Meet Our Leadership

Gary joined FHJC over 20 years ago when he married Rae.  Coming from a large, conservative congregation on Long Island, where he served as Financial Secretary and then Treasurer, Gary quickly became involved in many activities and events at FHJC and was asked to join the Advisory Board and then the Board of Trustees.  Using the skills  gained during a 45-year career in engineering program management, Gary  helped organize the marching contingent in the annual Celebrate Israel parade and served as chair of the Security Committee, where he recruited over 20 volunteers to conduct security sweeps.  Rae and Gary are faithful attendees at weekly in-person minyanim and at Shabbat services, where he has the pleasure of welcoming each person as they enter the Sanctuary and giving out candy to our Adon Olam singers.  Gary is honored to serve as president of FHJC.  


Richard Chase has been a member of the Forest Hills Jewish Center for more than 15 years.  He served as Vice President of Education twice, from 2015-2018, and again since June 2023.  He has also served as Vice President of Membership from 2021-2023, as well as co-chair of the School Board and a member of the Board of Trustees.  He has also served on various committees at FHJC.

Professionally, Richard is a Court Attorney for the Honorable Carmen R. Velasquez in the Supreme Court, Queens County and previously worked for two other Judges.  He was also a member of the Law Department in the Supreme Court, Queens County.  Richard has also taught in the paralegal program at Queens College and the Legal Studies Department at Nassau Community College.  Richard and his wife, Nancy, reside in Forest Hills with their 16 year-old twins, Jacob and Abby, who have attended the FHJC Nursery School, Religious School and are currently enrolled in Hebrew High School at FHJC.

Mitchell Frank headshot

Mitchell Frank and his wife, Lari, have been members of FHJC for about twenty five years; their sons, Eric and Max, had their bar-mitzvahs here. Mitchell is a semi-retired clinical psychologist with graduate degrees from Hebrew University in Jerusalem and Yeshiva University in New York. He served in the IDF, worked as a psychologist with children and families in Israel, and subsequently in both forensic and clinical settings in New York. A lover of poetry and of the Hebrew language, Michell has enjoyed leading the Hebrew Literature Group at FHJC. He is proud to have recently published an article, Lenegdi: Being in Relation, in the Winter, 2024 edition of JTS’s scholarly journal, Masorti: The New Journal of Conservative Judaism. 

Zach Wichter is the Vice President of Membership and has been a member of FHJC since 2017. He helps organize Pride Shabbat and co-chairs SURJE (Standing Up for Racial Justice and Equity, FHJC’s social justice committee). Zach is a professional travel journalist and enjoys rock climbing and taking care of his two cats, Latke and Ganef, in his free time. 


Suzanne had been a member of the Forest Hills Jewish Center for approximately the last 23 years. She and her husband Jonathan joined when their daughter Rachel started Nursery School. Suzanne became involved almost immediately through the Parents’ Association. First in Fundraising. The Book Fair was “her thing.” After several years she became the PA President. Later on Suzanne was on the School Board and also served as a Co-Chair of the School Board. Suzanne met some of her closest friends through the Parents’ Association and they are still close friends. Her daughter is still very close with the kids that she met in Nursery School and went through Religious School, B’nei Mitvot and Hebrew High School together. Now Suzanne is honored to be on the Executive Board as the Secretary.

Preston Forman headshot

Preston Forman has been the synagogue treasurer since June 2023 and a Board of Trustee member since 2020. A native of Taunton, Mass., Preston has lived for more than 25 years in Forest Hills with his wife Tami, daughter Madeline, and son Sam. He currently is a certified financial planner and previously was a technology editor and newspaper reporter.

He earned the rank of Eagle Scout as a youth. 


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