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Rabbi Denise L. Eger

Rabbi Denise L. Eger (she/her)

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.

Associate Rabbi Ross Z. Levy (he/him)

Born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, Rabbi Levy comes from two undercurrents of the American Jewish experience. His father's family has been active in his home congregation, The Temple Congregation Ohabai Sholom since settling in Nashville in the early 1850's. Rabbi Levy's mother grew up in Brooklyn, NY, the child of first and second generation Eastern European Jewish immigrants. Rabbi Levy's passion for all things Jewish has been guided by these two perspectives. From the summers he spent at Camp Barney Medintz in Georgia and his active involvement in BBYO at the chapter, regional, and international level, his journey continued to The George Washington University in Washington, DC, where his studies in Religion and Philosophy led him to a greater appreciation for the intellectual insights of our tradition. During those four years, Rabbi Levy studied the history of Sephardic Jewry in Granada, Spain, and participated in the URJ Religious Action Center's Machon Kaplan Program, fulfilling his internship at the Washington Bureau of the NAACP. 

Student Rabbi Elana Rabishaw (she/her)

Elana Rabishaw is a fifth year rabbinic student at HUC-JIR in Los Angeles. Born and raised in LA, Elana is happy to be back in California after earning her Bachelor’s of Science degree from the University of Wisconsin- Madison (Go Badgers!), where she double majored in Community and Nonprofit Leadership and Modern Hebrew. She earned her Master’s of Arts in Jewish Education from HUC this past May. Following her year in Israel, Elana has worked at numerous synagogues in different capacities, from Yakima, Washington to very close to Disneyland, and across Los Angeles. Elana is excited to join the vibrant Kol Ami community!

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.
Thu, June 30 2022 1 Tammuz 5782