Marketing, where she executed brand integrations with Disney, Paramount, and other major production partners. Previously, she worked at Kids at Play, where she wrote and produced content for Disney Jr., Yahoo!, VEVO, and Electus, and managed a development slate of reality series. Originally from Brooklyn, she graduated from the Yeshivah of Flatbush and Brandeis University with a BA in American Studies, Creative Writing, and Journalism.

Tammy Friedman

Director of Operations

Tammy started her career in finance, working as a credit analyst in JPMorgan Chase’s middle market group. She enjoyed the team aspect of her job and helping clients achieve their financial goals but lacked passion for the industry. During a long hiatus to focus on her children, Tammy volunteered for a variety of Jewish nonprofits and put her organizational and creative skills to use running her school’s PTA for several years. Tammy enjoys modest fashion, historical fiction and any good food she doesn’t have to cook herself. She earned a BA at Barnard in Economics.

Our Advisory Board

David Baddiel

Is a comedian, author, screenwriter, television presenter and Jewish activist. Following the publication of his bestselling polemic Jews Don’t Count, David has been at the forefront of tackling antisemitism in the media, sport, and more broadly, the political left. The book became the Sunday Times Politics And Current Affairs Book of the Year, 2021 and enjoyed critical acclaim in the UK, Europe and US. He has been invited to speak on antisemitism for audiences in Berlin, New York and around the UK. In 2022, Jews Don’t Count was adapted into a documentary for Channel 4.

David’s varied career spans over thirty years. As a stand-up comedian, he performed to a Wembley crowd of 12500 in the UK’s first ever arena comedy show in 1992 and was credited with turning comedy into “The New Rock n Roll”.

His television credits include creating and starring in The Mary Whitehouse Experience, Newman and Baddiel in Pieces and Fantasy Football. More recently he has created and presented several acclaimed documentaries, including The Trouble with Dad (Channel 4), Confronting Holocaust Denial (BBC2) and Social Media, Anger and Us (BBC2).

David has published nine hugely successful children’s books, including The Parent Agency and The Person Controller, as well as five critically acclaimed adult novels including The Secret Purposes and Time for Bed.

Ginnifer Goodwin

Ginnifer Goodwin is an actress and a Jewish activist. She is best known for her roles in the television series BIG LOVE (HBO,) ONCE UPON A TIME (Disney+,) and WHY WOMEN KILL (PARAMOUNT+.) Film credits include MONA LISA SMILE, WALK THE LINE, A SINGLE MAN, HE’S JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU, SOMETHING BORROWED, and ZOOTOPIA.

Narumi Inatsugu

Is a producer, storyteller, director and editor who has worked on some of the biggest shows in the world, including the Emmys, American Idol, the Super Bowl and The Voice. In addition to his work on those iconic programs, he has been nominated for four primetime Emmys, and has won an ACE award and the IGN award. Narumi was the executive producer on the hit cult movie, Samurai Cop 2, edited MTV Unplugged: Los Tigres del Norte and Friends which won a Latin Grammy, and has produced and edited over a thousand of hours of television for FOX, ABC, CBS, NBC, UPN, HBO and Amazon Prime. Narumi also served as creative director for Fuel TV under the Fox Sports umbrella, leading the development and execution of all creative related promotion, advertising, programming and packaging. He was a driving force in the rebranding of Fuel TV and its launch into Fox Sports. Narumi has always made it his mission to increase awareness of gender and ethnic equality in media. Since 2014, he partnered with The Gurin Company and Hudlin Entertainment to produce the Image Awards for the NAACP since 2014 to award Black excellence, he has continued to push boundaries to create the best content possible. Throughout his entire career, Narumi makes it a priority to donate his time to work with various nonprofit companies. He provides resources and services to help raise money for underprivileged kids and help further their education. He contributes to funds to help minority women explore their creativity and create short films which have ended up in film festivals. In 2016, Narumi started Rumiville Inc, a full-service production company that has produced, directed and edited projects in all genres for every major network and streaming platform. Rumiville is full of diverse talented individuals from all different backgrounds. Narumi has a deep passion for entertainment and storytelling but his biggest goal is to tell the stories of underrepresented voices.

Sharon Lieblein

Artios winning casting director, continues to have an illustrious career spanning over two decades. She was instrumental in discovering such talent as Ariana Grande, Emma Roberts, Lily Collins, Josh Peck, Miranda Cosgrove, Victoria Justice, Elizabeth Gillies, Shameik Moore, and Gabriel Iglesias, among many others. She casts Film and Television projects for different producers and studios through her company Sharon Lieblein Casting.

Upon returning to the independent world of casting, she partnered with Fern Champion. They created Champion/Lieblein Casting, where Sharon frequently worked with numerous producers, networks, studios, and streaming companies on features, TV movies, and pilots/series.

Before partnering with Ms. Champion, Sharon served as Vice President, Casting and Talent Development for Cartoon Network. She oversaw live-action talent and casting for the Studio. She was responsible for identifying, casting, and managing talent appearing in their scripted and alternative live-action projects.

Preceding her years at Cartoon Network, Sharon worked for 13 years at Nickelodeon Networks. She served as Vice President of Talent & Casting and oversaw all live-action casting for pilots, TV series, movies, specials, and promos. Among her many projects were several top-rated shows, including iCarly, Big Time Rush, Victorious, Zoey 101, and Drake and Josh.

