The Be’chol Lashon Rabbinic Circle includes rabbis from all denominations and backgrounds who support the mission of Be’chol Lashon to grow and strengthen the Jewish people by advocating for a global vision of peoplehood that reflects contemporary identity.
Members of the Rabbinic Circle are committed to: 1) Welcoming individuals of all racial, ethnic and cultural backgrounds into their communities and congregations, and 2) Lending the voice of their rabbinate to our message of inclusion and a 21st century vision of global peoplehood.
Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder
Atlanta / Education Director, Be'chol Lashon
Rabbi Ruth Abusch-Magder Ph.D., Be’chol Lashon’s Education Director and a Rabbi-in-Residence, has been involved in Jewish education and leadership for over 30 years. A graduate of Barnard College, she received her doctorate from Yale University and was ordained at Hebrew Union College. The recipient of many grants and fellowships for her work on Jewish food and women’s history, in 2006 she was a Jerusalem Fellow at the Mandel Leadership Institute in Jerusalem. A CLAL Rabbi Without Borders fellow, she is a frequent writer and teacher and has taught and published throughout the world. She edits Be’chol Lashon’s Jewish& publication.
Rabbi Barbara Aiello
Ner Tamid del Sud (Sarasota, FL)
Rabbi Barbara Aiello was appointed Italy’s first woman rabbi in 2004 and continues to serve as Italy’s only modern, liberal rabbi who lives and works in Italy. She continues to serve Jews throughout Europe as a spokesperson for Pluralistic Judaism – a movement that deliberately blurs denominational lines and extends the hand of Jewish welcome to Jews of all backgrounds.
Rabbi Barbara Aiello was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and is the daughter of a liberator of the Buchenwald concentration camp. She is a graduate of Indiana University of Pennsylvania where she received the Distinguished Alumni Award. She holds an MS from The George Washington University in Washington DC and received “smeicha” (rabbinic ordination) from The Rabbinical Seminary International and the Rabbinical Academy in New York City.
Rabbi Barbara says, “I am grateful to serve our Jewish “meshpucha” in ways that are exciting and exhilarating. Helping an Italian family discover their Jewish heritage to sharing memories with seniors, many who are more than 100 years old, allow me to fully engage in “L’dor v’dor,” that special Jewish experience of “from generation to generation.” From the United States to the Italian “boot,” these wonderful people continue to enrich my life.”
Rabbi Aaron Alexander
Congregation Adath Israel (Washington, DC)
Rabbi Aaron Alexander served for ten years as Associate Dean and Lecturer in Rabbinic and Jewish Law at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in Los Angeles, where he also received his ordination. He has long sat on the prestigious Committee on Jewish Law and Standards (CJLS) for the Conservative movement, the governing body determining Jewish law and practice for our entire movement. He is widely regarded as one of the nation’s leading authorities on Halacha (Jewish law), also certified as a mashgiach (kosher supervisor) by the Conservative movement’s Rav Hamachshir program. Rabbi Alexander was appointed as a Rabbi Samuel T. Lachs Fellow of LEAP, a joint program of the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and Clal-The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership. Rabbi Alexander serves on the Board of Jews United for Justice, the Leadership Circle of One America, the D.C. Attorney General’s Faith-Based Advisory Committee, and the City Council’s Interfaith Working Group. Among his achievements here at Adas, Rabbi Alexander has elevated our Social Action work to a high level of recognition throughout the Washington, DC community, and has reinvigorated our adult learning, bringing it to a level and quality that now serves as a model for synagogues across the country. Rabbi Alexander and his wife, Rabbi Penina Alexander, have three young sons, Ariel, Eliav and Amos. Rabbi.Alexander@adasisrael.org https://www.adasisrael.org/
Rabbi Camille Angel
University of San Francisco (San Francisco, CA)
Camille Shira Angel, an adjunct professor in the Swig Program in Jewish Studies and Social Justice, is also an ordained rabbi from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, and the author of articles including “Crafting a Liturgical Mirror,” in the wonderful new anthology The Sacred Encounter: Jewish Perspectives on Sexuality, and “Ruach Acheret-Ruach Hakodesh: Different Spirit-Sacred Spirit” in Torah Queeries: Weekly Commentaries on the Hebrew Bible.
She was the spiritual leader of the queer flagship Congregation Sha’ar Zahav from 2000-2015, where she edited and contributed to a radically inclusive prayer book, Siddur Sha’ar Zahav.
Her primary interests lie in being a mother and a loving companion while balancing the weight of the world and attempting to make forward progress on all matters concerning equality and justice — personal, communal, national, and global.
Rabbi Charles Arian
Kehilat Shalom (Gaithersburg, MD)
Rabbi Charles L. Arian joined the Kehilat Shalom in the summer of 2012. Previously, he was the rabbi of Beth Jacob Synagogue in Norwich, CT. He was raised in Brooklyn, New York, and Hazlet, New Jersey, and received his undergraduate degree in Foreign Service from Georgetown University. He received his MAHL degree and his rabbinic ordination from the Cincinnati campus of Hebrew Union College, and his Doctorate of Divinity, honoris causa, from the New York campus of Hebrew Union College on May 5, 2011. Although originally ordained as a Reform rabbi, he became affiliated with the Conservative Rabbinical Assembly while working for the Hillel Foundations.
Rabbi Arian has worked as a Hillel director and a think-tank scholar as well as a congregational rabbi. He has spoken and published widely in the area of Christian-Jewish relations. Rabbi Arian and his wife, Keleigh, are the parents of Berkeleigh, a nursing student at Bellarmine University.
Rabbi Bradley Artson
American Jewish University (Los Angeles, CA)
Rabbi Dr Bradley Shavit Artson (www.bradartson.com) has long been a passionate advocate for social justice, human dignity, diversity and inclusion. He wrote a book on Jewish teachings on war, peace and nuclear annihilation in the late 80s, became a leading voice advocating for GLBT marriage and ordination in the 90s, and has published and spoken widely on environmental ethics, special needs inclusion, racial and economic justice, cultural and religious dialogue and cooperation, and working for a just and secure peace for Israel and the Middle East. He is particularly interested in theology, ethics, and the integration of science and religion. He supervises the Miller Introduction to Judaism Program and mentors Camp Ramah in California in Ojai and Ramah of Northern California in the Bay Area. He is also dean of the Zacharias Frankel College in Potsdam, Germany, ordaining Conservative rabbis for Europe. A frequent contributor for the Huffington Post and for the Times of Israel, and a public figure Facebook page with over 60,000 likes, he is the author of 12 books and over 250 articles, most recently Renewing the Process of Creation: A Jewish Integration of Science and Spirit. Married to Elana Artson, they are the proud parents of twins, Jacob and Shira.
Rabbi Ethan Bair
Temple Beth Sholom (Miami, FL)
Rabbi Ethan Bair grew up in Boston. A graduate of Oberlin College and a former Fulbright scholar in Berlin, he was ordained at Hebrew Union College in Los Angeles in 2011. From 2013-2018, Rabbi Bair served as the Senior/Solo Rabbi of Temple Sinai in Reno, NV. While there, he succeeded in bringing young families into the community, revitalizing volunteer engagement, and building a culture of social activism. Prior to Temple Sinai, he worked in advocacy at the American Jewish World Service, a Jewish non-profit working to realize human rights in the developing world, and as Campus Rabbi at the University of Southern California Hillel.
Rabbi Bair identifies as part of a new generation of Jewish leaders for whom denominations are secondary to transformational Jewish experience. His commitment to interdenominational discourse has led him to participate in a number of multi-year fellowships including the Clergy Leadership Incubator for early career rabbis (2013-2015). He has also studied at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies (2011) and the Shalom-Hartman Institute in Jerusalem (2015 and 2017).
Rabbi Bair has decades of experience in singing and cantorial work that began with professional musical training at the American Boychoir School. He has been the High Holy Day chazan at Oberlin College (2000-2003) and at congregations in Ogden; Vancouver; Los Angeles; Sun Valley; and Reno. Passionate about revitalizing Reform Jewish prayer culture, he is committed to leading participatory and engaging services.
