Our Team

Abigail is currently the Program Coordinator at the Hinda Institute and oversees the Reentry and Family programs. In the last five years, she created the family support group, reentry education program, and expanded casework and counseling services.  She has degrees in teaching, project management, and psychology.

Prior to moving to Chicago, she worked for the federal government in Canada developing and managing training and also taught in diverse Jewish educational settings in Canada and Israel.

Over the last 15 years, she has supported Jewish nonprofits through initiatives like focus groups, fundraising, and new programming. Her background equips her well to manage and grow Hinda’s programs, and she brings an empathetic and holistic approach into her direct service work with clients.

Lauren is our casework supervisor and oversees the operations and development of the case management program. Her caseload consists of reentry clients with substance use disorder, and she co-facilitates our addiction support groups.

As an intentional peer support specialist herself, she manages our peer support certification program. She holds a bachelor’s degree in social work and postgraduate certificate in nonprofit management and is working on master’s degrees in social work and social policy. Her professional background and academic interests are around substance use, homelessness, and micro-macro social work practice integration.

Jay has an associate degree in social sciences and will graduate this year with his bachelor’s degree in psychology and sociology from Ohio University.

Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Jay has firsthand experience with incarceration at the county, state and federal Level and its effects on the individual. His casework specialty is in issues regarding parole, probation and the SO registry.

His expertise in these areas helps our clients as they navigate significant obstacles in employment, housing, and community reintegration following incarceration.

Beth has a bachelor’s degree from Southern Illinois University. She works primarily with our elderly. She has personal experience living with someone with mental illness and also had a close family member incarcerated.

This background equips her well to provide case management to our clients with mental health challenges and co-facilitate of our family support group. Since Beth lives in the Chicago area, she does in-person visits to provide additional support to our isolated clients. 



Peer Support

Hinda is currently training 18 individuals with lived experience in our nine-month reentry peer support specialist certification program. This rapidly developing field has shown effectiveness in its outcomes and provides a unique approach that goes beyond the scope of clinical or case management services.

We have eight of our candidates providing peer support to Hinda clients throughout their training program. We plan to utilize peer support in the long-term for our clients. 



Preferred Partners

For our clients in need of more in-depth psychological support, we have three preferred clinical social workers that we coordinate care with. 

Kyle , MSW, LCSW, earned his master’s degree in 2017 from the University of Illinois at Chicago Jane Addams College of Social Work and has been a Licensed Clinical Social Worker since 2019.

Kyle was a social work intern and staff social worker with Cabrini Green Legal Aid for three years. In 2020, he joined Healing Hurt People Chicago (HHP-C) and is a Trauma Intervention Specialist III. In addition to this work, Kyle joined the Hinda Institute in 2021 to provide trauma-informed clinical case management and intervention.  

Dr. Stephanie Kutzen , PhD, LCSW is an adjunct professor in trauma and addiction at the University of Illinois at Chicago Jane Addams College of Social Work and the Hebrew Seminary in Skokie, Illinois.

She is the founder and director of Employee Consultation Services, a comprehensive human services firm specializing in counseling in the workplace. Dr. Kutzen has expanded her interest and gained expertise in the area of assisting in the reentry issues facing post-incarcerated individuals, their families and children.  

She currently volunteers to provide these services with the Safer Foundation, Adult Transition Center, and Hinda Institute.

Zevi , MSW, RCSWI, is an experienced therapist holding an MSW degree from the Wurzweiler School of Social Work. His past professions include being a Rabbi and educator.  Being a Rabbi for several years has given him a keen understanding of the nuances and challenges of life.

His passion is to bring healing to people who have been through stressful experiences or struggle with mental health issues. His client base includes children, adults, and families using a range of modalities to cater to their unique needs so that they build healthier relationships with themselves and others.

Zevi focuses on creating a safe and comfortable environment for his clients with a big focus on maintaining strict confidentiality.