Jun 30, 2015

Behind the Scenes: Gabriela Demby (The Team)

by Gabriela Demby

A project of such an enormous magnitude requires a number of dedicated dreamers working behind the scenes.

The Chief Rabbi of South Africa, Rabbi Warren Goldstein, had an exciting vision of creating a unity project for South African Jewry in 2013. After approaching an incredible creative talent, Laurence Horwitz, owner and creative director of Mama Creative - a creative studio based in Norwood Johannesburg, Rabbi Goldstein’s dream was on its way to becoming a reality. The Shabbos Project was born, and was carefully given into the hands of the Mama Creative team to bring to life.

The team at Mama Creative are comprised of some twenty individuals from strategic and creative backgrounds. The Shabbos Project headquarters sits comfortably within the Mama Creative studio, affording seamless interaction with the designers, copywriters and videographers of the studio.

Countless brainstorming meetings and in-depth discussions and debates gave way to creating a project that has truly inspired the world: The International Shabbos Project.

As creative director and owner of Mama Creative, Laurence Horwitz oversees all aspects of the project. Laurence is unique in the fact that he is very involved in all projects that his studio tackles, he is much more than just the boss. Laurence can often be found working on creative collateral for the project behind one of the many design screens.

Laurence provides an unlimited amount of inspiration, creative and strategic input. He is extremely dedicated to the cause and offers a warmth that ignites a passion in each and every person working on the project.

Rosy Hollander is the project manager for The Shabbos Project. Rosy’s main task is to ensure that everything gets done. Rosy’s role is twofold: On the one hand, Rosy discusses all marketing and strategy decisions with Laurence and the Chief Rabbi. Rosy then communicates these decisions with the rest of the team and ensures that they are actioned and implemented. On the other hand, Rosy works intricately with the team on the ground. In turn, she provides feedback to Laurence and the Chief Rabbi regarding all progress of The Shabbos Project.

The incredibly capable Malki Connack has worked tirelessly on the new and improved Shabbos Project website. Malki also deals with translations of all Shabbos Project material for all languages, communication with our thousands of partners around the world and coordinates the research, content and all material that The Shabbos Project produces.

Keren Finger is the social media manager for The Shabbos Project. This means that any buzz you see or read about online regarding The Shabbos Project goes through Keren.

In addition to social media, Keren works alongside Malki on development of the website, while also dealing with partners and helping with distribution.

Nicole Knopp works together with The Shabbos Project partners and deals with all communications. Nicole is working on our backend salesforce which will act as a global platform to utilise, store and manage all resources and information.

Gilah Orelowitz is our inhouse Israeli. Gilah is a partner liaison, which means that Gilah communicates with all new and existing partners around the world, helping them to get started, and assisting them with anything they might need.

Amongst many other projects, Yisroel Glass works passionately on all content and programming for The Shabbos Project. Yisroel also takes a very hands-on approach when it comes to distribution for The Shabbos Project, absolutely nothing is too much for Yisroel.

Orr Koren is the talented videographer for The Shabbos Project. Orr spends hours compiling and perfecting the touching videos that millions of people around the world view daily.

The project would not be complete without the incredible branding and language that the creative studio creates.

The creative studio is comprised of a number of creative thinkers. Alexa Scola is Laurence’s right hand woman. She manages the creative team and deals with all Mama clients. Alexis Sirakis is the senior studio manager and designer. Her team is comprised of a group of designers and copywriters. The design team includes some exceptionally talented people: Tanya Page, Storm Pandaram, Angela Anderson, Lisa Napier and Mikhael Cohen while the creative copywriting team includes Simon Apfel, Tracy Essers and Gabriela Demby.

This ongoing project presents new challenges and opportunity as it grows, ensuring that The Shabbos Project team is constantly kept on their toes.

Chief Rabbi Warren Goldstein and the Mama team are literally changing the world, one Shabbat at a time.

Gabriela Demby

Gabriela has never met a cup of tea she didn’t like. This writer is a novelist in the making, and has her sights set on bringing back a true appreciate for the written word. Gabriela is also a make-up artist and has a burning passion for reading, writing and travelling. Gabriela loves all things colourful, and draws a lot of inspiration from the people she surrounds herself with. Her over-active imagination combined with her background in creative brand communications has lead her to a career in creative writing and conceptual thinking.

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