Rabbi Bair has served on the advisory board for a range of CCAR Reform publications including Mishkan HaNefesh for Youth, the Reform movement’s newest High Holy Day prayer book for youth and families; and Seven Days, Many Voices: Insights into the Biblical Story of Creation. He currently serves on the CCAR Task Force on the Experience of Women in the Rabbinate.
He enjoys running, hiking, singing, and welcoming Shabbat guests into his home with his wife, Nadya, who is a photo historian and Iyengar yoga teacher, and daughter, Chaya.
Rabbi Justus Baird
Shalom Hartman Institute of North America
Rabbi Justus Baird is Senior Vice President, National Programs at the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America. He shapes strategy for the Institute’s national initiatives (including programs for rabbis, campuses, and interfaith audiences), develops new program strategies, and serves as senior leadership.
Prior to joining Hartman, Justus was the Dean of Auburn Seminary. He was ordained at HUC-JIR and is an alumnus of both the Wexner Graduate Fellowship and the Hartman Rabbinic Leadership Initiative (RLI).
Raised in Texas, Justus lives in Princeton, NJ, with his wife Rabbi Julie Roth (Director of the Center for Jewish Life at Princeton University) and their three children. To stay healthy and sane, he rows on Lake Carnegie twice a week.
Rabbi Laura Baum
Rockwern Academy (Cincinnati, OH)
Recognized and valued for her leadership, intellect, innovation, caring, and collaboration, Rabbi Baum brings unique skills and experiences to Rockwern. Educated at Yale and trained at Hebrew Union College, she is a rabbi with an MBA and a degree in psychology, with a focus on development and cognition. She became Head of School at Rockwern in 2018 and loves being in a school environment where learning and curiosity are celebrated and community is built.
Prior to coming to Rockwern, she was Associate Vice President of Learning and Engagement at Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) in Boston. There, Rabbi Baum led the largest division of the Planning Department where she was responsible for allocating $18 million to the community and for developing, overseeing, and implementing a comprehensive strategy to connect people to Jewish life, learning, and community.
From 2008-2015, Rabbi Baum served as Rabbi of Congregation Beth Adam here in Cincinnati. While there, she built her rabbinate outside the box and founded OurJewishCommunity.org, which reached hundreds of thousands of people around the world. An expert on the changing needs of the Jewish community, Rabbi Baum created an innovative model for engaging those seeking a new way to connect to Judaism. In 2010, she was named by the Forward as one of the fifty most influential female rabbis in America. She is a Rabbis Without Borders Fellow and a Wexner Field Fellow. Her writing and work have been featured on CNN, the Jerusalem Post, NPR, and the New York Times.
Rabbi Marci Bellows
Congregation Beth Shalom Rodef Zedek (Chester, CT)
Rabbi Marci N. Bellows is proud to have joined the CBSRZ community in July, 2016. A native of Skokie, Illinois, she earned a B.A. in Psychology from Brandeis University. While at the New York campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Rabbi Bellows earned a Masters in Hebrew Literature in 2003, and, due to her interest in those who convert to Judaism, she wrote her rabbinical thesis on the topic, “Yisrael by Choice: Contemporary Understandings of the Psychosocial Aspects of Adopting a Jewish Identity.” Rabbi Bellows was ordained in 2004.
Rabbi Bellows served as a rabbinic intern in Brandon, FL; Edison, NJ; at the Union for Reform Judaism’s Commission on Social Action; and for the Women of Reform Judaism. Rabbi Bellows worked as both Adult Program Director and as Assistant Rabbi at Temple Shaaray Tefila in New York, NY, and, most recently, she served as the spiritual leader at Temple B’nai Torah in Wantagh, NY from 2009-2016.
Rabbi Bellows wrote the popular feature column, “Reform, Really,” on The Jewish Week’s website, was a recurring guest on The Jewish Channel’s “Rabbis Roundtable” television program, and was named one of the top “Jews on Twitter” by The Huffington Post, as well as one of the “15 Rabbis You Should Follow on Twitter Who Will Change the Way You Think about Rabbis.” She was also awarded a place in the 2020-2021 Rabbi Balfour Brickner Clergy Seminar and Fellowship through the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism.
In addition, she has been invited to lead and teach a variety of topics in a number of settings, including WRJ Assemblies, URJ Biennials, URJ Regional Biennials, and the URJ Adult Learning Retreat. She had led workshops on Guided Jewish Meditation, Israeli Women Poets, Midrash, and Using Social Media in Synagogue Life. She has also studied voice and theatre for many years, and is graduate of the People’s Improvisation Theater program.
Rabbi Bellows lives in Chester with her husband, Seth Lindenman, her son, Spencer, and their three cats.
Rabbi Eve Ben-Ora
Rabbi Eve Ben-Ora retired as the Director of Education at Temple Beth Torah in Fremont, CA in 2016. She has served as the Jewish Educator at JCCSF, Director of Jewish Education and the Director of the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School at Evelyn Reubenstein JCC in Houston. In 1999 she was named FMAMS Distinguished Director and in 2011 received a Covenant Award. Following ordination, Rabbi Ben-Ora, the first female rabbi in Colorado, was Associate Rabbi and Director of Education and Programs at Congregation Emanuel in Denver, Colorado. She was President of the Jewish Educators Council and The Rocky Mountain Rabbinical Council in Denver. Rabbi Ben-Ora was ordained at HUC-JIR.
Rabbi Angela W. Buchdahl
Central Synagogue (New York, NY)
Angela Warnick Buchdahl was invested as a cantor in 1999 and ordained as a rabbi in 2001 from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) in New York. She earned a BA in Religious Studies from Yale University in 1994. Born in Korea to a Jewish American father and a Korean Buddhist mother, Rabbi Buchdahl is the first Asian American to be ordained as a cantor or rabbi in North America. Prior to her appointment as cantor at Central Synagogue, Rabbi Buchdahl served as associate rabbi/cantor at Westchester Reform Temple in Scarsdale, N.Y.
Rabbi Buchdahl has been nationally recognized for her innovations in leading services, and has served as faculty for the Wexner Heritage Foundation and for the Union for Reform Judaism Kallot programs. She has been actively involved in Just Congregations, the Reform Movement’s congregation-based community organizing effort. Rabbi Buchdahl has been featured in articles in Reform Judaism, Shema Journal of Jewish Ideas, Newsweek’s 2012 list of “America’s 50 Most Influential Rabbis” and the PBS documentary 18 Voices Sing Kol Nidrei. She serves on the Board of Auburn Theological Seminary and the Multiracial Jewish Network.
Rabbi Buchdahl and her husband Jacob Buchdahl have three children.
Rabbi Paul Cohen
Temple Jeremiah (Northfield, IL)
Rabbi Paul F. Cohen, D.Min., D.D., has served as Temple Jeremiah’s Senior Rabbi since 2000. A Chicago native, he considers his profession meaningful because so much of what he does involves teaching and learning. He enjoys creating moments of connection at Temple Jeremiah by teaching in both informal and formal settings, and through “just living life.”
He earned a bachelor’s degree from Grinnell College in Iowa, where he studied biology and comparative religion. After college, Rabbi Cohen continued to feed his zest for learning by receiving his Master of Arts and rabbinic ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio, which in 2015 awarded him a Doctor of Divinity honorary degree celebrating his 25 years in the rabbinate. He earned a Doctor of Ministry from the Bangor Theological Seminary in Bangor, Maine, in May 2001. He is also a graduate of the Kellogg Management Education for Jewish Leaders program at Northwestern University. In 2016 Rabbi Cohen became a Senior Rabbinic Fellow of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem.
While in Cincinnati, Rabbi Cohen met his wife, Cathy, and together, they moved to Norfolk, Virginia, where he served as the assistant and then associate rabbi of Ohef Sholom Temple.
Throughout his career, Rabbi Cohen has strived to help his congregants feel deeply connected to community, Judaism and Jewish life, and for each person to feel inspired to do “Tikkun Olam” to make the world better for everyone. He strengthened this philosophy through years of taking on various social, economic and political causes.
