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Amy Arnold, Office Administrator

Amy is a descendant of one of the founding Ashkenazic families of Ahavath Achim Synagogue who settled in Atlanta from Russia in the late 1800s. She attended Religious School at AA where she became a Bat Mitzvah and was confirmed and graduated. Amy studied psychology and film criticism as an undergrad at UGA, earned a Masters in Counseling Psychology at Georgia State, and moved to Washington, DC to continue her graduate studies at The George Washington University. At GW, Amy obtained certificates in publishing and public relations.

 

While in DC, she was employed at Kiplinger Editors for 17 years where she was a researcher, fact-checker, reporter, writer, and assistant editor. Her last five years at Kiplinger, she was Assistant to Chairman Austin Kiplinger. Amy returned to Atlanta in 2005 to be closer to her family. There, she worked as an Assistant to CEOs and other C-level executives at various companies. She segued from the corporate world to start her own home staging business called The Staging Maven until the day in 2017 she was called by a headhunter at JF&CS to take a job at Congregation Or VeShalom in Brookhaven. 

At OVS, Amy worked as their Publications Coordinator where she especially enjoyed working with many of the families she had grown up with in Atlanta. While at OVS, Amy was active in Sisterhood and increased the OVS social media presence to over 1000 followers. When the administrative job became available at Kehillat Chaim in the summer of 2020, Amy was attracted to TKC's focus on Reform Judaism, social justice and its location in historic Roswell.

Suesan Phillips, Bookkeeper

Suesan was born and raised on Long Island and grew up in a Conservative home where her family was very active in their synagogue including Youth Group activities. She received her B.S. in Phys Ed with a concentration in Sports Medicine from SUNY Brockport in 1986. She worked for the JCC on Long Island for 8 years before relocating to Roswell in 1995. Her commitment to raising Jewish children has kept her closely tied to the Jewish community. After 3 years of being involved with KLUB 345, she believes more than ever that it is never to early to form strong ties with other Jewish children in a social atmosphere.  Suesan can be found during the week in the bookkeeping office. She began her work association with TKC in 2005 teaching in the preschool. Since 2007 she has been a 2nd grade teacher in the Religious School. When the need surfaced to engage our younger students socially, she jumped at the chance to lead KLUB 345. Suesan has witnessed first hand the power of connection through her children Ian (21) and Alexa (16).

 

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Michelle Erste, Director of Religious School and Family Programming

Michelle Erste (nee Shmukler) has been an active member of TKC since her parents joined the congregation in 1989, when she was in 1st grade. She and her husband Lou rejoined in 2007 when they were married. TKC is where she received her Jewish education, became a Bat Mitzvah, was involved in RAFTY’s early days, and held her babies’ naming ceremonies. In 2011, she taught one year of 7th grade before taking a break to have her second baby, returning in 2014 to teach PreK for 4 years. In 2018, she moved to 3rd grade and in 2019, added Hebrew and Theater to her teaching resume! She also served on the Board of Trustees for 2 years and on the Rabbi search committee. 

 

Beyond TKC, Michelle and her husband Lou have two children, Leah, a rising 5th grader, and Gabriel, a rising 3rd grader. In addition to her day job as a Marketing Director for an engineering consulting firm and helping out with her kids’ school PTA, Michelle can be found driving her children to and from dance and soccer practices, volunteering in her industry associations, or reading a book in her favorite hammock in the backyard. The Erste family also includes Daisy the dog and three cats - Harry, Charlie, and Mimi.