JFS sees people’s needs as an opportunity to help. We know that the face of opportunity is not always what you would expect. The family looking for assistance today will be the family helping to provide others with insights and support tomorrow. JFS is here for all.

Our Mission:

Jewish Family Services of WNC strengthens
the community by empowering individuals and families
through programs and services guided by Jewish values.

Our Vision:

A community in which individuals and families
have the resources to reach their full potential.

Our Values:

Respect for each person’s dignity

Helping people to help themselves

Social responsibility—we are all responsible for one another

Maintaining the highest ethical standards to be worthy of the community’s trust

Alison B. Gilreath, MSW

JFS Executive Director

Alison has had a 30+ year career in start-up and other organizations in Connecticut, Boston, Los Angeles, and since 1992, here in Asheville, NC.


Anne Wainer, MSS, LCSW-A

JFS Social Worker/Case Manager; Elder Club Supervisor; Psychotherapist

Anne is a 7 year Ashevillian, relocated from Philadelphia and grateful to be back to her roots working as a social worker serving a diverse population at a time of great growth at this agency. 


Christina Jacob, MSW, LCSW

JFS Licensed Clinical Social Worker-Psychotherapist

Christina has lived in West Asheville for almost 20 years. She is originally from West Virginia and has lived in several other states on the East Coast since college. She has also traveled and lived abroad.


Deborah Wood, MSW, LCSW

JFS Licensed Clinical Social Worker-Psychotherapist

Debbie has had the opportunity of living in Puerto Rico, New York, and California. She is now settled with her family in Asheville NC, and close to her aging father. Her work experience started in the military when she joined the US Coast Guard and completed four years.


Nicole Peirolo

JFS Elder Club Facilitator (Asheville & Hendersonville)

Nicole comes to Jewish Family Services after spending over 20 years involved in Mental Health and Human Services, working in Connecticut, Florida, and North Carolina treatments centers and therapeutic group homes. 


Elizabeth Drake                                    

JFS Staff Accountant

Liz is a native of Chicago who moved to the Asheville area in 2003.  She received a BS in Resource Conservation and a JD from the University of Florida


Judy Avalon                         

JFS Administrative Assistant

Judy is our JFS Administrative Assistant, providing administrative support to staff members, programs and agency operations, and greeting our clients and visitors when they call or come into the office. 


Debbie crane                         

JFS Licensed Clinical Social Worker-Psychotherapist

Debbie grew up within the (small) Jewish Community in Wichita, Kansas and earned her MSW from the University of Kansas. She has many years of experience in helping people through challenging times.


Rachel Miriam Kalin                        

JFS Chef/Kitchen Manager

Rachel relocated to Asheville in 2016 from the greater Fort Lauderdale area. She graduated with a degree in Culinary Arts from Johnson and Wales University (Miami) in 2014 after deciding to leave the field of Urban and Regional Planning, where she sat stationary for the most part of five and a half years dreaming of what to cook for dinner.


2019 Board of Directors

Belinda Brandon, President

Michael Dulion, Vice President

Ken Tannenbaum, Vice President

Debra Bergman, Secretary

Stacy Feldman, Treasurer


Gaia Goldman

Sandra Layton

Harvey Morse

Jacob Blass

Rosemary Dehlow

Jonathan Freedberg

Honorary Members

Rabbi Justin Goldstein

Rabbi Rachael Jackson

Rabbi Batsheva Meiri

Rabbi Shaya Susskind

donor information

Corporate Sponsors, Funders, and affiliations

Springfest 2018 Sponsors

2017 donors

2018 donors