Politically and communally active, Rabbi Cohen has accepted invitations to offer testimony before state legislative committees. He has served on numerous community boards of directors, including as founding president of the South Hampton Roads Campaign for the Homeless; president of the Greater Portland Interfaith Council; founding member of the Religious Coalition Against Discrimination; founding member and executive board member of the Maine Interfaith Coalition for Reproductive Choices; founding board member of Family Promise of Chicago North Shore; former president of the Chicago Board of Rabbis; and a member of the Ethics Committee of the North Shore Senior Center.
Through his decades of rabbinical experience and community involvement, Rabbi Cohen has learned that “there’s always more to a story.” According to him, “Live your life from the perspective of abundance vs. scarcity. With scarcity, there’s always fear, and with abundance, there’s always possibility.”
Today, he serves on the Clergy Advisory Board for the Public Defender of Cook County in Illinois, and is immediate past-president of the Chicago Association of Reform Rabbis.
Rabbi Cohen lives in Deerfield with his wife Cathy. He is the very proud, doting father of Jacob, Eli, Anna and Hope.
Rabbi Mychal Copeland
Sha'ar Zahav (San Francisco, CA)
Rabbi Mychal Copeland speaks and writes about the inclusion of LGBTQI people and interfaith families in religious life. She is the co-editor of Struggling in Good Faith: LGBTQI Inclusion from 13 American Religious Perspectives [Skylight Paths Publishing, 2015]. Prior to joining Sha’ar Zahav, Rabbi Copeland was the Director of InterfaithFamily Bay Area where she helped couples navigate a diversity of religious and cultural backgrounds. She served for thirteen years as a university Rabbi, first at UCLA and later at Hillel at Stanford University. She earned a Masters in Theological Studies and Secondary Teaching Credential from Harvard Divinity School in 1995, and a rabbinical degree from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2000. In 2005 she was recognized as being an Exemplar of Excellence by Hillel’s International Center, the highest individual honor for Hillel professionals. She served as the Cooperberg-Rittmaster Rabbinic Intern at Congregation Beth Simchat Torah in New York City, the world’s largest Jewish LGBTQ community and has carried that work into her career with college students. Mychal is a certified yoga instructor and fuses Jewish spirituality with movement in her yoga teaching.
Rabbi Romiel Daniel
Rego Park Jewish Center (Queens, NY)
Rabbi Romiel Daniel was born and raised in Mumbai, India in a religious home following the Indian Jewish tradition. After first arriving in the United States, to earn his Masters in Chemistry from Brandeis University, Rabbi Daniel returned to India to become the Vice President of an apparel company, moving from India to Mauritius and eventually Madagascar, before finally coming back to America to train as a Cantor at Yeshiva University. In 2008, Rabbi Daniel became Cantor of Rego Park Jewish Center.
As the only ordained Indian Rabbi in North America, Rabbi Daniel’s unique cultural position has made him something of a minor celebrity with write ups in The New York Times, Daily News, Jewish Week, and The Daily Forward amongst many others! In addition the Rabbi has been invited to lecture on The Jews of India at Lincoln Center, The Queens Museum, and JCC’s across the country.
Rabbi Brian Field
Religion Outside the Box (Denver, CO)
The founding rabbi of Judaism Your Way, and the current President of the Rocky Mountain Rabbinical Council, Rabbi Brian has dedicated his career to the pioneering of Jewish possibilities. Ordained by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 1994, Brian served as the first rabbi of Beth HaTikvah in Chatham, New Jersey, and two years later, the first resident rabbi of Shaarei Shamayim in Madison, Wisconsin. In 2004 Rabbi Brian relocated to Denver with his family to launch Judaism Your Way.
Rabbi Brian specializes in contemplative spirituality, multi-faith collaboration and working with interfaith and mixed-heritage couples. He is available for spiritual counseling and life event planning and officiation including weddings, baby namings, Year 2 Open Tent Be Mitzvah mentoring and funerals.
Inspired by the radical ecumenicism of Jewish Renewal pioneer Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi and the Integral Theory of Ken Wilber, Brian works for a maximally-inclusive Judaism that plays a robust role in the healing of the planet and the liberation of all human beings.
Rabbi Stacy Friedman
Congregation Rodef Shalom (San Rafael, CA)
Rabbi Stacy Friedman, Congregation Rodef Sholom’s senior rabbi, sees Judaism as a rich tradition which can inspire its followers to lift each human being and see within them the divine spark. She joined the congregation in 1993 after posts in New York City, Montana and Victorville, CA and was named senior rabbi in 2003 when her predecessor Rabbi Michael Barenbaum, z”l, retired.
Rabbi Stacy is passionate about prayer and ritual and believes strongly in the power and holiness of Congregation Rodef Sholom.
Dedicated to tikkun olam – repairing the world – she is known for her ardent sermons on social justice issues. Her 2014 Rosh Hashanah drash on mental illness and suicide, for which she received national attention, spearheaded a congregational initiative on the subject.
Born in Framingham, MA, Rabbi Stacy grew up in New York and Salt Lake City. She was just 16 when she decided to become a rabbi. After earning a B.A. degree in sociology at Brandeis University, she attended Hebrew Union College and was ordained at HUC-Los Angeles Institute of Religion in 1993.
Rabbi Stacy is a rabbinic fellow with AIPAC where she has met with leaders in Israel to devise new ways to engage U.S. synagogues with the Jewish state. She has joined rabbis across the country to fight Presbyterian divestment in Israel. She has traveled with American Jewish World Service to Guatemala on a fact-finding mission on human trafficking and has lobbied our congress-people on issues including human trafficking, LGBT rights and the environment.
In addition, she represents Congregation Rodef Sholom at the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) and Hebrew Union College (HUC). At home, among her many community involvements are the Pacific Association of Reform Rabbis, Marin Interfaith Council, the Northern California Board of Rabbis, and the Marin Interfaith Youth Outreach.
Rabbi Stacy is married to Frank Friedman and they have two sons, Adam and Eli. In her spare time she enjoys hiking, reading fiction, cooking, movies, gardening, traveling and meditation.
Rabbi Gordon Fuller
My Family Rabbi
Rabbi Gordon Fuller is an open-minded, pluralistic/non-denominational rabbi. He is a member of the Ohalah rabbinic organization of the Renewal movement. He loves teaching, pastoral counseling, and helping people have meaningful encounters with Jewish texts, thoughts, and practices. He is also interested in interfaith work, social justice, and environmental issues. He is a founding board member and currently Chair of The Good People Fund, a tzedakah organization.
Rabbi Gordy has spent his entire career in the non-profit world and has lived in many places, but mostly Chicago and Texas until moving to Maryland in 2015. He has a B.A. from Northwestern University and an M.A. in Social Work from The University of Chicago. He was ordained privately by two rabbis in the Dallas area. His positions have included camp and youth work as well as directing religious schools and a day school. He also served as Director of Jewish Education at the Dallas Jewish Federation before becoming a rabbi. Since ordination, he led a congregation in Waco, Texas, for 11 years, and in Chevy Chase, Maryland, for one year, and most recently was the Executive Director of the Haberman Institute for Jewish Studies. He also co-authored (with Dr. Joel Roffman) a book called Coping with Adversity: Judaism’s Response to Illness and Other Life Struggles.
He has worked with and taught preschoolers through senior adults. He loves officiating at lifecycle events and sees his primary role as one who shows people the wealth of values and wisdom that Judaism has to offer them that can be helpful in their personal lives. He also enjoys guiding those who are looking for more pathways into Judaism. Wherever you are on your personal journey, Rabbi Gordy is happy to help.
Rabbi Ruth Gelfarb
Congregation Har HaShem (Boulder, CO)
Rabbi Michael Culp Gilboa
The Footpath / Convert to Judaism Online
Michael Gilboa understands conversion to Judaism from every angle: as the head of a conversion program, as a congregational rabbi, and even as a conversion student. Growing up in Iowa he dreamed of heading off to Hollywood to make movies, but in film school in southern California he discovered his passion for Judaism and spent many years working toward conversion. Rabbi Gilboa studied at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in Los Angeles, and after many years in the pulpit he founded The Footpath as a conversion program for spiritual seekers looking for an online home. Rabbi Gilboa, his wife Emily, and their three kids divide their time between Chicago and the Iowa countryside.
