Director of Education and Music Program Update

Dear Friends,

We would like to update you on our Director of Education search and our plans for the
music program next year.

Under this year’s leadership of Rabbi JoHanna Potts and the educational leadership team
made up of Andrea Mark, Emily Meyer, Scott Kravetz, and Xani Pollakoff, Temple
Shalom has continued to offer a strong youth and family Jewish educational program for
our Temple Shalom families giving us time to carefully consider the type of person we
look forward to having fill the position in our school looking forward.

Over the past several months, our Director of Education Search Committee has been
putting together job descriptions and application materials and meeting to determine what
we seek for this new leader. T he Director of Education Search Committee has submitted
applications to the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR) for Rabbi Educator
candidates and the Association of Reform Jewish Educators (ARJE) for non-clergy
candidates. Over the past month, we have been receiving impressive applications from
these organizations, which include experienced congregational clergy educators,
rabbinical students with education-related backgrounds, and Jewish education
professionals. Video conference interviews will begin this week and will continue through
the second week in February. Following those interviews, the committee expects to invite
the top candidates for in-person visits to the Temple. We anticipate that an offer may be
made as early as March.

As we have shared with you before, this year we tried a new format for music. Cantorial
Soloist Emily Meyer and Student Cantor Lianna Mendelson typically have been
alternating most Friday night Shabbat services and dividing b’nai mitzvah services, with
Cantorial Soloist Meyer leading our choirs and Student Cantor Lianna Mendelson leading
Shabbat Morning Worship and Torah Study. We hope you have had a chance to
experience the joy and spirituality this new format has brought to the Temple. We are
pleased to share that at the December 2018 Board of Trustees meeting, upon
recommendation of Rabbi Rachel Ackerman and the Executive Committee, the Board
voted unanimously to continue this music program for the next fiscal year that begins
July 2019. As we settle a new Director of Education, we will also have the opportunity to
explore long-term options for our music program; meanwhile we are excited to know that
Cantorial Soloist Meyer and Student Cantor Mendelson will continue to contribute their
talent and beautiful voices to our services next year!

As always, please feel free to reach out to us with questions or comments regarding these

Rabbi Rachel Ackerman (
Rita Klein, President (

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