US Board

Beit Ruth - Susan Ashner

Susan Ashner
Founder and Board Chair

Susan is the Founder, Board Chair and along with her husband Michael Ashner, the spirit behind The Beit Ruth Educational & Therapeutic Village. Susan and Michael’s philanthropic giving and commitment have always centered around education. They founded the Beit Ruth Village for at-risk and vulnerable girls to address a dire need in Israel.

Their commitment to building Beit Ruth has demonstrated that with the right care and education, the fate of at-risk and vulnerable youth can be turned around. Thanks to their vision, conviction and generosity, and to the amazing professional staff, the future of at-risk girls in Israel won’t be determined by their past. Knowing that the need is great, the Ashners remain steadfast in their commitment to growing the Village, expand the services and programs, build more residential facilities, and help more vulnerable girls get the help, counseling, care and education that every child deserves. Susan and Michael live in New York and are the proud parents of four grown-up children.

Beit Ruth - Michael Ashner

Michael Ashner

Michael has served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Winthrop Capital Partners, L.P., a vertically integrated property management firm, since 1996. Mr. Ashner served as the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Winthrop Realty Trust, a NYSE-listed real estate investment trust, from 2004 to 2016.  
Mr. Ashner served as Director and Chief Executive Officer of Shelbourne Properties a group of three publically traded real estate investment trusts, from 2002 until their liquidation in 2004. In addition, he was the Chairman and CEO of Newkirk Realty Trust, a NYSE-listed real estate investment trust, from its formation through its merger with Lexington Realty Trust in January 2007. Thereafter, he served as Executive Chairman of Lexington Realty Trust following its merger with Newkirk Realty Trust from 2007 through 2008. 

Mr. Ashner currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the NorthWell Health System, and the Advisory Board of the Cornell University Program in Real Estate. Mr. Ashner is a trustee and co-founder of Beit Ruth a therapeutic boarding school for 45 “at risk” young women in Israel.
Mr. Ashner holds an AB from Cornell University and a JD from the University of Miami. He resides in Cove Neck, New York.

Beit Ruth - Wendy Silverstein

Wendy Silverstein
Finance Chair

Wendy is President and CEO of New York Reit (NYSE:NYRT). As CEO, Wendy is leading the winding up and liquidation of NYRT.

Previously, Wendy served as Executive Vice President and Co-Head of Acquisitions and Capital Markets for Vornado Realty Trust, one of the largest owners of commercial real estate in the United States. As head of Capital Markets, she was the principal architect of the financing that fueled the growth of Vornado from $3 billion to a $35 billion office. As Co-Head of Acquisitions, Wendy was also responsible for real estate and corporate acquisitions.

Prior to joining Vornado, Wendy spent 12 years at Citicorp where she headed Citicorp Real Estate in the Corporate Debt Restructuring Group.

Wendy earned her Bachelor of Science in Economics, Magna Cum Laude, and a Master of Business Administration with Distinction from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She is also a Certified Public Accountant.

Wendy serves on the Board of Toys R Us, Inc. Alexander’s, Inc. and NYRT, and is an independent advisor to Trinity Church regarding their extensive real estate portfolio. Wendy is very proud to sit on the Board of Directors of Beit Ruth, and is Chair of the Finance Committee. She lives in NYC and Short Hills, NJ, with her husband Scott and their children.

Beit Ruth - Lisa Silverstein

Lisa Silverstein

Lisa is a Senior Vice President of Silverstein Properties, Inc. and oversees the firm's residential real estate portfolio. Ms. Silverstein actively participates in all aspects of residential real estate development from deal evaluation, analysis and pre-development planning to construction, marketing, operations, sales and leasing.

Recent projects include Silver Towers, two 60-story residential towers connected by a six-story base at 600 West 42nd Street, the companion to River Place I, a 40-story, 921-unit tower which opened in 2001. An "80-20" rental project, like its sister building, the 1,359-unit project is one of the city's largest rental buildings and includes a mix of market rate apartments, corporate housing and moderate and low income units. Silver Towers was completed in 2009.

Lisa is also developing the Four Seasons Hotel and Private Residences Downtown, a Tribeca property designed by Robert A. M. Stern Architects. The project is located at 99 Church Street on a site that was formerly the headquarters of Moody's which sold its building to become Silverstein's biggest tenant at 7 World Trade Center, taking 17 stories, or 680,000 square feet of new office space.
A graduate of NYU, Lisa sits on the boards of UJA and the Jewish Community Relations Council of New York. She is a member of the Board of Trustees at New York University. She lives with her husband and three children in Tribeca.

Beit Ruth - Anya Gross

Anya Gross

Anya was a practicing lawyer before becoming an E-Commerce Specialist at Marriott Hotels. As a professional consultant, she has worked for companies in the fields of IT, energy, and trade.

Born in Ukraine, Anya is a graduate of Odessa National Law Academy and served as an Assistant Professor there for three years while working toward her Ph.D. She now calls New York City her home, where she lives with her husband, Etai, and their three children, Eliya, Miriam, and Rina (12, 11, and 7 years old). They are regular visitors to Israel, where many of their family and friends live.

Anya visited the Beit Ruth Village in 2017 and was moved by the love and care given to the girls who reside there. She became motivated by the Village’s mission to heal the most vulnerable girls in Israel’s society so they can look forward to a brighter future. Knowing that Beit Ruth offers a home, education, and life skills to girls who are rebuilding their lives inspired Anya to become involved as a member of the Beit Ruth board.