Rabbi Rosalind Glazer
Founder & Chief Rabbi of Joyful Jerusalem Lifecycles & Destination Celebrations, I conduct soulful, egalitarian bar-bat mitzvahs in Israel and officiate at weddings and other lifecycle ceremonies around the globe.
My greatest passion is working with young people as they learn about Torah & mitzvot, find inspiration in their heritage and take pride in their Judaism. I help students find their voice and express their unique vision of a better world. I celebrate as they identify the gifts they bring and wish to share in this life. This joyful and inspiring project is the one to which I have dedicated myself at Joyful Jerusalem!
I am the creator of the Sacred Hebrew Chant & Drum Experience TM and was a co-founder of VOCOLOT an internationally acclaimed ensemble with whom I performed for a decade and recorded 3 CDs. In addition to recording a 4th CD with singer-songwriter Naomi Hannah I’ve composed a collection of original chants and niggunim.
Prior to making aliyah in 2012, I was senior rabbi of Congregation Beth Israel Judea, in San Francisco and I continue to serve in the US as both High Holiday Rabbi and Musical Liturgist at USCJ affiliated Sof Ma’arav in Honolulu, Hawaii. I teach Judaism individually to students and families and also offer spiritual & pastoral counseling. An alumna of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality and trained in a variety of body-mind healing disciplines, I was certified as a Jewish meditation instructor at Chochmat Halev in 1998.
In my spare time I cook vegetarian food, hang out with my five sabra nieces & nephews, hike, swim, make beaded jewelry and sing around the table after a great Shabbat meal, with a pop-up vocal ensemble or Kibbutz Revadim band, or perform new country & contemporary roots music.
Early career Rabbi Rosalind Glazer
After completing my rabbinic training I became the spiritual leader of USCJ Temple Beth Shalom in Brigantine, New Jersey, a small island just North of Atlantic City, NJ. During that time I also taught adults at Reconstructionist Congregation Mishkan Shalom in Philadelphia. In prior years I served as Cantorial Soloist and Coordinator of the Bar & Bat Mitzvah Experimentation Program at Kehilla Community Synagogue .
As an undergraduate I studied voice at Humboldt State University in Arcata, California. During rabbinical school I was the student-intern at the Kolot Center for Jewish Women and Gender Studies and a chaplain-in-training at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania. My student pulpit was at URJ Temple B’nai Israel in Laconia, New Hampshire. I received a Master’s degree in Hebrew letters and I was ordained at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2003 and hold a BA in Human Movement Studies from San Francisco State University with a minor in Holistic Health. Trained at the ReSource School of massage therapy and former member of the Bay Area Body Therapy Guild, I worked as a therapeutic bodyworker for a decade and served as a work-scholar at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, California.
Rabbi Isaama Goldstein-Stoll
Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale (New Haven, CT)
Rabbi Isaama Goldstein-Stoll is senior Jewish educator at the Joseph Slifka Center for Jewish Life at Yale. She was ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio. Originally from the Washington D.C. area, Isaama received a BA in Religious Studies from Carleton College before pursuing an MA in Hebrew Letters and Smicha at HUC-JIR.
Isaama has been shaped by the Reform movement in many ways: from transformative experiences in NFTY and at URJ Camp Harlam to her studies at HUC-JIR. However, in recent years Isaama has served as a student rabbi and rabbinic intern not only in Reform but also in Conservative and Humanistic congregations.
Isaama brings to Slifka her commitment to liberal Judaism and her pastoral experience. Additionally, Isaama has always been motivated by a deep commitment to diversity. Through her work at Be’chol Lashon, an organization dedicated to serving Jews of Color, Isaama has served as an advocate around issues of Jewish diversity.
Rabbi Marvin Goodman
Jewish Community Federation (San Francisco, CA)
Rabbi Marvin Goodma, at 68, is ready to clock out of the Board of Rabbis and his Federation-funded position as rabbi-in-residence. He is retired but will remain rabbi emeritus of Peninsula Sinai Congregation in Foster City, where he served as spiritual leader for 19 years. And he plans to devote more time to social action nonprofits, such as his role on the the steering committee of California Interfaith Power and Light, which encourages faith communities to fight climate change.
Rabbi Adam Greenwald
American Jewish University (Los Angeles, CA)
Rabbi Adam Greenwald is the Director of the Miller Introduction to Judaism Program at American Jewish University, the largest learning program for those exploring conversion to Judaism in North America. He also serves as Lecturer in Rabbinics at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies. In 2016, Rabbi Greenwald received the Covenant Foundation’s Pomegranate Prize in Jewish Education.
Rabbi Greenwald is the editor of On One Foot, an introduction to Judaism textbook and curriculum, in wide use across the US and Canada. He is a Fellow with the National Center for Learning and Leadership (CLAL)’s “Rabbis Without Borders” initiative and speaks and teaches nationwide on issues of conversion, inclusion, and engagement of Jewish millennials.
Prior to coming to the Intro Program, he served as Revson Rabbinic Fellow at IKAR, one of America’s most innovative spiritual communities. He received his BA in History from UCLA and his MA and ordination from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in 2011. He is married to Anne Hromadka, an art curator and consultant.
Rabbi Rachel Gurevitz
Congregation B'nai Shalom (Westborough, MA)
Rabbi Rachel Gurevitz has been with Congregation B’nai Shalom since July 2012. She previously served as Associate Rabbi at Congregation B’nai Israel in Bridgeport, CT. Rabbi Gurevitz was ordained from Hebrew Union College in 2006. She received her doctorate in Cultural Geography from University College London in 1999. Rabbi Rachel is an Associate of CLAL (National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership), where she was in the pioneering fellowship year of Rabbis Without Borders, was selected for a LEAP fellowship (a partnership project with the Katz Institute for Advanced Judaic Studies at UPenn), and serves as a mentor with CLI program (Clergy Leadership Incubator). She has a particular love of Jewish music, spirituality, and opportunities for interfaith bridge-building.
At Congregation B’nai Shalom, Rabbi Rachel has brought innovations to the community’s worship experience. She has created new opportunities for those who wish to deepen their spiritual journey. Placing opportunities to build genuine community connections at the heart of how we celebrate, learn, and do acts of social justice together, Congregation B’nai Shalom has become a hub of enriching activities of all kinds, with members working in partnership with leadership to continually experiment and create new opportunities to express Jewish values in action.
Rabbi Rachel is married to Rabbi Suri Krieger, and is proud to be part of a family with her four adult step-children.
Rabbi Lauren Grabelle Herrmann
SAJ - Judaism that Stands for All (New York, NY)
Lauren Grabelle Herrmann did not necessarily expect to become a rabbi when she was growing up in an assimilated (but mildly affiliated) Jewish home, with a strong sense of Jewish identity and history but little connection to ritual or spirituality. The Universe had other plans. When Lauren was in high school, she joined Jewish youth group and discovered a sense of belonging and meaning that transformed the trajectory of her life. At 17, she decided–or rather felt a call– to be a rabbi. A few years later, she discovered the Reconstructionist approach to Judaism and was deeply moved by its commitment to tradition, radical egalitarianism and inclusivity, and its embrace of both particularism (Jewish pride and identity) and universalism (concern for our world, connections outside the Jewish community). Every day, Rabbi Lauren marvels at sitting in the seat of Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, whose ideas have had a profound impact on American Judaism and whose positive formulation of Judaism in a modern world remains a model for us as we shape what the next generation of Judaism looks like.
Rabbi Lauren’s rabbinate has been driven by a desire to create inclusive Jewish communities of meaning, where a sense of belonging and community commitment is palpable. Rabbi Lauren joined as SAJ’s Rabbi in 2015 and set a bold vision for the next iteration of SAJ, to make SAJ a place where the values of Life-Long Learning, Tzedek (Justice), Kehilah (Community), Arts, and Spirituality flourish and radiate out. Since her arrival, new committees and task forces have been established, services strengthened, and programming expanded to reach a wider array of people within and beyond our community. Rabbi Lauren is also actively involved with the youth and teens of SAJ, visiting Makom where possible, welcoming children into the sanctuary through events like our Community Shir and rituals markers; Rabbi Lauren also teaches our high school students and runs an annual teen trip that combines learning, play and social action/justice.
