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Baruchim Haba'im! Welcome to Temple Beth David!


I am so excited to be the spiritual leader and part of the amazing kehillah, community, at Temple Beth David (TBD)!  In my journey here, my career has brought together my passion in both education and the Jewish community.  Recently, I served as the Jewish Life and Interfaith Coordinator at DePaul University and for the previous nine years was a leader in the Tampa JCCs and Federation as the Executive Director of Jewish Learning. My 20+ years of leadership and teaching experience has included overseeing programming from early childhood through adult learning.  My own schooling includes a B.A. in Education from Purdue University, an M.S. in Jewish Studies from the Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies, and a Ph.D. in Education from UCLA.  


My experiences within the field of education and Jewish communities led me to rabbinical seminary at the Jewish Spiritual Leaders Institute (JSLI) where I was ordained this past year, in June. I chose to study at JSLI because it fits with my philosophy of congregations and Jewish life - I believe it also fits well with the community of Temple Beth David.   In today's world, congregations include people who were raised in different denominations with a wide range of traditions; furthermore, many Jewish people are not affiliated with any synagogue.  I believe it is critical to embrace the diversity of the Jewish world and individuals, without judgment.  It is important to meet people where they are at and help people engage with and connect to the Jewish community in different ways.  Each person’s presence matters.


Jeff and I have enjoyed getting to know the TBD family and exploring the Spring Hill area. Family is a critical part of my life.  I love spending time with my children and appreciate how welcoming the TBD kehillah has been for all of us. While not talkative in public, Coby takes it all in and is in the process of studying for his bar mitzvah.  Mara is passionate about Jewish summer camp and excited to attend a gap year program in Israel this year before attending college.  And our two cats and three dogs are also loving being a part of our family's journey here at TBD!


Are you interested in welcoming, sacred Jewish spaces?  Want to find out more about Jewish and interfaith life cycle events?  Connect with us at TBD.  




Rabbi Jen


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