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Clergy and Staff

Rabbi Karen S. Citrin

Originally from Belmont, MA and a graduate of Brandeis University, Rabbi Karen Citrin was ordained from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles in 2003, and holds a Master’s Degree in Jewish Education from the HUC-JIR Rhea Hirsch School of Education. Rabbi Karen served as Associate Rabbi and Rabbi/Educator at Peninsula Temple Beth El in San Mateo, CA for ten years. In addition to leading worship, lifecycle, and other pastoral roles, Rabbi Karen directed a variety of education programs including a nationally recognized Shabbat family education experience.

Along with Rabbi Micah, Rabbi Karen served as Co-Senior Rabbi at Temple Israel in Tulsa, OK from 2013-2016. They served together as Co-Rabbis and Co-Educators at Temple Beth David from 2016-2021. Rabbi Karen is the first female rabbi to serve at Beth David. Rabbi Karen served on the Board of the Central Conference of American Rabbis and is a rabbinic mentor for the joint CCAR/HUC-JIR mentoring program. She enjoys learning and teaching, being outdoors, reading novels, Jewish music, and strong coffee. Rabbi Karen and her husband, Rabbi Micah, are the proud parents of tenth grade twins, Itai and Yonah.

Rabbi Citrin values the warmth of tradition and the spirit of innovation. She enjoys collaborating with staff and lay leaders to shape welcoming, vibrant Jewish community. She invites you to connect with Judaism through engaging study, uplifting prayer, and acts of loving-kindness to repair our world. 

Brett Hausler, Director of Operations

We are excited to introduce Brett Hausler, Temple Beth David's first Director of Operations, who will start August 8th.

Originally from Vermont, Brett has been working and volunteering in the nonprofit and public sectors his entire life. Most recently, he served as Director of External Relations at BaMidbar, a national nonprofit working to ensure that Jewish youth and young adults have the confidence, skills, and community support to navigate life’s challenges and thrive in the face of adversity. At BaMidbar, Brett oversaw stakeholder engagement and implemented strategic communications, development, and program outreach. He also directed BaMidbar’s admissions process for its wilderness-based therapeutic program.

Prior to BaMidbar, Brett led URJ Crane Lake Camp as its first home-grown Associate Director. In this position, Brett mobilized the daily operations of camp. He was responsible for the creation and oversight of management systems and processes, hiring and training staff, engaging volunteers, marketing and communications, and safety and security. 

Brett’s passions are people and process, leveraging effective, compassionate, and motivational leadership to solve problems and build meaningful relationships. Brett holds a Master of Public Affairs degree with a concentration in Nonprofit Management from Indiana University and a Bachelor of Arts with a Certificate in Public Policy and Administration from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. He is an active volunteer with the Medical Reserve Corps, Jewish Big Brothers Big Sisters of Boston, and the Young Nonprofit Professionals Network. Brett lives in Medford, MA with his wife, Sarah, and their dog, Buddy. When not at his desk, Brett enjoys photography, biking, visiting local breweries, and throwing a frisbee.

Ariana Hershon, Director of Education

We warmly welcome Ariana Hershon, Temple Beth David's new Director of Education.

Ariana grew up in Marlborough, Massachusetts and graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a degree in Political Science. She is a lifelong Jewish summer camp enthusiast, having spent many summers as a camper at Camp Young Judaea in New Hampshire and seven summers on staff at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin. Ariana is an alumna of the Diller Teen Fellows program and Birthright Israel Fellows program and spent time studying and living in Israel at the University of Haifa.

In 2015 Ariana joined the staff at Congregation B’nai Tikvah in Deerfield, Illinois as the Youth Director focusing on teens. Her professional role evolved and grew over seven years in Chicago and at Congregation B’nai Tikvah. She served as the Director of Education, Youth and Family Engagement, overseeing the Religious School, community programming, Shabbat engagement, teens and young families. This journey led Ariana back home to the greater Boston community and now to Temple Beth David! Ariana brings her passion for Jewish community and learning to our Shorashim and Double Chai education programs. 

In her words, “My primary goal is to foster a lifelong love of Judaism for youth in our community. One of my guiding principles in Jewish education is the emphasis and value placed on asking questions. The Torah encourages us to ask questions and we see many instances of our ancestors asking questions of God, each other and themselves. I believe that this is a core value of Judaism and should be present in how we teach our children. I hope that our students delve deeper, want to know the "why" and continue to ask us tough questions. I bring a curious spirit with me to Temple Beth David!” In her free time, Ariana enjoys traveling, playing softball, cooking and spending time with her family!

Lynn Kaminski, Director of Shalom Corner Early Learning Center

Lynn brings a wealth of experience in early childhood education. A Kindergarten teacher in the Wellesley Public Schools for twenty-seven years, Lynn earned her Director 1 and Director 2 licenses from the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care while teaching.Lynn's passion for early education dates from her days as a babysitter and camp counselor in her hometown of Huntington, NY, to a B.A. and an M.A.T. in Child Development from Tufts University. While at Tufts, she worked at the Eliot-Pearson Laboratory School, the Tufts Educational Day Care Center, and at the Open Center for Children in Somerville. During her years in Wellesley, Lynn developed curriculum in many areas focusing on diversity and inclusion. Much of this work involved teaching colleagues, as well. She served on the Social Studies Curriculum Review, helping to create an environment in which conversations about differences were encouraged through literature and classroom discussions. Supporting learning through play is at the core of her educational philosophy. 
 
