Jaymee Alpert serves as Senior Rabbi of Congregation Beth David in Saratoga, California. She is particularly interested in the connection between spirituality and physical activity. She is the co-creator of Neshama Body and Soul, a practice that combines exercise with prayer, in order to help participants connect their physical and spiritual lives.
Rabbi Dr. Bradley Shavit Artson occupies the Abner & Roslyn Dean’s Chair at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at American Jewish University in Los Angeles, where he is Professor of Philosophy. He is also the Dean of the Zacharias Frankel College in Berlin, ordaining Masorti rabbis for Europe.
Ordained at JTS in 1999, Rabbi Jacob Blumenthal served for 20 years as the Founding Rabbi at Shaare Torah in Gaithersburg, Maryland. He currently serves as the CEO for the Rabbinical Assembly and for the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.
Rabbi Neil Blumofe
Neil Blumofe serves as the Senior Rabbi of Congregation Agudas Achim in Austin, Texas -- a thriving community. He is interested in how our personal and civic real time issues of concern impacts our relationship for meaning and purpose and also animates our prayers.
Scott Bolton is the Rabbi of Congregation Or Zarua on the Upper East Side of Manhattan for 8 years and a former head of school at two Solomon Schechter Day Schools. He was ordained by the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies.
Cantor Jack Chomsky has served Congregation Tifereth Israel of Columbus, Ohio since 1982. He commissioned the Broadway/Hollywood/Film composer Gary William Friedman to write a NEW service for Selichot and worked closely with the composer to develop this positive and emotional work.
Sheree Curry has been a member of Adath Jeshurun Congregation in Minnetonka, MN for almost 18 years. She was the first marketing communications director hired at Adath. As a journalist and PR professional, she worked at Fortune, the Wall Street Journal, People magazine, and for a year in Israel writing for Ben Gurion University's Negev magazine. She sits on the boards of the Twin Cities Black Journalists associations and media company Jewfolk Inc. For nearly 35 years Sheree has been an active member in Jewish communities across five states where she has lived. She was the founding editor of a Jewish magazine in Iowa; worked in communications for the JCCA in St. Louis and wrote for the St. Louis Jewish Light. She was the editor of the Central Illinois Jewsh Federation newsletter in the early 90s and as a student started D'varim magazine at UIUC Hillel, to name a few of her endeavors. About 20 years ago she started an online community for Black Jews to share their experiences. BlackandJewish.com has grown to more than 2,000 members. She will forever be the mom of Josh and Jared Levy z"l.
Rabbi Amy Eilberg is the first woman ordained as a Conservative rabbi by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She serves as a spiritual director, kindness coach, and peace and justice educator. Her book, From Enemy to Friend: Jewish Wisdom and the Pursuit of Peace, was published by Orbis Books in March 2014.
Rabbi Hannah Estrin is a an engaging tour guide and rabbi who lives in Jerusalem. An avid educator exploring the intersection of text, spirituality and Israel, she now works as an on-line educational facilitator. She believes in the power of deep and honest conversations.
Merle Feld's poetry appears in Mahzor Lev Shalem (RA Press),Siddur Lev Shalem (RA Press) and The Torah: A Women's Commentary (CCAR Press), in numerous anthologies and in her own books, A Spiritual Life: Exploring the Heart and Jewish Tradition (SUNY Press, revised 2007), Finding Words (Behrman House, 2011) and What we have longed for since the very beginning (forthcoming). For information about Merle's award-winning plays, visit derekh.org/returning/.
Rav Natan Freller is a passionate educator who loves to learn, teach, and create meaningful spiritual communities. Originally from Brazil, currently serving Congregation Etz Hayim in Arlington, Virginia.
Raphael Frieder is the cantor of Temple Israel of Great Neck. Cantor Frieder has toured extensively in Israel, Europe, and the United States, and has appeared in such diverse venues as New York's Carnegie Hall and the Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris. He also teaches Chazzanut at the H.L. Miller Cantorial School of the Jewish Theological Seminary.
