Melissa Frey brings an impressive background of ethical leadership development and innovative engagement strategies, with a particular focus on Jewish GenZ.
Most significantly, Ms. Frey served as the Director of URJ (Union for Reform Judaism) Kutz Camp in Warwick, New York for twelve years. During that time, Ms. Frey was responsible for the oversight of an American Camp Association (ACA) accredited residential camp that included a dynamic summer leadership program for highly engaged teens, a mainstreamed program for Jewish teens with Autism, and a seasonal retreat business that fostered Jewish community and identity.
Throughout her experiences over the past two decades working in formal and informal Jewish education, Melissa has amassed a track record of building transformative leadership development curricula and deep and intentional Jewish communities. The communities nurtured under her leadership have propelled many of the brightest Jewish talent into meaningful professional and lay leadership roles in the Jewish and secular world.
Reflecting upon those experiences, Ms. Frey notes, “I am most proud of the opportunities I created for college-age staff members to take on substantial leadership roles beyond what they could have imagined. Delivering on the variety of supports they needed, so they could shine and exceed their own expectations, made every day a gift. I can’t think of another place I would want to continue this kind of holy and impactful work other than at Purdue Hillel.”
Lowell Kane has been a leading campus administrator, diversity educator, and LGBTQ Center Director for more than two decades. He currently serves as both Director of Student Engagement and Belonging as well as Director of the LGBTQ Center for Purdue University.
He has been the founding staff member establishing nationally celebrated LGBTQ Centers, inclusive curriculum, and data driven practices at Purdue University and Texas A&M University. His leadership experience includes working directly with diverse communities and grassroots organizations throughout the United States and Europe.
As an alumnus of the Social Justice Training Institute, Lowell has dedicated his work to the pursuit of equity by identifying ways to improve institutional climate and shape the educational experience to be more intersectional and affirming.
In addition to his work in higher education, he has consulted on projects for NASA Johnson Space Center, the RAND Corporation, the Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art, LVMH, PepsiCo, and the Fundamental Rights Committee of the Parliament of Nepal. Born and raised in New York, Lowell enjoys traveling the world, experiencing the arts, spending time with friends, and spoiling his wonderful dog Pippa.
I was born and raised in Evansville, Indiana, about 200 miles south of Purdue. I am finishing a degree in Electrical Engineering Technology and hope to pursue a second in Electrical Engineering.
I heard about Hillel when one of my friends told me that Philip offered free coffee once a week in the Union. As I continued to attend coffee with Philip, I was exposed to more and more of the Jewish lifestyle and its philosophies. This sparked my curiosity, and I began to learn as much as I could. I started attending other Hillel events and Friday night dinners. I was blown away by Hillel’s hospitality and the feeling of family that I experienced during my visits.
Because of my involvement with the setup and cleanup of events, I was offered the Host position for the summer of 2016 to fill a gap between Hosts. Then, when the previous Host graduated and found a job out of state I was offered the position full time. Through this position, I hope to maintain the feeling of hospitality that first impressed me years ago.