Rabbi Lauren bring to SAJ her passion for Judaism and for justice and a firm belief that we cannot separate one from the other. Our Judaism informs our commitment to justice; our pursuit of justice IS a Jewish and spiritual one. Rabbi Lauren is a proud member of T’ruah: the Rabbinic call for Human Rights, the co-chair of the Rabbinic Council for JFREJ, Jews for Racial and Economic Justice. She is an active clergy member of New Sanctuary Coalition, an organization that fights for immigrants at risk for detention and deportation in NYC. Rabbi Lauren has been active champion of LGBTQ rights within and beyond the Jewish community, from her days as an intern at CBST, the world’s largest synagogue for LGBTQ individuals, family and and friends until today. In 2017, Rabbi Lauren organized the “Yes to Love, No to Hate: Interfaith Solidarity, Hope and Action” in response to the white supremacist march in Charlottesville, VA that gathered over 600 New Yorkers and brought together over 70 sponsoring organizations. In 2018, Rabbi Lauren participated in a mass mobilization and human rights mission to San Diego to support immigrants at the border. She is a proud alumni of the AJWS Global Justice Fellowship.
Before coming to SAJ, Rabbi Lauren was the founder of Kol Tzedek, an inclusive, dynamic and growing synagogue in West Philadelphia. She was also a founding clergy member of POWER, Philadelphians Organized to Witness, Empower and Rebuild. She graduated from The Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, graduating in 2006 and was the recipient of the Lillian Fern Award for Service to the Community and the Rabbi Kenneth and Aviva Berger Memorial Prize in Practical Rabbinics. She is a proud of Alumni of JOIN, the Jewish Organizing Initiative and Network and Rabbis Without Borders.
Rabbi Lauren lives in NYC with her husband Jon and her children Niko and Nadiv.
Follow @rabbilauren on Twitter or on Medium/@rabbilauren
Rabbi Heidi Hoover
Beth Shalom v’Emeth Reform Temple (Brooklyn, NY)
Rabbi Heidi Hoover is the rabbi of Beth Shalom v’Emeth Reform Temple in Brooklyn, NY. She was ordained in 2011 by the Academy for Jewish Religion (New York) and holds a MA in Jewish Studies from Gratz College. She was a Rabbis Without Borders Fellow, has been profiled in the New York Times, and has guest blogged for The Lutheran magazine. She is a participant in the Sacred Stories Project, a joint venture between Clal and the National Museum of American Jewish History. Her interests include the relationship between Jews and Germany, the experience and history of conversion to Judaism (she is a Jew by choice), and assumptions made about religious identity based on appearance and other superficial characteristics. Before rabbinical school, she had a career in publishing technology as a consultant and trainer.
Rabbi Esther Hugenholtz
Agudas Achim Congregation (Coralville, IA)
Rabbi Esther Hugenholtz serves Agudas Achim Congregation in Coralville, IA. Originally from Amsterdam, the Netherlands, she trained for the rabbinate in the United States and the United Kingdom and served as the associate rabbi in Leeds, England, prior to moving to America’s heartland. Passionate about making Judaism inclusive, spiritually compelling, and morally relevant in today’s world, she specializes in questions of conversion, ritual, social justice, and multiculturalism. She plays the guitar and composes Jewish liturgical and religious music. Rabbi Esther is married and the mother of two preschoolers.
Rabbi Micah Hyman
San Luis Obispo Hillel (San Luis Obispo, CA)
Dynamic thinker and charismatic speaker, able to engage with multigenerational audiences, Jews of varying levels of observance, and interfaith communities. Proven leader across varied institutions who has formed long-lasting community bonds and gleaned deep knowledge of the landscape of Jewish communal agencies. Committed to deep scholarship and a vision of pluralism for Jewish life in the broadest sense. Nahum Goldmann Fellow (2015), Shalom Hartman Rabbinic Leadership Fellow (2013), American Jewish World Service Leadership Circle
Rabbi Michael Adam Latz
Shir Tikvah Congregation (Minneapolis, MN)
Rabbi Latz has been Shir Tikvah’s Senior Rabbi since July 2009. He brings to the congregation boundless energy, heartfelt compassion, and commitment to fostering an authentic and engaging Jewish experience. Previously, he was the founding rabbi of Kol HaNeshamah in West Seattle. A Wexner Fellow during rabbinical school, Rabbi Latz was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2000.
Rabbi Sandra Lawson
Sandra Lawson is a rabbi, a sociologist, personal trainer, food activist, weightlifter, vegan, writer, public speaker, and musician. She was dubbed the Snapchat Rabbi and featured in JTA as one of 10 Jews you should follow on Snapchat and The 50 Jews everyone should follow on Twitter. In June 2018, after a long journey of intensive and wonderful learning, she was ordained as a rabbi by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. She currently serves as the associate chaplain for Jewish life at Elon University Hillel.
Rabbi Darby Leigh
Temple Kerem Shalom (Concord, MA)
Rabbi Darby Jared Leigh, a native New Yorker, is a life-long “truth-seeker.” His rabbinate is characterized by creativity, inclusivity, and a commitment to diversity. Rabbi Darby describes himself as “committed to finding creative ways to engage Jews of all ages and backgrounds and to creating welcoming, caring communities with intellectual honesty and spiritual depth.”
“I knew I wanted to become a rabbi,” he shares. “I wanted to sing and dance and pray, to engage people in this search for truth. But I pushed the thought away. A deaf rabbi?”
Rabbi Darby received a BA in Religion Summa Cum Laude from the University of Rochester. He then toured with the National Theater of the Deaf (NTD) and served as a social worker and counselor at the New York Society for the Deaf. Leigh earned a MA in Religion from Columbia University and his rabbinic ordination and a Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College.
Rabbi David Lerner
Temple Emunah (Lexington, MA)
For the past fifteen years, David Lerner has served as the spiritual leader of Temple Emunah in historic Lexington, MA, where he is now the senior rabbi. A graduate of Columbia College and ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary where he was a Wexner Graduate Fellow, Rabbi Lerner brings to his community a unique blend of warmth, outreach, energetic teaching, intellectual rigor and caring for all ages.
Rabbi Lerner serves as Immediate Past President of the Massachusetts Board of Rabbis and was recently honored by the New England Jewish Labor Committee with their Abraham Joshua Heschel Award due to his efforts to help workers. During his presidency, the MA Board of Rabbis built bridges with the Muslim community in Boston and raised its profile on public policy issues. He also received the Gann Connect Award in 2018 for his efforts in promoting Gann Academy in the Jewish community.
Other areas of interest are outreach to families and couples where only one partner is Jewish; he wrote the first ceremony in his movement for interfaith couples. He has written articles and chaired the Rabbinical Assembly’s Commission on Keruv (Outreach), Conversion and Jewish Peoplehood for four years. He has also served as President of the New England Rabbinical Assembly and currently, serves on the RA’s Committee on Social Justice advocating for stronger gun safety legislation. He is the founder of www.clergyagainstbullets.org and an advocate for Faiths United Against Gun Violence. Thanks to our teens, this may be the moment of change in this area!.
Together with a group of Temple Emunah lay leaders, he founded a new organization for the Boston Jewish community: the Community Hevra Kadisha of Greater Boston, a Jewish burial society where volunteers lovingly prepare those who have died for burial.
During a sabbatical three years ago, he was a scholar at Brandeis University where he researched liturgy and places of intersection between Judaism and eastern medicine and spirituality.
Several years ago, Rabbi Lerner started Emunat HaLev: the Jewish Meditation and Mindfulness Institute of Temple Emunah where he and Barbara Neustadt, Paul Neustadt and Beni Summers all lead meditation groups throughout the week.
In 2016, Rabbi Lerner organized a trip to Germany for 12 rabbis at the request of the German Consul General to New England. And in the summer of 2010 and 2018, he led the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Boston’s Interfaith Clergy Seminar to Israel. He has also taken over 500 members of his community on Israel trips over the last twelve years.
