Nehama holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Emory University, Rabbinic Ordination from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and a Ph.D. from the Jewish Theological Seminary. She had been a community rabbi and now serves as an educator and consultant with a focus on non-traditional families. But most important are her four children, who were adopted domestically and internationally: Elie, Eliyashu, Ezra and Sima.
James, a long-time LGBTQ rights activist, is Chief Development and Communications Officer at Keshet, the national organization working for LGBTQ equality in Jewish life. James was honored as a 2017 Combined Jewish Philanthropies “Chai in the Hub” Award and is a Senior Fellow of the Charles and Lynn Schusterman Family Foundation. He earned his B.S. in communications from the University of Miami. James is Abba to two wonderful young men, and a Finnish Spitz.
Bruce has a BA from Indiana University and Rabbinic Ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He worked for the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs (JCUA), a Jewish social justice organization dedicated to empowering Chicago’s diverse communities and is now a longtime congregational rabbi. He is a leader in the Shut Tornillo Down Coalition, to close the child immigrant prison outside of El Paso. Bruce and his wife, Rona, have three sons.
Willie has appeared in over 300 episodes of television, over 70 films as well as continual theater productions. He trained at The Actors Institute In New York, and has a BA from Wesleyan University. Willie is involved with many charities, especially The Alliance for Children's Rights, which facilitates adoptions in LA County. Adoption has a special place in the Garson family, as Willie adopted his son Nathen in Los Angeles in 2010, and has twice served as National Spokesman for National Adoption Day.
Tiffany is a comedian and actress. While growing up in foster care in South Central Los Angeles, her excessive talking and imaginary friends prompted her flustered social worker to steer her into stand-up comedy by enrolling her in the Laugh Factory’s Comedy Camp, a place for at-risk and underprivileged children to transform negative energy into something positive. The experience was just the beginning of her illustrious comedy career.
Lakshmi is a software engineer and an author. She has an MBA from LeBow College of Business, a Certificate in Creative Writing from Simon Fraser University and completion of the summer intensive Yale Writers Workshop. Lakshmi is the author of a blog on parenting and adoption and of the children's book, "Why Is My Hair Curly?". Her family is the subject of the upcoming documentary, “Our Daughters.” Lakshmi and her husband are parents by adoption and biology.
Mike is a technology CFO and Partner in a Venture Capital firm, with a past in auditing. He received his BBA degree from the University of Iowa and the Masters of Management degree from the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management. Michael is a licensed CPA, and a Business Management Professor at the Lake Forest Graduate School of Management. Michael and his wife, Beth, have two daughters who joined their family through adoption from South Korea, and one birth son.
Danny is the Director of Operations & Finance for Safe Horizon’s Streetwork Programs, providing services with homeless and street-involved young people. He has a BBS and an MA from Hardin-Simmons University and an MSW from Hunter College in New York. Danny resides in Manhattan with his husband, Pete. In August 2000, Danny found an abandoned newborn in the subway. That infant became their son, who is now in thriving in college and loves playing ultimate.
Yoshi graduated from Princeton University and holds Rabbinic Ordination from the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR). He is Senior Rabbi at the Stephen Wise Temple in LA, a lecturer at HUC-JIR, and a Senior Rabbinic Fellow of Jerusalem’s Shalom Hartman Institute. He is the volunteer Founding Director of Kavod, a non-profit dedicated to protecting human dignity. He is the first board member of Second Nurture. He and his wife, Jacqueline, have three daughters.
Second Nurture's mission is to radically increase the number of families who choose to foster and adopt waiting children and teens, and do so successfully.
We help you explore, pursue and thrive in fostering and adoption by mobilizing your community to support you every step of the way.
Personal, Communal and Social Responsibility:
We are all responsible for one another. The well-being of children, families, communities, and society are mutually reinforcing and must be cultivated toward empathy, love and strength. We partner with courageous, visionary, and open-minded communities that choose to prioritize the needs of children.
Learning and Agility:
We seek best professional practices to live our values, and listen to each family and community to understand their unique needs and benefit from their wisdom.
Expertise and Collaboration:
Our work leverages the expertise of existing professionals and organizations as well as the skills of the membership, and the wisdom of our families.
We seek sustainable organizational diversity. And our partnerships support families regardless of parental marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, race, religion, class or physical abilities.
Founder and Executive Director, Susan Silverman grew up in a family that fostered older children, and getting to know kids without a permanent, loving family of their own had a big impact on her. Now, she and her spouse have five children, three were born to them and two were adopted. She is the author of a memoir, Casting Lots: Creating a Family in a Beautiful, Broken World and has been featured in the New York Times, NPR, BBC, ABC, and more. Susan has a BA from Boston University, an Ed.M. from Harvard University, and an MA and Rabbinical Ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion.
Talia has been with Second Nurture for three years. She started as a volunteer and very quickly realized that her passion for the important work that Second Nurture does would become her career. Talia has a varied professional background, working as a writer, memorial counselor for families who’ve lost a loved one, as well as private investigator. Her most longed for role—mother—was officially achieved last year when she adopted her son through the LA County foster system. As a foster parent and now adoptive parent, Talia understands the many complexities of the Los Angeles County foster care system, and has the tools and drive to help other foster families navigate both the system and the many ups and downs of being a foster parent. Growing up in the close-knit Jewish Tucson, Talia knows the power and importance of a community. Doing the sacred work of helping families within those communities fulfill their desires to foster and adopt is a dream job for her.
Suki has been working with social justice, advocacy and youth development nonprofits for over ten years. Her expertise lies in finance, development, research, and operations. Suki took a circuitous route to nonprofit work starting her professional like as a Dietitian at the University of California, San Francisco then as an investigator, working both as a private investigator and then for the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office. In the mid-2000’s Suki transitioned her career to work with nonprofits, first in operations and finance and then in institutional giving. Suki lives in Northern California and holds a Bachelor’s of Science degree.
Dave Thomas Foundation For Adoption
Social Service Partners
Second Nurture was founded in 2017 by Susan Silverman. After meeting hundreds of people in dozens of cities in the US and Canada while touring with her book, a memoir about her family and adoption, she became convinced that many more people would foster and adopt if they had direction, fellowship and support.
Soon after, Susan met Talia Green and Suki McCoy. The three of them, financed by visionary individual donors, teamed up to actualize the dream.They began with a pilot program in partnership with Rabbi Susan Goldberg, then of Wilshire Boulevard Temple. Soon, they cultivated an ever-growing cohort of fostering and adoptive families, with the wider congregational membership providing on-going support in expected and unexpected ways.
Proof of concept in hand, they acquired initial funding to expand to new communities in LA County. They identified ten communities to approach, hoping to enlist at least two or three. When nine of the ten excitedly joined in partnership to promote and support fostering and adopting among their memberships, the team jumped into action to further professionalize and streamline so that Second Nurture would be readily scalable. Now, with growing cohorts throughout LA County, they plan to expand their staff and resources to continue exponential growth, and get many more kids out of foster care and into loving families who are, in turn, held by their loving communities.
Second Nurture is honored to work alongside individuals and organizations who are creating meaningful change for children and families.
Jen is happy to help the team at Second Nurture with all the important functions that keep operations running smoothly. She is dedicated to working for health equity and social justice and is co-founder and director of a non-profit wellness center called Community Well in San Francisco. She is also a healer, holistic massage therapist, birth doula and adoptive mom in an open adoption.