Lt. Gov. Visits Crown Heights’ Beis Rivkah

New York State’s Lieutenant Governor Kathleen Hochul was in Crown Heights today and visited its largest private girl’s school, Beth Rivkah, and discussed the importance of private education with school leaders and local activists.


Students in Beis Rivkah high school were honored to host Kathleen Hochul, the Lieutenant Governor of the State of New York, for a meeting with a group of students and learned about the school and its challenges.

Speaking to the students Mrs. Hochul described her humble beginnings from a trailer park in Buffalo, New York, where she credited her good education that enabled her to get involved in local politics, then moving on to being elected to the United States Senate, then Lt. Governor of the state.

Following her address, students posed a number of questions, among them she was asked about how she felt about being a politician in a field dominated by men. She responded that she is currently the only woman in her circle of governor, comptroller and state attorney and that she is proud of her accomplishments.

She was also asked if she was ever discriminated against, which she said she was not and that she believes that it others have and it’s something which must not be ignored.

Following the visit she met privately with school administrators and discussed specific challenges that the school faced – namely money for capitol development for expansion. “I heard you and message received” she said. “I will pass it on, and I don’t make promises that I can’t keep, but I will advocate on your behalf.”

This visit came following the State of the State address in which members of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council were present. Following the address they met with Mrs. Hochul and invited her to come for a tour of the local institutions which she took them up on.

The New York Post saw the visit as a political skirmish, taking place in the backyard if city councilman Jumaane Williams, who recently announced that his challenge of Hochul in the upcoming elections.

“She wants to understand the needs of the Jewish community, particularly in education. We have a large private education network,” said Eli Cohen, executive director of the CHJCC. “It has nothing to do with the election.”

Hochul is a former Buffalo congresswoman who ran as Governor Andrew Cuomo’s running mate in 2014 and said she intends to do so again this year. The governor and lieutenant governor are elected separately.


  • 2. FRIENDS wrote:

    good to see chanina and eli cohen working together with rabbi shemtov and board! mazal tov!

  • 4. Respectfully dressed wrote:

    The girls actually look interested. That must be a first!

    What happened to your arm, Benjy?

  • 5. Refua Shelama wrote:

    Rufua shelama to benji’s arm and Rufua shelama to the Lt. Gov. arm too.
    (Btw she dressed so genius)

  • 6. New CEO wrote:

    The lady in the purple jacket is Larrisa Boaz. The new CEO/Executive director of BR. She was brought in by the board.

  • 7. FRIENDS wrote:

    purple jacket- new ceo of bais rivkah – she will be making decisions in your daughter chinuch- good luck! she is not lubavitch…

    • 8. Respectfully dressed wrote:

      Not being Lubavitch might be a good thing. She probably can’t be manipulated.

  • 9. As Usual wrote:

    Using our precious daughters to further your own political agenda. Shameful!

  • 10. Sad wrote:

    Lady in purple dress is new person brought in to deal with tuition issues.

    The board finds it easy to raise tuition rather the raise funds.

    They needed an outsider to be able to crack down on poor pepole.

    She is known to be a rough not nice person.

    Also a difficult person who fired one of our youngerlight who did collections for tuition but she said he was not tough enough.

  • 11. Moshe wrote:

    the rebbes school has a CEO that is not Lubavitch who’s taking responsibility? Time to open a new school! The community must wake up! If the word on the street is true bais rivkah and the future generations are in deep trouble!

  • 12. Couldn't help but notice wrote:

    It looks like she and Benjy got into a fist fight or something.. Lol lol

  • 13. Zalmen wrote:

    I think the new board has to be transparent and let the community know how much money they fundraised since the threw out rabbi Minkowitz and making believe benji doesn’t exist . Open up the books! In addition the actual amount that was collect via the charidy campaign.
    Personally I have friends that borrowed bais rivkah money for payrolls totalling hundreds of thousands of dollars . Also I’m not sure what kind of vad hachinuch approved actions that were going on during the campagin I think they all have to resign.

  • 14. When the head stinks wrote:

    That’s what happens when Shemtov is allowed tonrun the school with no checks or balances, just a bunch of “yes men”. They couldn’t care less about our girls or their chinuch. Sonsad to the the Rebbe’s Moised in such disrepair.

  • 15. Thank you!!! wrote:

    Thanks to for finally making a platform so the community can comment, and not letting this “new board” sensor it, especially one the truth hurts.

  • 16. to #10 wrote:

    It’s not time for a new school, rather time to wake up realize the damage those people are doing get rid of them as fast as they came in, and lets keep it OUR COMMUNITY SCHOOL

  • 17. Itchi wrote:

    .Someone from the Menachem foundation told me they were involved in the shidduch with the CEO and the board of bethrivah . what is her experience in education or running a school? Why arent parents informed that there is a new CEO ?
    The bottom line is / is bais rivkah more in debt now with the new Board? How does the vad hachinuch allow a CEO that is not Lubavitch make decisions in the rebbes Moised? Is it true that rabbi Shemtov wants to put his son Laizer in Beth rivkah ? I hope the teachers and staff have the same questions?…These are questions that must be answered – and the answers are a direct impact on our children

    the rebbe is the CEO and many people have jobs in Beth rivkah with his Bracha !