Previously he served as the associate rabbi at the North Suburban Synagogue Beth El in Highland Park, IL for five years. While in the Chicago area, he served as president of both the Southeast Lake County Clergy Association and the North Shore Fellowship of Rabbis. A STAR (Synagogues: Transformation and Renewal) Rabbinic Fellow, Rabbi Lerner was chosen to develop leadership skills in order to revitalize synagogues through innovation, organizational change and visioning. For two years, Rabbi Lerner participated in the second rabbinic cohort of the interdenominational Institute of Jewish Spirituality. He also graduated from the HealthCare Chaplaincy’s Clinical Pastoral Education program.
Rabbi Lerner is married to Sharon Levin, a psychotherapist in private practice in Lexington; they have three children: Talya, a senior at Gann Academy in Waltham; Ari, a freshman at the Gann, and Matan a 6th grader at Jewish Community Day School of Greater Boston. An avid sports fan, David also enjoys playing softball, cycling, running, soccer, basketball and yoga.
Rabbi Josh Lobel
Temple B'nai Israel (Clearwater, FL)
Rabbi Joshua Lobel believes the foundation of the synagogue is the creation of meaningful relationships. He seeks to establish connections between all members of the synagogue in order to learn how the congregation can provide a foundation to meet each individual’s spiritual needs. He strives to build a caring community, one in which members truly feel connected to each other and their faith. Nothing would make him happier than to meet you for a cup of coffee to learn about you and your family. Rabbi Lobel cannot wait to welcome you to our synagogue family!
Rabbi Lobel is passionate about teaching Torah, rabbinic texts, and Jewish thought to Jews of all ages. He has a wide variety of Jewish interests, including, but not limited to, Midrash, liturgy, Mussar, Reform Jewish history and thought, and Jewish mysticism. Passionate about the idea of Jewish peoplehood, Rabbi Lobel serves a member of the World Union for Progressive Judaism’s International Assembly, working to create strong and vibrant Jewish communities throughout the world! He is also an ardent Zionist, possessing a deep and abiding love for the State of Israel.
Rabbi Lobel believes the synagogue must be an intrinsic part of the greater community. He loves working within the interfaith community to build bridges of understanding between people of different backgrounds and cultures. He also seeks out partnerships with organizations dedicated to the service of the public good.
Prior to coming to Temple B’nai Israel, Rabbi Lobel served as the rabbi of Congregation Beth El in Missouri City, TX. He also had the honor of working as an associate rabbi at Temple Chaverim in Plainview, New York, and Congregation Shir Hadash in Los Gatos, CA.
Rabbi Lobel is married to Dr. Elizabeth Lobel, and they are proud parents of three boys.
Rabbi Daniel Mehlman
Rabbi Margot Meitner, LICSW
Margot Meitner, LCSW, is a Boston-based psychotherapist and an ordained rabbi. She holds a B.A. in Women’s and Gender Studies and History from Yale University, an M.S.W. from Smith College School for Social Work, and rabbinical ordination and a Masters in Jewish Studies from Hebrew College.
Margot is committed to accompanying people on their journeys toward emotional and spiritual health. She believes in the power of both psychotherapy and ritual to create change and inspire healing in people’s lives and approaches her work understanding the interdependence of individual healing with communal healing and social change. As a rabbi and ritual facilitator, she strives to create ritual that explicitly honors diversity and helps people see the relevance of Judaism to their lives.
As a psychotherapist, Margot has worked with a variety of communities including adolescents, survivors of trauma and abuse, families on welfare, people struggling with addictions and chronic mental illness, and queer/transgender people and their families.
Margot’s thesis research focused on transgender identity development. She has since facilitated the first ever transgender therapy group at Kaiser Permanente Oakland Medical Center and has a sub-specialty in her psychotherapy practice working with people around gender identity issues. She consults with a number of mental health and medical institutions on transgender issues and health care accessibility to help them better meet the needs of their transgender clients. As a psychotherapist working with transgender people, Margot does not see herself as a “gatekeeper” to the process of transitioning, but rather a guide on this journey of discovery, self-acceptance, and transformation.
Rabbi Juan Mejía
Southwest / Latin America Consultant, Be'chol Lashon
Rabbi Juan Mejía was born in Bogotá, Colombia. Raised a Catholic, he converted to Judaism after discovering the powerful beauty and message of Judaism. He holds a degree in philosophy from Universidad Nacional de Colombia, and a Masters degree in Jewish Civilization from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Juan was ordained in 2009 by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York. He lives in Oklahoma City, where he serves as the Jewish Educator for Emanuel Synagogue. He also serves as Rabbi in Residence for Be’chol Lashon.
Juan is a passionate advocate for converts and making Torah available to all. He has been teaching Torah in Spanish for over a decade through his website.
Rabbi Rachel Mikva
Chicago Theological Seminary (Chicago, IL)
Rabbi Katie Mizrahi
Or Shalom Jewish Community (San Francisco, CA)
Rabbi Katie Mizrahi, Or Shalom’s spiritual leader since 2007, guides our community in finding the joy at the heart of Judaism. Her wisdom and learning, and her singing and drumming, take us from the High Holy Day peaks to the rhythm of Shabbat and the sweet songs of Havdalah.
Rabbi Katie was ordained through the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2005. Previously, she studied for several years in Jerusalem, while devoting herself to human rights projects and peace education.
Rabbi Katie grew up in Boulder, Colorado, where the Rockies’ Front Range taught her to love mountains and vast untamed natural spaces. She came to the Bay Area as an undergraduate at Stanford, where she majored in philosophy and religious studies, and first felt the call of the rabbinate.
She has served as a Marshall T. Meyer Rabbinic Fellow at Congregation B’nai Jeshurun in New York City, a visiting rabbi for Kehilat Kol HaNeshama in Jerusalem, and a sabbatical rabbi for West End Synagogue, also in New York City.
Rabbi Katie feels tremendous gratitude for the gift of being a rabbi—sharing life’s greatest joys and sorrows with congregants—and living and working to nurture justice, holiness and peace in our world and in ourselves. Her spiritual practice includes social justice work, Torah learning, gardening, yoga, music, kindness, and time in the natural world.
Rabbi Katie lives in Pacifica with her husband, Raj Abbasi, and their two sons.
Rabbi Leana Moritt
Temple Beth-El of Jersey City (Jersey City, NJ)
Rabbi Leana Moritt officially arrived as the Rabbi of Temple Beth-El of Jersey City in July of 2018. However, as a congregational leader, teacher and chaplain, she is no stranger to Temple Beth-El or the tri-state area’s Jewish community.
Prior to joining Temple Beth-El, Rabbi Moritt served the Roosevelt Island Jewish Congregation as their part-time rabbi since 2007. There she was known as an engaging teacher of Torah and leader of prayer and chant.
Since 2001, Rabbi Moritt’s work has had a special focus on teaching Judaism to interfaith audiences and adults seeking to spiritually infuse or enter Jewish life.
Notably, Rabbi Moritt was the Director of Jewish Outreach at New York’s venerable 92nd St Y; instructor in the Union for Reform Judaism’s Introduction to Judaism Program; Director and Founder of Thresholds: For the Jewishly Curious; and instructor in the international Melton Adult Education Program. Her students know her for her warmth and ability to transmit a Judaism that is accessible, joyful and traditional yet relevant and modern. Through these and many other teaching venues, Rabbi Moritt has been guiding Jews, interfaith couples, families and Jews by choice toward more meaningful Jewish lives and a deeper understanding of Judaism. Her deep sensitivity to people’s Jewish connections and personal and spiritual needs has earned her the reputation as an expert in the field.
As a trained chaplain, Rabbi Moritt offered pastoral and spiritual care to the homebound elderly for Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest from 2015 to 2018.
Rabbi Moritt’s work also includes the creation and shaping of ritual. She was awarded the Rabbi Chana Timoner Creative Liturgy award by the Association of Rabbis and Cantors in 2008 for her work on innovative get (Jewish divorce) rituals.
