Meet Us


Rabbi Brand

is the founding Rosh Kollel of the Yeshiva University Torah Mitzion Kollel of Chicago and holds the Bobins Family Chair in Community Jewish Scholarship. Rabbi Brand was a member of the Bella and Harry Wexner Kollel Elyon at Yeshiva University, where he received his ordination from its affiliate, Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. Rabbi Brand has served as Rabbinic Assistant at Congregation Shomrei Torah in Fair Lawn, New Jersey. He holds a Master’s degree in Jewish Education from the Azrieli Graduate School of Education and Administration and a B.A. in history from Yeshiva College. He also studied at Yeshivat Kerem B’Yavneh in Israel. He has published several articles on Talmudic topics and edited three different volumes of Jewish scholarship. Rabbi Brand is a founder of Lma’an Achai, a student organization dedicated to the needs of Jews in Israel, including feeding the hungry and supporting victims of terror. He has served as Scholar-in-Residence and directed educational programs in communities across the United States, in Europe and Australia. He and his wife, Nechama, and their children, Chaim, Ilan, Aryeh Mordechai, and Hila Eliana live in Skokie.

Rabbi Kraft

Prior to joining the YU Torah Mitzion Kollel as Rosh Chabura, Rabbi Aaron Kraft was a member of the Bella and Harry Wexner Kollel Elyon at Yeshiva University. He has served as Assistant Rosh Kollel of Y.U.’s Teaneck Summer Kollel and as Rabbinic Intern and Community Jewish Education Project Scholar for Congregation Ahavath Torah in Englewood, NJ. Rabbi Kraft has lectured as Scholar-in-Residence in various shuls throughout the country and has published a number of articles on topics in Jewish law and thought. He holds a B.A. from Yeshiva College, semicha from Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary and is currently pursuing an M.A. at the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies. He and his wife, Lynn, live in Lincolnwood with their five children, Adira, Tani, Eli, Avi and Akiva.

Born and raised in California, Rabbi Frankiel has lived in Colorado, Israel, and, most recently, Columbus, Ohio, where he taught at the Columbus Torah Academy and acted as the NCSY Director. Rabbi Frankiel has attended many renowned Torah institutions, including the Mir Yeshiva, Karlin-Stolin and Rabbi Yitzchok Berkovitz’s Jerusalem Kollel and is excited to bring fifteen years of study and community building experience to the Kollel team here in Chicago. His wife, Shira (née Heching), Chicago-born and Israel-raised is also joining the community as the new kindergarten teacher in Hillel Torah Day School. The Frankeils reside in West Rogers Park with their daughter Shulamit

Rabbi Liss

Joshua Liss was born in Cardiff, Wales in 1987 and grew up there until at the age of 18 he joined Yeshivat Hakotel in the Old City of Jerusalem. Whilst experiencing the Israeli Yeshiva world first hand he decided to make aliyah and join Hesder and remained there for nine years. In this time, Josh received a BEd from Michlelet Lifshitz in Jerusalem and served as a driver/loader in the tank corps. He currently lives in West Rogers Park with his wife, Naomi originally from Holland and their two children Nechemia and Oriyah.

Rabbi Elie Schwartz, originally from Cleveland, OH, attended Fasman Yeshiva High School in Skokie. Following graduation, he spent two years studying at Yeshivat Mevaseret Tzion and a third year in Israel at Yeshivat Kerem B’Yavneh. He subsequently attended Yeshiva University where he graduated cum laude with a BA in Philosophy and completed semicha at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. He is currently pursuing an MA in Medieval Jewish History from the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies. Rabbi Schwartz has served as the Interim Assistant Rabbi at Congregation Ohab Zedek on Manhattan’s Upper West Side, and as the JLIC Fellow at Queens College. He and his wife, Miriam, are excited to move to Skokie and join the YU Torah Mitzion Kollel family.

Rabbi Shafir

Bio Coming Soon

Rabbi Sprung

Bio Coming Soon

Rabbi Mayer Simcha Stromer grew up in Teaneck, New Jersey and attended MTA High School before learning for two years in Israel at Yeshivat Sha’alvim. Upon returning from Israel he spent three years at Yeshiva University where he learned under Rav Yaakov Neuburger and Rav Dovid Hirsch while majoring in Psychology. Rabbi Stromer has been at the NCSY Summer Kollel for six summers and also supervised the Masmidim Program at Camp Kaylie for one year. Additionally, he was a fellow at the Rosenbaum Yeshiva of North Jersey through the Yeshiva University School Fellowship Program where he taught middle school students in a classroom setting. The experience he has teaching Torah in formal and informal settings have played a large role in deepening his passion and excitement for learning and sharing Torah. Rabbi Stromer and his wife Shira, who recently moved to West Rogers Park, are incredibly honored and excited to be part of the YU Torah Mitzion Kollel family.