Shira M. Zemel

Director of Youth Leadership Development

Shira M. Zemel came to the Religious Action Center in 2014 as the Assistant Program Director and now works as the Director of Youth Leadership Development. Shira grew up at URJ Camp Harlam, one of the Reform Movement’s summer camps, where she worked on staff for many summers. She is also a proud alum of the Reform Movement’s high school semester in Israel program, NFTY-EIE. Shira is a member of Temple Micah in Washington, DC.


A Washington area native, Shira earned a Master’s degree in Education from SUNY University at Buffalo and a post-Master’s in Special Education from Buffalo State College. Shira graduated from Goucher College in 2009 with a Bachelor’s degree in English literature and Judaic Studies. As a student-teacher in a Buffalo city public school, Shira witnessed firsthand the economic inequity at play in the United States and was impassioned to commit her work to social justice.