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Congregation Shomrei Torah

Leadership & Staff

 
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Rabbi George Gittleman joined Shomrei Torah as our first full time rabbi in 1996.

In 1991 he embarked on his rabbinical journey after 8 years in computer sales, obtaining a Masters in Hebrew Letters and Ordination from the Reform Seminary, Hebrew Union College Jewish Institute of Religion in 1996.

Rabbi George is a Senior Rabbinic Fellow at the prestigious Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, and a graduate of the Rabbinic Leadership Program and Jewish Mindfulness Meditation Teachers Certificate Program of The Institute for Jewish Spirituality.

Civic engagement is an important part of Rabbi George’s work. Currently he is a member of the Santa Rosa Police Chief’s Community Ambassador’s Team, on the Board of the Redwood Empire Food Bank, a member of the Clergy Council of the North Bay Organizing Project and a leader of the new Interfaith Fast Initiative.

Rabbi George is married to Laura, an artist and Nurse Executive for Kaiser, and they are blessed with twin adult children, Levi & Sophia.

Rabbi George's Sermons  

Rabbi George's Blog

 

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Executive Director 

Katie Evenbeck comes to CST with a wealth of management, budgeting and fundraising experience. 

For more than 17 years, Katie served as the Executive Director of St. Dorothy’s Rest, an Episcopal camp and retreat center located in West County. Katie has also served as the Community Services Director in the Indiana prison system; ran YMCA Camp Roger in Salt Lake City, UT; and is an AmeriCorps Alum.

Katie has a BA in Economics & Sociology, MS in Sociology, and an M.Div. from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific. 

When not working or in school, Katie enjoys spending time with Lucie, her twelve-year-old, Ike, her partner, and Rosie, her Lab Corgi. She is an avid documentary film fan, softball mom, Zumba instructor, and creator of pediokies, an experience of getting a pedicure while singing Karaoke!

Cantorial Soloist & B'Mitzvah Coordinator 

Erica Wisner serves as Cantorial Soloist, B'nei Mitzvah coordinator, tutor, and choir director at Congregation Shomrei Torah. She loves to create musically themed Shabbatot. 

As a young child, Erica grew up going to services and fell in love with Jewish musical liturgy when her parents started a synagogue in Sacramento County. Erica is in her second year of cantorial school at the Academy for Jewish Religion, California. 

Erica holds a master’s degree from The Boston Conservatory and a bachelor’s degree from UCLA. 

Erica and her husband, Chris, moved to Santa Rosa in 2008, after marrying here in 2007.  They are the proud parents of Noah and Lael.

Erica's music

Communications & Office Manager

Julie Hash oversees membership pledges and billing as well as publicity for programs and events in The VIEW, the CST Connect and the CST Website.

Julie has a bachelor of science degree in pre-veterinary medicine from UC Davis. Prior to joining CST, Julie worked in retail management and ran Ebay and Etsy business. 

Julie's favorite people (outside of work!) are her husband, two daughters, and two silly cats. Julie also very much enjoys plants, gardening, gaming and crocheting.

Director of Education and Youth Engagement

Lara Brown began her work with children in 2006 as an in-home daycare assistant. After receiving her AA in Music from Cuesta College and B.S. in Child Development with a minor in Psychology in 2013, she worked in various roles such as Lead Preschool Teacher at Acorn Learning Center, Music Educator at Art and Soul, and Therapeutic Behavioral Services Coach with Seneca Family of Agencies. In 2016, Lara began her work in Jewish Education as Assistant Director and later Co-Director at Beth Ami Community Nursery School. In May of 2021, she accepted the role of Area Director at North Bay Children's Center supervising six preschools and one elementary aftercare program across two counties. Now, she is thrilled to be back in the world of Jewish Education as the Director of Education and Youth Engagement with Congregation Shomrei Torah.

In her spare time, Lara is a member of the local Reggae/Rock group Sonomacana, and can be found performing original compositions and covers on most weekends. She enjoys playing the flute, ukulele, and singing with her bandmates. She also enjoys spending time with her dog Sampson, roaming around in nature with her partner Kyle, watching Star Trek, and playing video games on her VR headset.

Facility & Operations Manager

Pieter joined Shomrei Torah as Administrator, but he also supports the facility and technology operations at CST.

Pieter holds degrees in philosophy and music from the University of California, San Diego. Prior to joining Shomrei Torah, he was working as a sales manager in the fitness industry. You can find him at the gym, on the tennis court, or in the music studio.

Pieter's hobbies include hiking, tennis, music production, cooking (and eating), listening to philosophy lectures, and taking in a good novel.

 

Administrator

Angelica Steinman is excited to rejoin Shomrei Torah as Administrator. Not only is she part of our office team, she is also a member of the congregation. She brings over 20 years of experience in customer service, administrative, and accounts payable roles.

Angelica has her associate degree in Dance from SRJC, and she’s performed with local dance companies in Sonoma County since the early 2000’s. Over the years she has worked for local organizations such as: Community Market, Oliver’s and recently LandPaths. She also spent a year exploring a career as a Flight Attendant and traveling to new places.

Angelica enjoys spending time with her family, time in nature, making home cooked meals and dancing around the house with her toddler.  

Temple Liaison

Denise joined Shomrei Torah in 2001 as the first full-time office receptionist/administrative assistant. Denise's family joined the temple in 1975 as the 14th member family.

Denise was the first Sisterhood President, spent some time on the Board of Directors, and taught Kindergarten at Shomrei Torah for 9 years. Currently she is back at the reception desk ready to meet and greet you and answer any questions that you may have.

As Temple Liaison, Denise attends all services and events, gets to know our new members and helps them to connect. When not at work, Denise enjoys spending time with her husband of 38 1/2 years, Ken, her two daughters, son-in-law, and granddaughter. Denise also enjoys music and crossword puzzles.

 

Committee Chairs

CARING COMMITTEE

Fran Danoff

CULTURAL COMMITTEE

Beverly McChesney

DONOR/NAMING OPPORTUNITIES

Marlene Stein, John Weinstein 

EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

Eli Weinzveg

FINANCE COMMITTEE

Reuben Weinzveg

HUMAN RESOURCES COMMITTEE

Jillian Navarro

JEWISH MEDITATION PLANNING COMMITTEE

Judith Richlin-Klonsky

JUDAICA SHOP COMMITTEE

CST Office

LEGACY CIRCLE COMMITTEE

Marsha Jacobs

LIFELONG LEARNING COMMITTEE

Carolyn Carregui

MEMBERSHIP COMMITTEE

Larry Lapides, Sandy Sidorsky

ONEG COMMITTEE

Susan Roth

RELIGIOUS SCHOOL COMMITTEE

Dave Fichera

RELIGIOUS PRACTICES COMMITTEE

Judith Richlin-Klonsky

SECURITY COMMITTEE

Arnold Rosenfield

SOCIAL ACTION COMMITTEE

Michelle Foster

Group Leaders

BAGEL CLUB

Rick Reisman & Jerry Newman

BUTTONS

Chuck & Debbie Tesler

CHAVURAH

Jan Schwartz

CHOIR

Erica Wisner

ELISHA'S PANTRY

Suzanne Abrams

GREETING CARDS

Lee Spitzer

GRAPHIC DESIGN

Susan Bailyn

LITERARY CIRCLE

Sandy Sidorsky

LIBRARY

Stan Roodman

TORAH ORGANIZERS

Fran Danoff

WEB

Jay Peretz

WOMEN’S INTEREST GROUPS

Ronnie Campagna

Sat, September 23 2023 8 Tishrei 5784