Dr. Lewis Gordon, a professor and Department Head of Philosophy at the University of Connecticut, is among the leading scholars in black existentialism. He works in the areas of Africana philosophy, existentialism, phenomenology, social and political theory, postcolonial thought, theories of race and racism, philosophies of liberation, aesthetics, philosophy of education, and philosophy of religion. He has written particularly extensively on Africana and black existentialism, postcolonial phenomenology, race and racism, and on the works and thought of W. E. B. Du Bois and Frantz Fanon. His most recent book is titled: Freedom, Justice, and Decolonization.
Rabbi Mark Greenspan
Rabbi Mark Greenspan served as the spiritual leader of congregations in Knoxville, Tennessee, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and Oceanside, New York before retiring. He is a past president of the Rabbinical Assembly of Nassau and Suffolk County. He has translated over twenty commentaries on the Haggadah, many of which appear on Sefaria.com. He is the author of Sacred Adornments, a collection of poems on the weekly parshiot (https://izzunbooks.com).
Helene Kates, lead singer and songwriter with The Baal Shem Tones, tours internationally providing concerts and Jewish Educational Programs for all ages. Ordained as a Maggidah Omanit, Kates works with individuals and their families to explore and strengthen their intrinsic bond to the Torah and Mitzvot through the transformational power of story and song.
Following a 16-year career in book publishing, Lilly Kaufman received cantorial investiture ('98) and rabbinic ordination (’01) from JTS. Lilly served as rabbi and cantor at Congregation Tikvoh Chadoshoh in central CT; as Director of Jewish Learning at Adath Jeshurun Congregation in Minnesota; and, most recently, as Director of the Torah Fund campaign of WLCJ at JTS, from which she stepped down in June. Lilly is a past member of the CA Ethics Committee; the RA Va’ad Hakavod; and the Editorial Advisory Committee of Siddur Lev Shalem for Shabbat & Festivals. Three of her poems were published in Siddur Lev Shalem for Shabbat & Festivals. Lilly has a life-long interest in art.
Rabbi Elie Kaunfer is the President and CEO of the Hadar Institute (www.hadar.org). Elie holds a doctorate in liturgy from the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he was also ordained; he also received semikha from his long-time teacher, Rav Daniel Landes.
Michael Klayman is Rabbi of the Lake Success Jewish Center. He has been a long time activist in the local community and co-authored the family book Sharing Blessings: Children’s Stories For Exploring the Spirit of the Jewish Holidays (Jewish Lights).
Named by The Forward as one of “America’s Most Inspiring Rabbis,” Michael Rose Knopf is a leading advocate for interfaith collaboration, an activist for social justice and global human rights, and the author of Thirty Days of Liberation: Pathways for Personal and Social Transformation Inspired by the Book of Exodus. He is the Rabbi of Temple Beth-El in Richmond, Virginia, and hosts the podcasts PopTorah and Socially Distant, Spiritually Close.
Dr. Michelle Kuhl is an experienced higher education professional specializing in student and academic affairs. As president of Grey Girl Life, a consultancy aimed at preparing high school and college students for success, she assists students and their families with navigating the complexities of higher education. As a Black, Jewish woman, she is familiar with all the traditional pathways and also those that might work best for students who come from diverse backgrounds. With a PhD in Educational Policy and Administration and a master’s in Counseling and Student Personnel Psychology, Dr. Kuhl is a sought-after advisor for K-12 organizations seeking to build a more informed pipeline. Her quantitative and qualitative skills allow her the understanding to incorporate the latest best practices and promote organizational policy and process changes at all levels of an organization. Dr. Kuhl is a member of Adath Jeshurun Congregation’s Antiracism Committee and is a frequent guest speaker and panelist on issues related to diversity and Black-Jewish relations. She lives in Minnetonka with her husband and two children.
Cantor Hinda Labovitz
Chevy Chase, MD
Cantor Hinda Eisen Labovitz is the cantor and religious school director of Ohr Kodesh Congregation in Chevy Chase, MD. She graduated from Hebrew College's School of Jewish Music in 2014. She is the co-chair of this event!
Rabbi Neal Joseph Loevinger, a board certified chaplain, is Director of Spiritual Care and Ethics Coordinator at Vassar Brothers Medical Center, in beautiful Poughkeepsie, NY, where he previously served Temple Beth-El. He was the fourth graduate of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, is married to Jenn, with whom he has two children, and rides his bikes up and down the Hudson Valley as often as he can.