Sharon has been an active Casting Society of America (CSA) member since 1995, serving as VP for four years. She has also been a member of the Television Academy since 1996, having served the Academy for 16 years combined. Currently as Vice Chair of the Academy (2022-2024), member of the Executive Committee and the DEIA Task Force. Previously as Secretary and Governor of the Casting Peer Group and Membership Committee Chair. Additionally, Sharon has been Chair and Vice Chair of the Looking Ahead program of the Entertainment Community Fund (fka The Actor’s Fund), serving young performers ages 9 – 18 for over 15 years.

Jonah Platt

A multi-platform creator and performer, working across many different aspects of the entertainment industry. As a writer, Jonah has made people laugh on Fox’s long-running animated hit FAMILY GUY, Mitch Hurwitz’s RUNNING WILDE, NBC’s PARKS AND RECREATION, and Cartoon Network’s ANNOYING ORANGE. He most recently wrote for the short-lived NBC sitcom MR. ROBINSON, starring Craig Robinson. Jonah is currently a co-writer/music supervisor/executive producer of ZOMBO, an undead musical TV adventure. As a Broadway actor, he’s most well known for his recent star turn as “Fiyero” in the Broadway blockbuster WICKED. On television, Jonah most recently appeared in NBC’s critically acclaimed JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR LIVE starring John Legend and the season 9 finale of CURB YOUR ENTHUSIASM. Other favorites include PARENTHOOD, SING IT ON, and the series finale of NBC’s beloved series THE OFFICE. Jonah will also voice a new recurring character, the relentlessly positive “Milton Moss” on an upcoming season of Netflix’s hit animated series, TROLLS: THE BEAT GOES ON.

Jonah is also the former President of Starlight Studios, where he oversaw the development of many different projects, including the animated short COLD FEET, short films BAT MITZVAH CONFIDENTIAL and STEALING SUBURBIA, a commercial for social media giant Snapchat, and the music video for Sage and the Saints’ TAKE ME TO THE SOUTH, directed by Kristen Stewart. He is currently co-producing an unscripted political docuseries with 44Blue Productions, and a bio-musical of Hollywood legend James Dean with Prospect House Entertainment.

Malina Saval

is the Editor-in-Chief of Pasadena Magazine. She spent a decade as Features Editor at Variety, the proverbial “Bible” of the entertainment industry. She has moderated panel discussions at film and music fests globalwide, shepherded the magazine’s Oscar coverage and overseen the magazine’s most influential feature sections such as 10 Screenwriters to Watch, 10 Comics to Watch, Entertainment Philanthropist of the Year and Writers on Writers. For her writing at Variety, Saval has won many Los Angeles Press Club and National Arts & Entertainment Journalism Awards, including four first-place awards for her commentary on Jewish representation in Hollywood; the representation of autism spectrum disorder in television; the representation of teenage mental health in media; and her tribute to Oscar-winning nominated filmmaker Jean-Marc Vallée
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Saval’s anthropological analysis of teenage boyhood culture, The Secret Lives of Boys: Inside the Raw Emotional World of Male Teens was published in 2010 and her essay on writing was included in the bestselling anthology series Now Write! Nonfiction: Memoir, Journalism and Creative Nonfiction Exercises from Today’s Best Writers. Saval has appeared as a featured guest on NPR’s “Talk of the Nation,” the Patt Morrison Show, PBS and CBS Radio and is a board member of the Los Angeles Press Club. She is a graduate of Cornell University and USC School of Cinematic Arts.

Ethan Zohn

Ethan Zohn gives the word survivor a whole new meaning. Winning CBS SURVIVOR: Africa’s 1 million dollar prize, was the springboard to an exceptional life of entrepreneurship, social purpose and advocacy. It was also the prelude to an incredible story, one of perseverance, accomplishment, and enduring spirit in the face of once unthinkable challenges.

Ethan is a former professional soccer player from Lexington MA, winner of the reality television show Survivor Africa, a two-time cancer crusher, sports broadcaster and TV personality, author and co-founder of Grassroot Soccer (GRS). GRS uses the power of soccer and the energy of youth to educate, inspire and mobilize communities to improve health. Over the last 20 years, Ethan has been an important force in driving the strategic direction of GRS and building partnerships that have helped to provide lifesaving education for more than 13 million young people in 60 countries.

In 2011, after twice surviving a rare form of Hodgkins Lymphoma and two bone marrow transplants, Ethan ran the NYC and Boston Marathon. He has since been named a global ambassador for Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, StandUp2Cancer, Lymphoma Research Foundation and AKTIV Against Cancer. The severities of both Ethan’s illness and its treatment, coupled with the debilitating anxiety of his cancer coming back post-treatment, led Ethan to explore cannabis and CBD as a form of palliative care and was named the brand ambassador for Momenta, Trulieve Cannabis’ national wellness brand.

With a thirst for traveling, his TV hosting and charitable work has brought him to over 50 countries, focusing on sports for social good, outdoor adventure, health and wellness. A competitor both off and on camera, this “Jewish Wilderness Icon” returned to reality TV as a contestant on Survivor 40 Winners at War, after also competing on The Amazing Race, Survivor All-Star, Eco-Challenge and Fear Factor among others

Brett Gelman

Brett Gelman is an acclaimed, actor, writer, and comedian whose signature intensity and fearlessness enables him to navigate both comedy and drama. Brett is widely known for his fan-favorite role as Murray Bauman on Netflix’s hit series STRANGER THINGS, as well as the titular role of Martin on the award-winning, acclaimed Amazon series FLEABAG. But the accomplishment Brett is the most proud of is when he was the face of the New York Lotto, in which he played Jewish minstrel character “Little Bit of Luck” and helped the great state of New York trick poor people into gambling.

Help us champion authentic and nuanced portrayals of Jews, Judaism, and Israel in the entertainment industry.