Meet Sara Beitman (Merkaz CT) - Westport Moms

How old are your kids and how long have you lived in Westport/the area? My daughter is 2.5 and we moved to Westport pre-pandemic when my she was born, 2.5 years ago. I grew up in Easton, moved to the city, and am excited to be back in Fairfield County.

How did you end up where you are now in terms of your job, or whatever passion project it is you might be doing? I was working at a big corporation in NYC as a digital marketing project manager for ten years when I decided I needed a change. My last big project was managing a $50M fund that awarded grants to the families of health care workers who died fighting COVID-19. I loved that project, but when it ended, I knew that I didn’t want to stop working on projects that help people. At that point, I decided that I wanted to find a job at a Jewish non-profit doing good in my community. Luckily, I was quickly able to find a job at the Jewish Federation, working on education and family engagement programs. I help to run Merkaz Community High School for Judaic Studies, and we are very excited to be opening a new campus in Westport this Fall. Merkaz is a really cool weekly educational program open to all community teens, grades 8-12. The teens can meet Jewish kids from other towns and congregations and pick fun and interesting classes to take. Merkaz has been thriving in theGreater Bridgeport area for 40 years; I actually attended and loved the program when I was in high school. I want my daughter to attend one day, so selfishly, I’m really happy the program is coming to Westport.

In addition, we run PJ Library, which is a free program that sends Jewish books to any child ages 0-12. We are starting A Jewish Young Families group, that will help us plan PJ Library engagement events. Our goal is to build connections and relationships amongst Jewish young families and do good in the community, by providing experiences that are meaningful and memorable for parents and children.​

What was your best memory from 2021, a strange year we know… Getting to spend a lot time with my daughter while I was working from home during the pandemic.

What is the best show you have recently (binge) watched? How to Get Away with Murder. Not a new show, but I love a good murder mystery.

What is one food you could not live without? Pizza.

If you weren’t doing what you are today, what might your career path might have been? A chef; I love to cook.

If you could travel to one place this next year, where would it be and why? It might not seem that exciting, but I’d like to take my daughter to Pittsburgh and Florida to see family. We decided that we’re going to wait to take my daughter on an airplane until she can get vaccinated so I’m hoping it can happen soon.

Are you a morning person, or a night owl? How does sleep fit into your life? Mornings aren’t my thing. I go to bed too late being a night person, then I have to get up early with my daughter. It’s a vicious cycle.

What thing has surprised you most about being in the suburbs? When we moved to Westport, my biggest concern was where were we going to eat. I’m a big foodie who lived in NYC for ten years. But I was surprised to find a lot of very good food and restaurants here.

What is the first thing you do when you walk in the door after a long day? Get a big hug from my daughter.

At a movie: Candy or Popcorn? Popcorn
Cook or order in? Cook
Cake or Ice Cream? Cake
Iced Coffee or Hot Coffee? Iced
Beach or Mountains? Beach
Puzzle or Board Game? Board Game
Wine or a Cocktail (if cocktail, which one?) Wine
Reading or writing? Reading
Before bed: Social media or book/TV? Social Media
Watch or play sports? Watch
Stay in or go out? Stay in
Comedy or Drama? Comedy

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