Rabbi Kara Tav (JTS ’10) is a board certified chaplain who currently serves as the Manager of Spiritual Care and Palliative Care Chaplain at NYU Langone, Brooklyn. Rabbi Tav was born and raised in a small town in Canada. She has lived in 5 countries, loves learning languages and is married to Kobi. They have a daughter Ella, who serves as an officer in the IDF. Rabbi Tav was ordained after a 20 year career in Jewish education (MAT, Teachers College, Columbia University ’91). Passionate about multi-faith care in acute care settings, she has previously served as the Director of Spiritual Care at Elmhurst Hospital.
Jonathan Lubliner has served for 16 years as the Jack F. Shorstein Senior Rabbi of the Jacksonville Jewish Center in Florida. He uses bibliodrama on the bimah, in the classroom, and at Camp Ramah Darom, where he spends several weeks each summer as a rabbi-in-residence.
Rabbi Laurie Matzkin is a community rabbi in Silicon Valley focused on supporting Spiritual Seekers, Jewish Families, and Torah Yoga. She is the founder of Makom Yoga and also serves as the PJ Library Family Educator for Silicon Valley. After 7 years as the Director of Lifelong Learning at Congregation Kol Emeth in Palo Alto, she also serves as rabbi for The Villages Jewish Group in San Jose.
Rabbi Steven Morgen graduated from UCLA School of Law in 1983 and practiced corporate and securities law in Los Angeles for over nine years. He was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America (in New York) in 1998, and moved to Houston to serve as a rabbi at Congregation Beth Yeshurun and has happily remained there for 22 years. He is involved in a variety of interfaith and educational programs at Beth Yeshurun and in the Houston area.
Hazzan Penny Myers, a native Buffalonian, has been serving Temple Beth Zion, Western New York’s largest synagogue as Cantor since 2006. Hazzan Myers serves the Cantors Assembly in many leadership positions, is Chair-elect of the Great Lakes and Rivers Region of the CA, and most recently was inducted into her High School’s ‘Wall of Fame’ due to her exceptional reputation in the pulpit and her community.
Rabbi Micah Peltz is the Senior Rabbi at Temple Beth Sholom in Cherry Hill, NJ. He graduated from the University of Michigan and was ordained in May 2007 at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he also received a Masters in Jewish Education from the William Davidson School of Education. Rabbi Peltz is the President of the Great Philadelphia Region of the Rabbinical Assembly, a member of the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards, and the New Jersey State Commission on Holocaust Education. His writing has been published in Haaretz, the South Jersey Jewish Voice, and the journal Conservative Judaism. Rabbi Peltz is married to Rachel Zivic, Head of School of Kellman Brown Academy, and they have three children..
As the Associate Rabbi of Congregation Neveh Shalom in Portland, Oregon Rabbi Eve Posen delights in learning from and teaching all ages and stages of her community. Rabbi Posen recently completed her first marathon (walking), and is mother to Shiri and Matan, partner to Duncan and human pillow to Stanley the dog.
Rabbi Ruti Regan is a disabled feminist rabbi working at the margins of Jewish community. She is currently a visiting scholar at the Harvard Law School Project on Disability, and previously served as Rabbinic Disability Scholar in Residence at Matan.
Cantor Ken Richmond has been the cantor of Temple Israel of Natick, MA, since 2006. Invested as a cantor by the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2004, he is working towards rabbinical ordination through Hebrew College in 2021.
Rabbi Shira Shazeer received Rabbinical ordination from Hebrew College in 2010 and serves as School Rabbi of MetroWest Jewish Day School in Framingham, MA. The two met playing klezmer music over 20 years ago, and have a family band with their three children, with whom they speak only Yiddish at home.
