Please Welcome Marissa!

Please join us in in giving a warm Shaloha to our newest OneTable staff member and Hawaii native, Marissa, our new Chicago City Manager!

Shaloha? Please explain.

Growing up in Kailua, Hawaii meant that I was fortunate enough to spend Shabbat near the beach! What I’ve learned from that is the incredible mix of cultures that comes with Hawaiian Island warmth and Jewish hospitality. Shalom + Aloha = Shaloha, or as I like to consider it, my personal way of life. Who doesn’t love a blend of two cultures that live by family values, food as a way to connect and support from all community members?

What brought you to OneTable?

In true Jewish geography fashion, I told a friend from Camp Ramah in California that I had decided to move to Chicago for my next adventure. His response was “You should check out OneTable! It’s a great way to meet people!” He put me in touch with his friend Jonathan, who I now sit next to everyday. What I thought was a “get to know you” phone call quickly turned into an interview and a week later, I was a team member! I’m so fortunate for the way my Jewish network came together for me in that moment, and every moment leading up to it.

Favorite Food?

Every time I visit home, my mom picks up a huge tub of Ahi poke from Costco (#HawaiiProblems) so my favorite food is Shoyu Ahi Poke, best served after a long flight over the Pacific Ocean at my parents’ kitchen counter (using chopsticks, obviously).

What’s your vision of OneTable Chicago?

I want to create a network of Shabbat hosts that understand the value of conversations with friends around the dinner table. I’ve been inspired by OneTable’s mantra of “ending the week with intention” so I hope to instill that same motivation into the Chicago Jewish community.

Coolest Friday night dinner spot….go.

How can I answer this question?! I’ll do it geographically:
Kailua, HI: The deck at my parents house with my mom’s homemade challah and a cool Kailua breeze.
Seattle, WA: A picnic with friends at Gasworks Park. The way the sunset hits that Seattle skyline is pretty remarkable.
Chicago, IL: Shabbat on a rooftop with plenty of challah to go around. And twinkle lights, obviously.

What makes you happy?

Recently I’ve been really excited about my personal blog where I’ve been reflecting on the good (and bad) in the world. It’s a pretty big adventure that I’m on now that I’m a Chicago resident so I’ve been taking this opportunity to journal and share my realizations! Otherwise, you can find me walking out of a class at The Bar Method or hunting down the perfect iced coffee. CHICAGO, LET’S GO.

Want to learn more about Marissa? Send her a welcome email at And if you’re in Chicago, maybe you can even set-up an iced coffee date too!

OneTable empowers people who don’t yet have a consistent Shabbat dinner practice to build one that feels authentic, sustainable, and valuable. The OneTable community is funded to support people (21-39ish), not in undergraduate studies, and without an existing weekly Shabbat practice, looking to find and share this powerful experience.

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