CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 13

Community Rabbis
Justus Baird

Eight years into my rabbinate, I
find myself as the dean and rabbi
of Auburn Seminary in New York.
We equip leaders for faith-rooted
social justice work. Without degrees,
students, or faculty, we raise and spend $7
million a year to train and support thousands
of Protestants, Catholics, Jews, Muslims,
Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, and anyone else
who is bringing a faith perspective to today's
movements for justice. Our leaders faithfully
engage many issues: racial justice, poverty,
immigration, environment, immigration,
reproductive justice, LGBT equality, guns,
money in politics, voting rights, and more. Our
digital organizing platform, Groundswell, is
over 225,000 users strong, growing by 5,000 a
month. Auburn's media and storytelling trainings
are regularly sought out by top leaders who are
doing the hard work of trying to break through
the chatter. We consult with clergy who are
upgrading their congregation's approach to
social justice. Our senior fellows include the Rev.
Dr. William Barber (Moral Mondays movement

in NC), Brian McLaren (evangelical Christian
writer), Sister Simone Campbell (of NETWORK,
the Catholic group leading the Nuns on the Bus
tours), and one of our own, Rabbi Stephanie
Kolin (previously at Just Congregations, now at
Central Synagogue).
We have worked closely with the RAC, with
Rabbi Rick Jacobs, and many others from the
Reform Movement.
I went to HUC-JIR to become a congregational
rabbi. Inspired by a mentor, Rabbi Sam Karff
from Houston, I equated rabbinic leadership
with pulpit leadership. But when I was ordained,
there wasn't one Reform congregational opening
anywhere in New Jersey where I was rooted (my
wife, Rabbi Julie Roth, directs Princeton Hillel).
When Auburn reached out, I anxiously gave it
a try and quickly fell in love with my colleagues
and our work.
The Reform Movement's commitment to
social justice is exemplary. Our rabbis, our
congregations, and our institutions have an
inspiring legacy of social justice activities and
a significant portfolio of current activities. But
after years of working in multifaith movements,

I wonder how the social justice leadership by
Reform rabbis and Reform Jewish institutions
could become even more deeply connected
to the wider world of faith-rooted justice work
in America.
Faith-rooted campaigns for justice are growing
across America on all kinds of issues that CCAR
members care about. The more we can weave
efforts together, the stronger we will be. I will be
working to make those connections, and I hope
some of you will help me. The only way that
"justice can roll down like a mighty stream" is for
us to direct the water from springs and streams
of justice we lead into similar directions.
Please reach out to me to explore ways to
connect your social justice leadership with the
work of other faith communities. And if you
want to strengthen your own social justice
leadership in any way, such as upgrading your
congregation's justice work, stretching your
storytelling skills, practicing advanced media
skills, learning digital organizing techniques, or
engaging in better self-care, Auburn would be
honored to be your partner.

(Continued from page 2) NEWLY ORDAINED RABBIS

REBECCA KAMIL, Elmhurst Memorial Hospital,
Elmhurst, IL, CPE Chaplain Resident

DANIEL REISER, Westchester Reform Temple,
Scarsdale, NY, Assistant Rabbi

STEFAN TIWY, United Jewish Center, Danbury, CT,
Solo Rabbi

DUSTY KLASS, Temple Beth El, Charlotte, NC,
Assistant Rabbi

BENJAMIN ROSS, Leo Baeck Temple, Los Angeles,
CA, Assistant Rabbi

NATAN TRIEF, Beth Shalom Synagogue, Baton
Rouge, LA, Solo Rabbi

JAY LEVINE, Temple Isaiah, Lafayette, CA, Assistant

TOBA SCHALLER, Emanu-El B'ne Jeshurun,
Milwaukee, WI, Rabbi Educator

DANIEL UTLEY, Temple Emanu-El, Dallas, TX,
Assistant Rabbi

ADAM LUTZ, Rhea Hirsch School of Education, Los
Angeles, CA, Student

RACHEL SCHMELKIN, Congregation Beth Israel,
Charlottesville, VA, Rabbi Educator

JESSICA WAINER, Northern Virginia Hebrew
Congregation, Reston, VA, Rabbi Educator

SARAH MARION, Temple Oheb Shalom,
Baltimore, MD, Assistant Rabbi

SAMANTHA SHABMAN, Temple Sinai, Atlanta,
GA, Assistant Rabbi

ELLE MUHLBAUM, Temple Beth-El of Great Neck,
Great Neck, NY, Assistant Rabbi

MICHAEL SHEFRIN, Temple Emanu-El, Sarasota,
FL, Assistant Rabbi

MIRIAM WAJNBERG, JCC Manhattan, New York,
NY, Director of Adult Jewish Learning and Interfaith

BRIAN NELSON, Judea Reform Congregation,
Durham, NC, Director of Education

TINA SOBO, Temple Israel, Dayton, OH, Rabbi

ZACHARY ZYSMAN, Loyola Marymount College,
Los Angeles, CA, Campus Rabbi/Director of Jewish
Student Life


We're pleased to announce that Sara Sapadin ('07)

will be volunteering with the CCAR as the RavBlog member coordinator. Sara will be working
with CCAR communications staff on recruiting colleagues to write for RavBlog.
If you're interested in contributing a blog to RavBlog and would like to learn more, please be in
touch with Sara at or Carly Linden at
Be sure to check out RavBlog at and encourage members of your community
to subscribe as well.

Rabbi Scott Looper has been reinstated as a
full member of the CCAR with all conditions of
suspension lifted.
Rabbi Matt Michaels has been reinstated as a
full member of the CCAR with all conditions of
suspension lifted.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016

CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 1
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 2
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 3
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 4
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 5
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 6
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 7
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 8
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 9
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 10
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 11
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 12
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 13
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 14
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 15
CCAR Newsletter Sept - Oct 2016 - 16