Rabbi Moritt is a CLAL Rabbis Without Borders Rabbinic Fellow. Her other professional associations include the Central Conference of American Rabbis (Reform); OHALAH: The Association of Rabbis for Jewish Renewal; and Neshama: Association of Jewish Chaplains.
A native New Yorker, Rabbi Moritt is a graduate of New York University’s Gallatin Division where she earned a B.A. after earning an A.A.S. in Business Administration. Following graduation from NYU, she embarked on a successful 10-year career as Director of Production at Arista Records where she oversaw production of albums by many artists, including Whitney Houston, Kenny G, and The Grateful Dead.
Of all her work, she is proudest of the 3 amazing young men who call her Mom, and she currently lives in West Orange with her husband, Rabbi Steven Kushner, and their puppy, Shayna Maidele.
You can reach Rabbi Moritt at email@example.com.
Rabbi Carnie Robin Nafshi
Temple Beth Jacob (Concord, NH)
Rabbi Maya Resnikoff
Synagogue Breastfeeding Advocate, Chaplain, and Jewish Educator
Rabbi Carnie Shalom Rose
Congregation B'nai Amoona (St. Louis, MO)
Our Senior Rabbi, Carnie Shalom Rose, has lived, studied, and taught throughout the world – including stints in Canada, Israel, the Far East, and Europe. He is married to Pauline and they have four wonderful children – “The RoseBuds”, Noa, Zakai, Lev & Ellior.
Deeply committed to Jewish Pluralism, Rabbi Rose continually strives to find innovative ways to make Jewish Tradition existentially relevant for contemporary seekers. He is a dynamic and passionate teacher & preacher, and strives to bridge the ways of the past with the needs of the present for the sake of the future.
Rose has received numerous local, regional, national and international honors, awards and recognitions. He served as a Fellow at CLAL – the Center For Learning and Leadership; was a member of the Federation’s National Young Leadership Cabinet; was selected to participate in the STAR Rabbis: From Good to Great Program; participated in KJL – The Kellogg School of Management’s Education for Jewish Leaders Circle; CLAL’s Rabbis Without Borders; the Jewish Agency for Israel’s Global Emerging Leaders Forum; the International Rabbinic Leadership Council which advises the Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary; the Rabbinic Leadership Institute of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem; and spent a year as a Fellow at the Hebrew University’s Melton Center for Excellence in Jewish Education.
In 2010, Rabbi Rose signed a long-term contract with Congregation B’nai Amoona and was named the Rabbi Bernard Lipnick (Z’L) Senior Rabbinic Chair – a particularly poignant and fitting honor as Rabbi Lipnick served as a significant mentor and role model to Rabbi Rose.
Rabbi Rose is warm, affable and approachable and eagerly looks forward to communicating with those who seek his guidance and counsel. He can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Rabbi Isaiah Rothstein
The Jewish Federations of North America
Rabbi Ilan Schwartz
The Ohio State University Hillel (Columbus, OH)
Rabbi Rebecca Sirbu
Rabbis Without Borders (New York, NY)
Rabbi Rebecca W. Sirbu is the Director of Rabbis Without Borders at CLAL – The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership. Named as one of the most innovative Jewish organizations in America by the Slingshot Guide, Rabbis Without Borders stimulates and supports creativity in religious life. Rabbi Sirbu was named as one of the “Most Inspirational Rabbis in America” by The Forward Newspaper. She is a consultant for synagogues, organizations, and individuals on leadership development, building creative capacity, actualizing ideas, and how to work across religious and cultural borders. She is an expert voice on social media, speaker, and writer, on a variety of issues related to religion in America today. She is published in several books: I am Here: The Untold Stories of Everyday People, Faithfully Feminist: Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Women on Why They Stay, and The Sacred Calling: Forty Years of Women in the Rabbinate (anticipated 2015), and is regular contributor to eJewish Philanthropy among other publications. She manages and writes for the Rabbis Without Borders blog on myjewishlearing.com. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Vassar College, she holds a master’s degree and ordination from The Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She tweets at @rabbirebecca and @rwbclal.
Rabbi Gershom Sizomu
Uganda / Africa Consultant, Be'chol Lashon
Rabbi Gershom Sizomu is a Be’chol Lashon Rabbinic Fellow and the spiritual leader of the Abayudaya Jews of Uganda. Gershom is the current leader of the 100-year old Abayudaya community of almost 2,000 Jews living in rural villages in Eastern Uganda. He is the grandson of community elder “Rabbi” Samson and lives near the Moses Synagogue in the village of Nabagogye, which he and others from the community’s early 1980s “Kibbutz movement” built with their own hands. Their goal has been to gather what was left of the Abayudaya community back together after the devastating reign of Idi Amin Dada ended in 1979.
As a visionary leader, Gershom’s dream was to attend a rabbinic seminary to better understand ancient and modern egalitarian Judaism and bring the Ugandan community intomainstream Jewish life. Gershom was awarded a Be’chol Lashon Fellowship in 2003 to attend the five-year Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles. He returned to Uganda in 2008 as the first native-born black rabbi in Sub-Saharan Africa and opened a Yeshiva to train African teachers and rabbis to serve their ancient and emerging Jewish communities. In 2016, Gershom became the first Jew ever elected to Uganda’s parliament.
As a member of the Be’chol Lashon Speakers Bureau, Gershom travels to the United States every year as an ambassador for the Abayudaya and other emerging communities in Africa.
Rabbi Eric Solomon
Beth Meyer Synagogue (Raleigh, NC)
If I had to sum up Beth Meyer Synagogue in a word, I would say that we are a family—a hamish (warm), spiritual, socially-conscious, welcoming and growing family. Why would I compare our sacred community to a family? Because Beth Meyer is much more than a physical building or a set of programs and prayer services—we are a community that aims to treat its members as if they were our very own flesh and blood. We are not interested in judging you; we are interested in welcoming you as a fellow seeker. If you are Jewish, partnered to a Jew, or simply interested in exploring Judaism as your spiritual path—we have a place for you here.
And what are our family’s values? There are three, as noted above in this famous statement from the Talmud: Torah, Avodah, and Gemilut Hasadim. At Beth Meyer, we study the Torah in an effort to refine our souls and become greater moral human beings. We pray with heartfelt intention and seek ever greater ways to connect with God. We care for each other in times of need and celebrate with each other in times of joy. Lastly, we act to make the world a better place—here in Raleigh, in America, in Israel, and throughout the world.
Rabbi Theodore Stainman
Ted Stainman volunteered at ENP, helping the Ethiopian community in Netanya, Israel and assisting the program and the youth reach its goals. Better known as Rabbi Theodore Stainman, he was born in New Brunswick, NJ and attended Rutgers University graduating with a BA in History in 1964. He studied for a year at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel and returned the United States to enter the Hebrew Union College in New York City from which he was ordained a rabbi in the Reform Tradition in 1970. Following ordination he entered the United States Air Force as a military chaplain and remained in that capacity until his retirement in 1993. Following his active duty he moved to Seattle, Washington where he was the rabbi of congregation Bet Chaverim for the period, 1995-2005. He returned to Colorado in 2005 and became associated with congregation Or Hadash in Fort Collins. He also serves as a part time chaplain for the Denver Hospice.
Rabbi Stainman is married to Barbara and has two grown children and four grandchildren. His interests include archaeology, military history and cooking.
Rabbi Adam Stein
Beth Shalom (Vancouver, BC)
Rabbi Adam Stein grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area attending a Conservative synagogue, to which his parents still belong. He was an undergraduate at University of California, San Diego, and received his BA in Judaic Studies with minors in Theatre and Philosophy. During his college years, he spent one year studying at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and then spent another year in Jerusalem following graduation, at the Pardes Institute. Rabbi Stein worked for Hillel at a Los Angeles area University for a year before finally(!) deciding to go to rabbinical school. He was ordained from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles in 2009, where he also earned a masters degree in education.
