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Congregation Shomrei Torah
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Welcome to the Rabbinic Transition Page

This is the place to learn about Congregation Shomrei Torah’s short- and long-term plans for our rabbinical future. It’s also the spot to visit for details of “good-bye” celebrations for Rabbi George. 

Welcome Rabbi Andi Berlin, CST's Interim Rabbi

Search Committee for CST's Next Settled Rabbi

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Welcome Rabbi Andi Berlin!

The CST Board of Directors is pleased to announce that Rabbi Andi Berlin will serve as Interim Rabbi from July 2024 through June 2025, following the retirement of Rabbi Gittleman. 

Rabbi Berlin notes, “I came to know Shomrei Torah when I worked for the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) and have always been impressed with the community’s warmth, engagement, and religious diversity. Given my blend of rabbinic expertise and organizational development skills, I can help Shomrei Torah process the retirement of your long-time senior rabbi, support the remaining staff, and look forward to welcoming a settled rabbi.”

Rabbi Berlin spent most of her congregational rabbinic career at Temple Sinai of Oakland, where she is known for her teaching and pastoral care. Rabbi Berlin developed a passion for helping organizations through transition, conflict, and development when she worked for the URJ. Most recently, she operated Berlin Consulting, LLC in the San Francisco Bay Area, working with corporations to resolve conflict, develop leaders, negotiate difficult decisions, and ensure organizational growth and strength. Rabbi Berlin was a member and chair of the Ethics Committee of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR); the president of the Pacific Area of Reform Rabbis; and chair of the East Bay Council of Rabbis.

Rabbi Berlin holds a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology/Sociology/World Religion from Ohio Wesleyan University, where she was recognized with several community and academic honors. She received a Master’s of Hebrew Letters and Ordination through the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, where she received prizes for her sermons and community organizing.  The Interim Search Committee, Board of Directors, clergy, and staff were impressed with her ability to make Torah accessible and relevant and found her personally approachable and engaging.

In her free time, Rabbi Berlin enjoys hiking with Jon and Buddy (her spouse and her dog), spending time with her family, cooking, reading, camping, traveling, and performing with her improv troupe.

There will be many opportunities to get to know Rabbi Berlin, through special events designed to welcome her once she comes on board, her meetings with CST committees, and her teaching, presence on the bimah, support through lifestyle rituals, and availability for pastoral care.  Please join us in welcoming Rabbi Berlin!

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March 2024 Update

The Board of Directors is pleased to announce the Search Committee for Congregation Shomrei Torah’s next settled rabbi:

 

Sharon Bauman

Fran Danoff

Alissa Hirshfeld

Marguerite Longtin

Erica Magers

Nicole Novach

Jeremy Olsan

Judith Richlin-Klonsky, Co-Chair

Stan Roodman

Ellen Van Den Berg

Eli Weinzveg, Co-Chair

Elisette Weiss

 

The committee represents a mix of generations and family constellations, as well as a variety of Jewish backgrounds and orientations toward Jewish life and practice. Committee members have been broadly and deeply engaged with the CST community, giving the group familiarity with:

  • Many aspects of our congregational life, including social action, Shabbat and holiday observance, Torah study, programs for children and teens, adult education, and working with clergy and administration.
  • The range of rabbinic work.
  • The process of collaborative rabbinic and lay leadership.
  • The sacred nature of the rabbi-congregant relationship.

The Selection Committee will launch into its work soon, with a goal of recommending a candidate to the Board of Directors in the Spring of 2025. Members have committed themselves to serving the needs of the CST community as a whole and expect to devote a significant amount of time, individually and together, to the assessment of applicants.

Todah rabah - deep thanks - to the large number of knowledgeable and dedicated individuals who expressed interest in participating in the search. We look forward to broad involvement in many parts of the transition process. Check for updates as the search unfolds.

Sun, June 23 2024 17 Sivan 5784