Lynn and her husband David have been Westwood residents and members of Temple Beth David for twenty years. Their children, Shira and Meyer, are also part of the Temple Beth David family.
  
Lynn is honored to be the first director of Shalom Corner. She is thrilled to be returning to work with toddlers, preschoolers, and the critically important adults who teach them. Building connections with children and families is one of her favorite parts of this work, and Lynn looks forward to meeting all the children and parents of Shalom Corner!

Michelle Piatt, Families with Young Children Coordinator

Michelle Piatt is excited to be stepping into the new role of Families with Young Children Coordinator. She has over two decades of experience working with young children in preschools, public schools, and religious schools in NJ and MA.

Michelle first joined Temple Beth David last year with the opening of the Shalom Corner Early Learning Center as the lead afternoon teacher. After an amazing first year for Shalom Corner, she has been eager to find additional opportunities to contribute to and be involved in our community here at Temple Beth David.

After welcoming twins to their family four years ago while living in a new town, Michelle and her partner, Derek, experienced first-hand how the period of life with children under five can feel isolating. She is enthusiastic about working to ensure that other families with young children feel embraced and connected to Jewish community.

Michelle will partner with Rabbi Karen, Ariana and Lynn to support our Tot Shabbat, holiday celebrations, and Shorashim younger grades, and bring new programming for families with young children. Michelle continues to be a lead teacher at Shalom Corner and looks forward to cultivating lasting relationships with the families of our youngest learners at Beth David.

Musical Leadership

Music is an important part of the Temple Beth David community; we are "a singing congregation."
 
We are excited and honored to welcome Julia Sabra, cantorial student at Hebrew College, to lead our community during the High Holy Days. Throughout the year, in addition to Rabbi Micah, Rabbi Karen will partner with local cantors, cantorial soloists, and song leaders on our bima. We are especially glad to continue to partner with Rabbi Batya Ellinoy, who will join us monthly on Shabbat. We are grateful for talented and spirited pianist, Michael McLaughlin, who accompanies our High Holy Day and some Shabbat services.   

Rabbi Micah Citrin, Adjunct Rabbi

Originally from Albuquerque, NM and a graduate of the University of Oregon, Rabbi Micah Citrin was ordained from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Los Angeles in 2005, and holds a Master’s Degree in Jewish Education from the HUC-JIR Rhea Hirsch School of Education. Rabbi Micah served as Associate Rabbi at Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills, CA, and Director of Community Life and Learning at Kehillah Jewish High School in Palo Alto, CA. Rabbi Micah worked with the clergy team at Peninsula Temple Beth El for three years in San Mateo, CA as Rabbi/Educator, especially focusing on teen engagement. 

Along with Rabbi Karen, Rabbi Micah served as Co-Senior Rabbi at Temple Israel in Tulsa, OK from 2013-2016. They served together as Co-Rabbis and Co-Educators at Temple Beth David from 2016-2021. Rabbi Micah is currently a Jewish Studies teacher at Gann Academy. Rabbi Micah’s interests include running, playing guitar, singing, reading, and being outdoors. Rabbi Micah continues to offer music on the bima during Shabbat and holidays, and teach in our teen program. 

Ashira Stevens, Rabbinic Intern

Ashira Stevens is a candidate for rabbinic ordination at Hebrew College in June 2023.

Ashira is originally from the Midwest and completed her undergraduate education at Indiana University in Marketing and International Studies. After moving to Boston, she discovered her passion for learning Hebrew and anything related to Judaism. In 2005, She completed a Master of Arts in Jewish Studies at Hebrew College where she also helped to develop the online learning programs. Through her experiences teaching in local area synagogues (including Temple Beth David!) and at Prozdor, she fell in love with Jewish education which led in part to her decision to enter rabbinical school. Ashira has studied with Beth David's Cantor Emerita Louise Treitman. 

Ashira lives in Natick with her spouse Aaron and their three children. In addition to enjoying time with her family and friends, Ashira spends her time outside of school reading, playing clarinet and enjoying music, baking, walking through the woods, and practicing Zentangle (a meditative art form). Ashira is looking forward to getting to know the Temple Beth David community!

Leslie Cain Tamarkin, Administrative Assistant 

Leslie has returned to Temple Beth David, where she attended synagogue, Hebrew school, became Bat Mitzvah, and spent many hours with NAWDTY (nee DWEFTY) friends. She is honored to use her extensive experience and qualifications as an MSW, Special Education Advocate and EEC Director, to give to the place that installed her love of Judaism. Leslie supports Shalom Corner as well as the congregation with her work. She is the proud mother of twenty-something year olds - 3 sons and a daughter.

 


 

Roberto Vasconcelos, Custodian

Roberto has worked at Temple Beth David since 2003. You might find him at any hour of the day or night hard at work. He lives in Northborough. When he is not working, he loves to kayak and play tennis.


 

Mon, August 8 2022 11 Av 5782