  • 18. Sad Times wrote:


    Unfortunately the media only allowed a one sided propaganda campaign, raising the board to honorable heights, while diminishing the respect for the people that put their blood and sweat into the school.

    The board put in a CEO from Flatbush to lead the school, from A-Z, overriding anyone else in the school, including Benjy Stock.

    Very soon ppl will wake up to the bureaucratic school with leadership that have a head without a heart.

    But then again, we are all quiet, letting this group of arrogant ppl, who have money, make the decisions for the rest of the community that doesn’t. We have not challenged them. Have they been voted in by the parent body? has there been any transparency as to who they hired and who they fired? Have they acted according to the standards of our Moisad? Who is on top of them? Who will tell them what is appropriate and what is not? And this is all very important, since most of the board members do not set an example of what I want my children to look like. So who will ensure that the school of our children are run by Chassidishe values? Since money equals power, and very soon many of our core staff will be fired.


    (Or maybe it is already)

  • 19. To Add wrote:

    Just to add about accountability and standards.

    When I received the pushka that was mailed out, and read the note, I was taken aback. The font used the letter “t” that was not curved, like a tzeilim. Even the copy lady in Beis Rivkah would not allow a teacher to copy even a single sheet that doesn’t have a curved “t”. The teacher has to redo the sheet. How much more so when you are sending out a professionally printing paper. Who is approving what is going out? Is there any accountability?

  • 20. To zalmen wrote:

    Never mind that the board placed mortgage on a few of the buildings. And are paying large interest on loans the gave and took from Freinds.

    Ohalei Torah board is now buying a new property for $10.000.000. While this board is looking to sell property’s.

    And this is being done by members of the board wh are in the business.

    What a shame

  • 21. FRIENDS wrote:

    i think crown should do an investigation into whats really going on in bais rivkah! obviously that other site has an agenda #fakenews

  • 23. Anonymous wrote:

    I work in Bais rivkah and I was told not to deposit my pay check because there is no money in the bank this is after the school made 1.3 million ???

  • 25. Not understanding wrote:

    The comments are mostly fake news.
    If mortgages were placed on property by the board, it would be on the the public record and the buildings are free of any new mortgages so we have fake news.
    We hear that the board is charging high interest, has anyone seen the loan pmnt or some docs that is being paid or charged, clearly not, so we have fake news.
    Many have said that the new controller will effect your child’s chinuch, since when does the financial office make chinuch decisions and has the board ever made a chinuch decisions, most likely not, so we have fake news.
    And to all that want to take over from the current board and “take it back”, stop talking and show up to 310 crown st and acctuly do something for the school instead of yapping, roll up your sleeves and get to work, and more importantly bring your check book and pay up your tuition that you ALL most likely owe because you have no respect for your child’s education, all you all collectively want is something for nothing.
    Good shaboss

    • 26. Berel wrote:

      lots of ‘fake news’, sure

      But callousness to poor Jews being behind in tuition payments is fake religion. (Heinlein and Rand)

      The Rebbe supported food stamps.

      Poor Jews care about their children’s education but they are … poor.

      You mentioned shabbos which is the only way to tell from your comment that you are Jewish and not some curious conservative who made it over from Instapundit, which means you likely believe in Divine providence —

      Be thankful you aren’t poor and try to empathize with your poor brethren who legitimately fear their children wont be welcome in a Jewish school anymore.

      You can’t do anything about it but don’t be a donkey.

      Good Shabbos

  • 27. Mendy w. wrote:

    If the board is as transparent as they claim why can’t they show us they did not take out the loans. where there is smoke there is fire, and if poeple in the know claim that the board did take around 12% for their loans I will trust them.
    The board is made up of many poeple who deal in real estate they helped and continue to push the process higher. Parents of the millennial generation cannot afford to live in crown heights. As of now one reason why these parents stayed was the lower tuition rate.
    If I tell you the phone call my cousin received from one of the board members about their tuition amount this year you would think my cousin was a criminal and stealing from their own business.
    This board member luckily only called a few poeple because then he had to go back to work and they hired the ungerman who was now fired.

    These board members might have had mazal in the real estate market, but to run the school it seems they are on the shlumazal side.

  • 28. Not understanding wrote:

    Bottom line
    Without money you can’t have a school,
    All lubavicher schools thoughout america take full tuition, for some reason somehow only in CH it’s expected that the schools will pay the bills out of thin air, the fact is that times have changed and many families that claim that they can’t afford tuition somehow squeeze out 2 vacations a year plus leased cars plus children going for a FULL summer the camp, plus pasach in a hotel, so it’s all a matter of priority, certainly there are family’s that can’t afford tuition and they generally don’t pay at all or pay very little, however most of the community is doing just fine BH and spending freely on things that they feel is necessary.


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