Did you travel on a BBYO mission to Israel in high school? Or maybe you attended a convention? Or perhaps you participated on one of the local boards? If so, meet Stacy Heller— she’s transitioned her childhood BBYO membership into a full time career.
If you knew Stacy back in college, you might have expected to see her on TV since she majored in broadcast journalism. Instead, Stacy “choose the Jewish route”— giving back to her community— BBYO. Today, Stacy is the BBYO Director in Chicago of the Great Midwest Region.
While Stacy’s job keeps her very busy, she says she’s wakes up everyday excited to go to work for an organization that gave her so much as a child. Stacy oversees and runs the entire BBYO program, including: working with its regional boards and helping to develop them into strong leaders, planning all of the regional conventions and programs, supervising the Young Friends and Alumni Network (FAN), acting as a liaison between the regional office and BBYO's international office and recruiting and promoting for BBYO summer programs.
Stacy still finds free time to go out with her girlfriends on Saturday nights or to stay in to host Shabbat dinner parties. So if you enjoy a good home cooked meal, participated in BBYO back in the day, or have a penchant to fly around the world, then Stacy Heller is a Jew You Should Know!
1. What is your favorite blog or website?
Groupon- they have great deals!
2. If time and money were limitless, where would you travel?
That's easy, I would book an around the world ticket so that I can see it all.
3. If a movie was made about your life, who would play you?
Definitely Debra Messing.
4. If you could have a meal with any two people, living or dead, famous or not, who would they be? Where would you eat or what would you serve?
First, I would eat with my grandmother who I never had the chance to meet. We would eat a traditional, home-cooked, Jewish dinner together right here in my apartment. It would include matzo ball soup, chicken, potatoes, veggies and of course a delicious dessert. We would sit, relax and talk for hours!
The other person I would want to have a meal with is Tom Cruise. He's always been one of my favorite actors. We would definitely go for sushi at one of Chicago's great sushi restaurants!
5. What’s your idea of the perfect day?
Waking up, watching the TODAY Show over a cup of coffee, checking email and seeing what else is going on in the world. Eventually, I would go to the gym, work and then come home to a good home-cooked dinner. If it were the weekend I would get together with my girlfriends for a fun girls dinner and night out!
6. What do you love about what you do?
I love the fact that I wake up every day excited to go to work. Working for BBYO has been a wonderful opportunity for me. I love providing BBYO teens with meaningful Jewish experiences and knowing that I am helping shape and develop our next generation of Jewish leaders. I was a member of BBYO when I was in high school, so I enjoy giving back to the organization that has done so much for me.
7. What job would you have had if not the one you have now?
I would probably be a news reporter/anchor. I graduated undergrad with a broadcast journalism degree and spent a few semesters interning at CBS in Orlando…when I graduated I just happened to choose the Jewish route.
8. What’s your favorite Jewish thing to do in Chicago?
Host Shabbat dinner parties in my apartment and eat a good burger from Ken's Diner in Skokie!