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Blog - Congregational Questionnaire

12/06/2018 09:15:59 AM


Click Here to read the Congregational Questionnaire submitted to the Rabbinical Assembly for potential candidates to learn about Temple Israel. 

Blog - Senior Rabbi Search Committee Presentation

11/30/2018 03:43:06 PM


To view the presentation, please click on the image below.

Blog - Congregational Community Forum

11/27/2018 09:36:57 AM



Please be a part of the discussion and join us for one of the following dates:




  • Sunday, December 9  (11 a.m.)
  • Tuesday, December 18  (6:15 p.m.)
  • Wednesday, December 19  (7:45 p.m.)

Blog - Senior Rabbi Search Committee 

11/25/2018 09:58:31 PM


On Sunday, November 4, 2018, an orientation meeting of the Senior Rabbi Search Committee was convened. This Committee is Co-Chaired by Amy Udoff and Gary Michel.Seven working groups have been formed, each tasked with specific duties and responsibilities, and supporting the Co-Chairs of the Committee. In turn, each working group is comprised of team members led by a Leader or Co-Leaders. Names are listed in alphabetical order. The Committee is a fluid, dynamic entity, subject to change without notice.


Congregational Questionnaire Working Group: Ron Weiner, Leader, was supported by Glenda Bernhardt, Gary Michel, David Rosenthal, Amy Udoff and Jo-Anne Tucker-Zemlak, our United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism Southeast Seaboard District Kehillah Relationship Manager. The work of this group has been completed with the acceptance of our Congregational Questionnaire and posting of our Senior Rabbi position with The Rabbinical Assembly.


Screening/Interview Working Group: Amy Udoff and Gary Michel, Co-Leaders, are supported by Arlene Berkman, Glenda Bernhardt, Sam Bernstein, Tom Bock, Stuart Breidbart, Sara Kulbersh, Adina Loewensteiner, Dan Ruda, Rachel Seymour, Lynne Sheffer, Ron Weiner, Steve Weiner and Barney Weinstock. At the time of this writing, Temple Israel has received five curricula vitae from candidates.


Congregational Engagement/Communications Working Group: Amy Udoff and Sara Kulbersh, Co- Leaders, are supported by Betsy Grant-Kaperonis (Red Cape Design, Temple Israel’s third-party marketing consultant), Karen Knoble and Beth Stillitano.


Group Connectors: Gary Michel, Major Donors; Lynne Sheffer, Past Presidents; Barney Weinstock, Ritual; Steven Cohen, Social Action; Ruth Goldberg, Social Club; Michael Abadi, Temple Israel’s Men’s Club; Rachel Seymour, Temple Israel Religious School; Eric Cohen, Torah on Tap; Adina Loewensteiner, Torah Tots; and, Shellie Barer, Women of Temple Israel.


Hospitality/Visits Working Group: Amy Udoff and Sara Kulbersh, Co-Leaders, are supported by Glenda Bernhardt, Elissa Levine, Jodi Michel, Judy Miller, Andrew Rosen and Lynne Sheffer.


Negotiation/Testing Working Group: David Rosenthal, Leader, is supported by Sam Bernstein, Dan Biber, Stuart Breidbart, Teresa Brenner, Steven Cohen, Gary Michel, David Miller and Steven Rogelberg.


Transition/Onboarding Working Group: Marlin Jennes, Leader, is supported by Glenda Bernhardt, Melanie Brown, David Cohen and additional members, to be determined.


Advisory Group: Gary Michel, Leader, is supported by Milton Berkman, Barry Bobrow, Rael Gorelick, Steve Hockfield, Howard Levine, David Miller, Allan Oxman, Frank Rosen, Eric Sklut, David Swimmer and Ron Weiner.


An orientation presentation will be posted to the blog/website providing further detail on the Senior Rabbi Search Committee. Stay tuned!


11/16/2018 05:39:08 PM


Hello Temple Israel Kehillah,


My name is Amy Udoff and I am Co-chairing the Senior Rabbi Search Committee along with Gary Michel. I am a 4th generation Temple Israel member, my great grandparents, Harry and Rebecca Roth were one of the first weddings at Temple Israel. My grandparents, Marylin and Morris Roth, were also members of Temple Israel. My grandfather, Morris, was one of the founding members of United Brotherhood. My parents, Dorothy and Norman Shapiro, were married at Temple Israel on Dilworth Road and are still active members of Temple Israel today - my mom has helped transition the old “Young Couples Club” members to become the new “Empty Nesters” group at Temple Israel! (Time flies when you’re having fun at TI!) My husband Ross and I were married at Temple Israel by Rabbi Ezring and Cantor Roochvarg, who also helped me become a Bat Mitzvah. Most importantly, Ross and I have two children, Olivia (4) and Jacob (2) who love our Clergy and feel at home here at Temple Israel. Any chance they have to run up to both Rabbi Ezring and Cantor Lissek to give both of them big hugs means that it’s going to be a good day. My son Jacob even had a meltdown once because Rabbi Ezring wasn’t in the building when we were there; we had to call him later to schedule a visit.


Why am I telling you all of this? Because my children are only two of the many, many children who will be the future of our synagogue. It’s critical we find a rabbi who can share with our next generation of children, the traditions of Conservative Judaism while also allowing all of us to continue to grow in our own Jewish journeys.


Based on information shared via congregational surveys and focus groups, you have let us know that we would like our next Senior Rabbi to be:


Someone who is deeply versed in Jewish texts and committed to Jewish traditional practice, able to transmit the beauty and richness of Judaism to others.


Someone who has the vision and ability to energize others religiously, spiritually and intellectually, and to model the ideals of traditional Judaism in the contemporary world. The future of Jewish life requires nothing less.


Someone who has the tools to navigate the sea of Torah and Jewish living, bridging the applicability to all aspects of contemporary life.


Someone who is an innovative and authentic individual.


Someone who is transformative, willing to dare, combining action and leadership, connecting and activating what it means to be Jewish within the framework of our contemporary world


We hope and expect to find a wonderful individual who has all of these skills and embodies all of these characteristics to lead Temple Israel into the future. We look forward to updating you all as our search continues.



Amy Udoff


Fri, December 14 2018 6 Tevet 5779