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Clergy

Rabbi Barry Lutz (Interim Rabbi) (he/him)

Rabbi Barry Lutz is joining us in his 39th year serving the Los Angeles Jewish community as a rabbi and educator. Over the past five years, Rabbi Lutz has served as interim rabbi for the University Synagogue, (now Wilshire Boulevard Temple), The Santa Monica Synagogue, and Temple Beth El of South Orange County. In each of these positions he provided support, guidance, and leadership as each community transitioned to a new settled rabbi.
 
A product of the Reform movement, Rabbi Lutz’s journey to the rabbinate began as a NFTY and URJ camp song leader. Music has played an integral role in his personal and professional life. He recently served as the curriculum consultant for the Lowell Milken Center for Music of American Jewish Experience where he developed a curriculum exploring the intersection of the American Jewish experience and Jewish music. Rabbi Lutz looks forward to the opportunity to break out his guitar for Kol Ami Shabbat services and celebrations.
 
Rabbi Denise L. Eger
 

Rabbi Denise L. Eger (she/her) 
[On sabbatical]

Rabbi Denise L. Eger is the founding Rabbi of Congregation Kol Ami, West Hollywood’s premier Reform Synagogue. Rabbi Eger is a Past President of The Central Conference of American Rabbis, the largest rabbinic organization in the world, and was the third woman and first openly gay or lesbian person in the position. Rabbi Eger is a Past President of the Board of Rabbis of Southern California, the first woman to serve in the post.
 
She was honored by the City of Los Angeles, and was also named by the Huffington Post as the Most Inspirational GLBT Clergy Person in America. In 2010 she was named by the Jewish Daily Forward as one of the top 50 women rabbis in North America. In 2008, the Jewish Daily Forward named her as one of the Forward 50—the 50 most influential Jewish leaders in the United States for her work on GLBT rights.
 
Rabbi Eger is the editor of the groundbreaking book:  Mishkan Ga'avah: Where Pride Dwells: A Celebration of LGBTQ Jewish Life and Ritual. She is the co-editor of Gender & Religious Leadership: Women Rabbis, Pastors and Ministers by Lexington Press. She is the author of numerous articles and has contributed frequently to several anthologies. Some additional writings include two chapters in the book The Sacred Encounter: Jewish Perspectives on Sexuality published by the CCARPRESS. She posts regularly on her blog: Walking Humbly, Seeking Justice, Living with Hope.
 
 
 

Student Rabbi Frankie Salzman (they/them)

Frankie is a rising fourth-year Rabbinical Student at the Hebrew Union College -Jewish Institute of Religion. They grew up in Carmel, IN, and received their undergraduate degree from Indiana University with a double major in Jewish Studies and Religious Studies in December 2016. They are passionate about queer advocacy and equitable treatment for all. When not working, they enjoy all things nerdy, especially LARP (Live Action Role Playing).

Frankie made their debut in-person service leading on Friday, June 24, 2022, alongside Rabbi Eger, and we can't wait to get to know them better when they officially starts in August 2022.

Cantor Emeritus Mark Saltzman (he/him)

Cantor Emeritus Mark Saltzman has been a beloved and inspiring presence during his 18 years at Kol Ami. Trained as a classical singer, but comfortable in a variety of styles and periods, Mark creates a warm and inclusive atmosphere. Whether he’s chanting traditional prayers or leading a service of the most recent contemporary Jewish music, he is known for his beautiful singing and heart-filled interpretations.
 
Cantor Saltzman is also a noted composer of liturgical music whose melodies are sung in many congregations throughout the United States. He is proud to be a synagogue composer published by the URJ’s Transcontinental Music division.
 
Tue, April 23 2024 15 Nisan 5784