From religious freedom to education policy, from economic revitalization strategies to trade policy, the domestic sphere of American policymaking has important implications for America’s future and for the American Jewish community in particular. Tikvah believes in responsibilities of citizenship, and that the Jewish people have a unique perspective to offer to American domestic policy. Many of our fellows have undertaken research projects and internships in the realm of domestic policy, charting new ways forward.
Bella Brannon is a rising junior at UCLA pursuing a major in Public Affairs and minors in Study of Religion and Digital Humanities. Outside of her studies, Bella is the President of Hillel, Editor-in-Chief of Ha’Am, a bass player in the Klezmer Ensemble, and a researcher into bias in artificial intelligence with the School of Technology, Law, and Policy. In her free time, Bella can be found running on the beach, watching Alfred Hitchcock movies, and reading science fiction novels. Bella became involved with Tikvah in high school through the Maimonides Scholars Program and Tikvah Online Academy. Now, she is now a member of the Tikvah College Forum and co-led UCLA’s Tikvah reading group on Chaim Saiman’s book Halakhah: The Rabbinic Idea of Law. As a Beren Summer Fellow, Bella worked with The Jewish Coalition for Religious Liberty to research the development of religious liberty in three key areas: Free Exercise from Smith to Fulton, Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, and Lemon and the Establishment Clause.
Alexandra Orbuch is a Junior at Princeton University majoring in History with minors in Jewish Studies, Near Eastern Studies, History and the Practice of Diplomacy, and Creative Writing. She serves as the Editor-in-Chief of the Princeton Tory, the University’s journal for conservative thought, and writes for a host of other campus publications including the Princeton Legal Journal and Nassau Weekly. Alexandra has also been published in national publications including the Washington Free Beacon, The Algemeiner, and The Jewish Journal. Alexandra’s interests lie at the intersection between law and politics. In that vein, she previously interned in the offices of Sen. Tom Cotton and Rep. Kevin McCarthy and worked on the communications team for Gov. Ron DeSantis’ most recent gubernatorial campaign. As a Beren Summer Fellow, Alexandra interned at The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty, where she focuses on the legislative affairs and communications aspects of the firm’s religious liberty work.
Alex Lucero is a Senior at George Washington University, where he studies economics and political science in the University Honors Program. Alex has interned for AIPAC’s Policy and Government Affairs Department as a research assistant to the organization’s national defense lobbyist. He is a member of the Sigma Chi Fraternity and the Phi Alpha Delta Pre-Law Fraternity. He also volunteers as treasurer of GW’s Camp Kesem, which provides community and support to children through and beyond their parent’s cancer. In his hometown of San Diego, California, Alex worked as a Hebrew school teacher throughout high school. He stays involved with his local DC Jewish community by tutoring Hebrew at a local synagogue. Alex hopes to attend Law School and practice as an Attorney. As a 2022 Beren Summer Fellow, Alex worked with a group to created four different lesson plans that each use Halakhic sources to explore the core questions underlying economics from a distinctly legalistic lens. These lesson plans included the topics of the competing values of work and leisure; definitions of ownership and liability in property law; the nature of arbitration and how the Jewish tradition approaches distributive justice. The final goal of this project is to take the ideas presented in these lessons and spark the interest of investors, academics, and students to bring about an academic conference centered around these ideas.
Yuval Levin is the director of Social, Cultural, and Constitutional Studies at the American Enterprise Institute (AEI). He also holds the Beth and Ravenel Curry Chair in Public Policy. The founding and current editor of National Affairs, he is also a senior editor of The New Atlantis and a contributing editor to National Review.
Dr. Levin and scholars in the Social, Cultural, and Constitutional Studies research division study the foundations of self-government and the future of law, regulation, and constitutionalism. They also explore the state of American social, political, and civic life, while focusing on the preconditions necessary for family, community, and country to flourish.
Dr. Levin served as a member of the White House domestic policy staff under President George W. Bush. He was also executive director of the President’s Council on Bioethics and a congressional staffer at the member, committee, and leadership levels.
In addition to being interviewed frequently on radio and television, Dr. Levin has published essays and articles in numerous publications, including The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and Commentary. He is the author of several books on political theory and public policy, most recently “A Time to Build: From Family and Community to Congress and the Campus, How Recommitting to Our Institutions Can Revive the American Dream” (Basic Books).
He holds an MA and PhD from the Committee on Social Thought at the University of Chicago.
Rabbi Mitchell Rocklin
Rabbi Dr. Mitchell Rocklin is Director of the Jewish Classical Education Concentration track at the University of Dallas and the academic director and dean of the Lobel Center for Jewish Classical Education. His prior work on Jewish Classical Education as a research fellow with Tikvah was featured in the Wall Street Journal. He received his Ph.D. in history from the CUNY Graduate Center, held postdoctoral fellowships at Princeton University and Yeshiva University, and taught at both CUNY and Princeton. He is also a chaplain in the Army National Guard with the rank of Major. Rabbi Rocklin is also the president of the Jewish Coalition for Religious Liberty, as well as a member of the Rabbinical Council of America’s Executive Committee and Military Chaplaincy Committee. Prior to his work at Tikvah, he served as a congregational rabbi in Connecticut. His writings have been featured in publications including The Los Angeles Times, National Review Online, The Daily Wire, The Forward, The Public Discourse, and Mosaic.
Howard Slugh is a founder and General Counsel of the Jewish Coalition for Religious Liberty. He is also an attorney in Washington, DC focusing on constitutional law. His writings have been published in National Review Online, The Weekly Standard, The Daily Wire, The Baltimore Sun, The Public Discourse, The American, American Thinker, and other media.
Yehoshua (Jason) Bedrick is director of policy at EdChoice. Previously, he was a policy analyst with the Cato Institute’s Center for Educational Freedom. He also served as a legislator in the New Hampshire House of Representatives and was a research fellow at the Josiah Bartlett Center for Public Policy, where he focused on educational choice. Bedrick received his Master’s in Public Policy, with a focus in education policy, from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He also holds a B.A. in Religious Studies from the Rabbinical College of America and a B.S. in Business Administration from Babson College.
Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik
Yeshiva University and Congregation Shearith Israel
Rabbi Dr. Meir Y. Soloveichik is director of the Zahava and Moshael Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought at Yeshiva University and the rabbi of Congregation Shearith Israel, the oldest Jewish congregation in the United States. Rabbi Soloveichik has lectured throughout the United States, in Europe, and in Israel to both Jewish and non-Jewish audiences on topics relating to Jewish theology, bioethics, wartime ethics, and Jewish-Christian relations. His essays on these subjects have appeared in the Wall Street Journal, Commentary, First Things, Azure, Tradition, and the Torah U-Madda Journal. In August 2012, he gave the invocation at the opening session of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida. He is the son of Rabbi Eliyahu Soloveichik, grandson of the late Rabbi Ahron Soloveichik, and the great-nephew of the late Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik.
The Tikvah Fund
Dr. Jonathan Silver is the senior director of Tikvah Ideas, where he is also the Warren R. Stern Senior Fellow of Jewish Civilization. The editor of Mosaic, he is also the host of the Tikvah Podcast on which he has hosted hundreds of writers, rabbis, educators, military officers, artists, and political figures, including members of Israel’s Knesset, the U.S. Senate, and the prime minister of Israel.
Associate Director, University Programs