After ordination, Rabbi Stein and his wife Tamar moved to Kansas City, where he was Assistant Rabbi at Congregation Beth Shalom. They then went to Melbourne, Australia, where for five years, he was Rabbi of the only Masorti (Conservative) synagogue in the Melbourne area, and one of two in Australia. Rabbi Stein and Tamar, along with two cute boys, Eli and Gabriel, both born in Australia, returned to North America in Summer, 2016, when he happily joined the staff of Beth Israel. He has long had passions for theatre, photography,and technology, especially Mac computers. In addition to email, please feel free to contact Rabbi Stein on Facebook or twitter, both @adamrabbi.
Rabbi Alana Suskin
Since 2015 there has been a wave of antisemitic incidents. The ADL’s most recent audit of antisemitic incidents in the US recorded 2,107 antisemitic incidents in 2019, a 12% increase from the 1,879 incidents recorded in 2018 and the highest number on record since ADL began tracking antisemitic incidents in 1979. The incidents in 2018, themselves had a dramatic increase in physical assaults, including the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history. Assault, harassment and vandalism against Jews are at historic levels in the U.S.
Institute for Social Policy and Understanding (ISPU) similarly reports increased Islamophobia in their 2019 report, and there has been a sharp rise in Islamophobic incidents, as well as in governmental policies that target people from majority-Muslim nations
In 2019, the last year for which FBI statistics are available, Jews and Muslims far outstripped other religious groups as victims of hate crimes in America.
Hamza Khan and Alana Suskin realized that there was a need to address both of these issues. Drawing from data about best practices, they realized that a program which worked jointly on both anti-Semitism AND Islamophobia by building relationships with and educating Christians, particularly in places where there are few or no Jews or Muslims would be one of the most effective things they could do. They soon realized that it would also be necessary to include synagogues and mosques, to address the misconceptions that each community has about the other. In short order, it became clear that part of the work of the Pomegranate Initiative would also need to include a focus on structural racism and racial justice, which impact a large number of both Muslims of color and Jews of color.
To that end, The Pomegranate Initiative was born. By priming people with positive images, creating a culture which stands up against prejudice, and giving people a graceful way to “save face” in leaving behind their prejudices, The Pomegranate Initiative is a powerful tool for building interfaith cooperation and appreciation in the US. The model that The Pomegranate Initiative uses is one that helps people to overcome cognitive biases and counteract harmful narratives.
When possible, we will resume traveling to communities (like yours!) around the US. But you can invite us to your community right now! We are now scheduling digital conferences. We schedule two to three one hour sessions over our digital platforms, during which we offer a concentrated version of our in-person sessions. Please contact us today so we can work with you to tailor our program to your needs.
Rabbi Tziona Szajman
Rabbi Tziona Szajman is a trained chaplain who works with people of all backgrounds during grief and illness to find their personal spirituality, their inner strengths and resources, and the connections that help us through difficult times. She is dedicated to marrying the traditions of Judaism with our unique needs and perspectives as individuals. Rabbi Tziona has a Masters in Jewish Education with experience in designing Bar and Bat Mitzvah ceremonies for people of all abilities and interests. Rabbi Tziona is available for learning and life cycle needs in the Ithaca area and via internet.
Rabbi Tziona Szajman lives with her husband, Tim Olivieri, and their daughter Eliyana Bracha Nuhamin in Vestal, NY. Please read more about her experiences in Ethiopia and elsewhere.
Rabbi Bridget Wynne
Jewish Gateways (Albany, CA)
I am passionate about meeting individuals and families “where they are,” and helping them to explore Jewishness in an open environment and find what is meaningful, alive, and real for them.
I was ordained as a rabbi in 1994 after attending rabbinic school in Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and Cincinnati. I then served congregations, first Leo Baeck Temple in Los Angeles, and then Congregation Shir Shalom of Sonoma in the Bay Area.
While I enjoyed that work, I saw a need among many Jews and their families and friends that was not being met. That’s why I founded Jewish Gateways. I invite you to learn more about my personal journey.
Rabbi Marina Yergin
Temple Beth-El (San Antonio, TX)
Rabbi Marina Yergin began her rabbinic career at Temple Beth-El on July 1, 2015. Rabbi Yergin has a deep enthusiasm, passion, and excitement about education for all ages, but has a specific soft spot for working with teens and young adults. At the same time, she is committed to expanding the Beth-El community with a welcoming attitude and a listening ear.
Rabbi Yergin grew up in Hoffman Estates, Illinois as an active youth at Beth Tikvah Congregation, where it was suggested she think about becoming Rabbi at her Bat Mitzvah rehearsal! While being in Illinois, she was involved in her Temple Youth Group and was on the NFTY-Chicago Area Region’s regional board as Membership Vice President and the President. While Hoffman Estates was not a very Jewish area, Rabbi Yergin found a community at both the synagogue and at URJ’s Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute in Oconomowoc, Wisconsin. Rabbi Yergin attended the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities where she received a BA in Hebrew, Sociology, and Jewish Studies, with a minor in Leadership. While there, she was involved at Hillel, in her Jewish sorority, in the Admissions department for the University, and was a TA for Modern Hebrew courses.
Rabbi Yergin was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati in May 2015. While living in Israel, she participated in the Israeli Movement for Progressive Judaism’s Riding4Reform bike trip from Modi’in to Masada as well as the World Union for Progressive Judaism’s Former Soviet Union Pesach Project aiding communities in their Passover celebrations. Rabbi Yergin served as the Student Rabbi at Congregation Ahavath Sholom in Bluefield, West Virginia for two years as her first student pulpit. She then moved to becoming the Rabbinic Fellow and Intern at Hillel at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio for two years. In the summers during her years as a rabbinic student, she staffed a NFTY in Israel trip and worked at URJ’s Henry S. Jacobs Camp in Utica, Mississippi expanding her work with high school students and getting to know Reform teens from all over the country. Rabbi Yergin has also completed two units of Clinical Pastoral Education focusing on her work at Hillel at Miami University and working as a chaplain at Jewish Hospital in Cincinnati.
Rabbi Yergin and her husband Dave are ecstatic about being in Texas to be a part of Temple Beth-El and the San Antonio community. They welcomed their first child, Trevor, in early 2018.
Rabbi Shlomo Zarchi
Congregation Chevra Thilim (San Francisco, CA)
Rabbi Shlomo Zarchi is is the rabbi of Congregation Chevra Thilim, the oldest Orthodox synagogue in San Francisco. He received his rabbinic ordination from the Rabbinical Academy in Jerusalem and New York.
Rabbi Zarchi comes from a Hasidic family of rabbis that goes back six generations. Growing up in Brooklyn, he learned Hebrew and Aramaic as soon as he was able to read. He began studying Kabbalah shortly thereafter, at the age of five. He has studied under some of the great Hasidic and Kabbalistic masters. He is one of the foremost experts on the Kabbalah on the West Coast and is a frequent lecturer. Rabbi Zarchi currently teaches classes at the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco.
Rabbi Zarchi has traveled to many parts of the world through his involvement in outreach programs. He spent significant time in the Former Soviet Union participating in the synagogue recovery program in the early 1990s.
He presently serves on the Vaad Hakashrus of Northern California.
Rabbi Zarchi lives in San Francisco with his wife, Chani, and their five children.
Rabbi Reuben Zellman
Conductor, Community Music Center, San Francisco
Reuben Zellman was born and raised in California, and has studied and worked in Santiago de Chile, Jerusalem, New York and Los Angeles. He received his B.A. in linguistics from U.C. Berkeley, M.M. in choral conducting from SF State, and M.A. in Hebrew literature and rabbinical ordination at Hebrew Union College. He trained in chazzanut (Jewish modal theory and performance practice) under Cantors Jackie Mendelssohn and David Bentley. Reuben is the Director of Music at Congregation Beth El in Berkeley. His research interests include Jewish music of the Baroque and early Classical periods. An educator in the transgender community, Reuben speaks and has been published extensively on gender identity and religion. https://music.sfsu.edu/people/faculty/reuben-zellman
(2018) Reuben Zellman is a teacher, conductor, singer and longtime activist and educator in the transgender community. In addition to directing New Voices Bay Area, he is a lecturer in the School of Music at San Francisco State University, where he teaches ear training, musicianship and choral ensembles, and is a staff countertenor in the Choir of Men and Boys at San Francisco’s Grace Cathedral.