Maris Krauss recently joined the CBE team as our Membership Coordinator. As part of our Engagement Team, Maris is responsible for connecting prospective and current members to the vast offerings of our congregation. A New Jersey native, she moved to Brooklyn to work in the Jewish nonprofit world, formerly working at the Harold Grinspoon Foundation and PJ Library. Since moving here, she has enjoyed learning about all the various Jewish communities NYC has to offer. As a graduate of the Avodah Justice Fellowship and a current JDC Entwine community representative, Maris is passionate about social justice and anti-oppression work, specifically with a Jewish perspective.
Photographed and Interviewed by Nate Jaffe, Communications Associate
“I am inspired by CBE’s rich history in the Park Slope community and its fierce commitment to inclusivity and social justice. It’s what motivated me to pursue joining the CBE team and becoming involved in a deeper way.” – Maris
Nate: How long have you worked at CBE?
Maris: Almost a month!
Nate: Where are you from? If not NYC, how did you get here?
Maris: I was born in Red Bank, New Jersey. It’s a cute little town near the shore, so I grew up going to the beach and having the ocean close by. NYC was always a train ride away and I knew that I wanted to move here eventually.
Nate: What is your favorite part of your job?
Maris: Aside from my lovely (and helpful!) coworkers, it has been really enriching to meet CBE members who put so much time and effort into making this place their home. From volunteering, to serving on the board, to showing up for Shabbat and making new people like me feel welcome, it’s the members who breathe life into this place and make me want to come into work every day.
Nate: What is your favorite family holiday tradition?
Maris: My dad is a phenomenal cook and his latkes are the highlight of every Hanukkah. This past year we got a selection of donuts from a local donut shop and split them up so everyone could try each flavor, and I’m hoping that becomes a tradition as well.
I celebrate Christmas with my mom’s side of the family and for as long as I can remember, we’ve started the holiday with my sister and I opening stockings in my mom’s room. Even though my sister and I are adults now (and she has a child of her own), we still look forward to the fun little surprises in our stockings. I think my mom will be stuck putting these together until we’re at least forty.
Nate: Do you collect anything?
Maris: I have a pretty extensive earring collection. I like to get jewelry when I travel, and I like to wear things that have a story behind them or remind me of a specific memory.
Nate: Aside from necessities, what is one thing you could not go a day without?
Maris: I start every day by sitting down to have my coffee and breakfast while reading or watching something on TV. No matter what else I have going on, I always try to carve out this quiet time for myself in the morning; it’s a necessary part of my day.
Nate: What is your favorite movie, tv show, or book of all time?
Maris: My favorite book changes every few years, but my favorite one right now is Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens.
Nate: If you could host a talk show, who would be your first guest?
Nate: What would be your ideal way to spend the weekend?
Maris: I would have lots of time to cook with friends, take a long walk/run through Prospect Park, get a snack at the farmer’s market, and end the day seeing some kind of show. Ideally it would be 72 degrees and sunny the whole weekend, and I would get ice cream at least once.
Nate: What motivates you?
Maris: I’m motivated by being surrounded by people who care about what they do. I am fortunate to know a lot of really devoted activists, artists, and people who spend their days advocating for others.
Nate: Who inspires you or who is someone you look up to?
Maris: My mom.
Nate: What’s your favorite quote or mantra?
Maris: “And you? When will you begin that long journey into yourself?” – Rumi
Nate: Who’s your go to band or artist when you can’t decide on something to listen to?
Maris: I can usually find a Sara Bareilles song for any mood I’m in.