Peretz Rodman is the Av Bet Din of Israel’s Masorti Bet Din and a former president of the Rabbinical Assembly’s Israel region. A native Bostonian who has lived most of his life in Israel, where he earned his ordination at the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary, Peretz has taught Jewish studies, Hebrew, and Jewish education to undergraduates, graduate students, and rabbinical students at Brandeis University, Hebrew College, HUC-JIR, the Schechter Institute, and the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
Rabbi Uri Allen is a guitar playing, Abba of three who loves cooking, traveling around the country to see his favorite band Phish and learning Torah. His passions in the rabbinate are in educating and teaching learners of all ages, working with young families like his own, and using music to add contour and depth to Jewish rituals and life. He currently serves Congregation Beth Mordecai in Perth Amboy NJ. Rabbi Allen received Rabbinic ordination from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies along with an MA in Rabbinic Studies from American Jewish University, an MA from Tel Aviv University in Jewish Thought in partnership with The Melamdim Teacher Training Program of the Hartman Institute, and he is a graduate of the University of Maryland with a BA in Jewish Studies. He lives in Roslyn New York with his wife Sari and three children Doron (7), Aderet (5) and Yedidyah (4).
Rabbi Ariella Rosen lives in Toronto, Canada, and is the Senior Jewish Educator for the University of Toronto, York University, and Ryerson University. Ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2015, she has worked as a rabbi in a variety of settings, including congregations, educational institutions, and summer camps (her favorite).
Rabbi Eric Rosin has served as the Rabbi at Neve Shalom, a Conservative synagogue in Metuchen, New Jersey since the summer of 2015. He continues to be grateful for the opportunity to learn, lead and share in the life of the community.
Rabbi Michael Safra is Senior Rabbi of B’nai Israel Congregation in Rockville MD, where he has served in various roles since 2002. He holds Rabbinic Ordination and an MA (concentration in Bible) from the Jewish Theological Seminary and an AB from the University of Michigan (concentrations in History and Judaic Studies).
Dr. Shuly Rubin Schwartz is chancellor of The Jewish Theological Seminary. She is a renowned expert on Jewish American history with more than three decades of experience as a professor and institutional leader.
Rabbi Ahud Sela was ordained at JTS in 2007 and has been serving Temple Ramat Zion for the past 10 years. He recently published his memoir, Seeing Angels in the Shadow of Death: A Rabbi's Journey through Illness and Healing.
Rav Ariel has been practicing and teaching Jewish mindfulness for the past decade. He’s passionate about giving people Jewish mindfulness practices to help bring meaning, depth, and skill to their lives.
Hazzan David F. Tilman is a graduate of Columbia College, the Miller Cantorial School of the Jewish Theological Seminary, and the Juilliard School, where he earned the Masters of Music Degree in Choral Conducting. He was Hazzan and Music Director of Beth Sholom Congregation of Elkins Park,Pa, retiring after 36 years. He served as Associate Professor at JTS for five years. Hazzan Tilman is beginning his 10th year as Choral Director and Pastoral Outreach Professional at Reform Congregation Keneseth Israel in Elkins Park. He is music director of the Sing Hallelujah Concert Series at Verizon Hall of the Kimmel Center, bringing together 170 singers with guest cantorial soloists. He was a consultant to the National Museum of American Jewish History for their major Bernstein at 100 Exhibit.
Robin Washington grew up in a Chicago family of black and Jewish civil rights activists. Participating in sit-ins and protests when he was three years old, today he recalls those events fondly as “family outings” — though history records them as dangerous and nation-changing.
The winner of many prestigious journalism awards, Washington has appeared on MSNBC, Fox News, ABC News, CNN, National Public Radio and the BBC. From 2004-14, he was editorial page editor, news director, and then editor of Minnesota’s Duluth News Tribune. Previously, he was a columnist for the Boston Herald, for which he covered the Catholic Church sexual abuse scandal. His columns have also appeared in the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, Minneapolis StarTribune, Chicago Sun-Times, the Baltimore Sun, San Jose Mercury-News and many other newspapers.
A Fellow in Science Broadcasting Journalism at WGBH TV Boston , Washington has lectured and given keynote addresses at Harvard, MIT, Brown, Middlebury, the University of Minnesota and dozens of other colleges and universities. He was an adjunct faculty member at Northeastern University and Emerson College and is currently a research scholar for the Institute for Jewish and Community Research.