Rabbi Transition at Bet Haverim
Learn more about our Key Leadership Opportunities
Please fill out this Statement of Interest in a position on a transition committee or as a CBH Director
View the Listening Session Summary from March.
View the consolidated feedback from our February 2021 community-wide conversations
Download the slide deck from our first Community Engagement sessions.
The above button (or link) takes you to a separate page, where CBH Partners can register for our next transition events. We welcome your feedback at Feedback-rabbiprocess@
The CBH Board of Directors and the Rabbinic Process Team are honored and proud to announce the Rabbi Search Committee Co-Chairs, Robin Kulakow & Rob Egel.
Robin Kulakow joined CBH as a UCD graduate student in 1984. Robin and her husband, Bill Julian, married at CBH and their three children attended religious & Hebrew school, had their B’nai Mitzvahs and confirmations, and participated in the synagogue youth group, DRTY. Robin has served on the CBH Board of Directors and on the Tree of Life Committee. Most recently, Robin served on the hiring committee to select our new Executive Director.
Robin’s professional background includes:
- Co-Founder of Putah Creek Council, serving on their Board for 15 years.
- Founder of Yolo Basin Foundation and leading the effort to create the Yolo Bypass Wildlife Area, serving as their Executive Director for 25 years.
Robin’s skills in finance, human resources, Jewish spirituality and traditions, community connections, public relations/communications and collaboration will be great tools to help her lead the Search Committee.
Robin’s Statement of Interest: “I consider this an honor and am humbled by the Board and RPT’s faith in my leadership skills. This is one of the most important tasks our congregation will undertake. I am looking forward to working with Rob and the Committee.”
Rob Egel and his wife, Dotti, have been members of CBH for 24 years. Their children attended CBH religious & Hebrew school, had their B’nai Mitzvahs, confirmations, and participated in the synagogue youth group, DRTY. Rob served on the CBH Board of Directors for 5 years, managed the Progressive Dinners for 4 years and Friday night onegs for 2 years (both with Dotti), and helped to establish and manage the CBH Men’s Club.
Rob’s professional background includes:
Rob recently retired after 36 years working for the State of California. Rob served as:
- Director of the Office of Legislative Affairs for the State Water Resources Control Board (16 years) and CAL FIRE (3 years).
- Chief of the Office of Strategic Planning and Performance Measurement for the California Conservation Corps (5 years).
- Chief of Regional Administrative Services for the Department of Toxic Substances Control (3 years)
- Senior Fiscal and Policy Analyst for the California Legislative Analyst’s Office (9 years).
Rob’s professional background in finance, human resources, communications, and collaboration, and many years of active participation in CBH will be strong skills to help him lead the Search Committee.
Rob’s statement of interest: “The selection of a new rabbi for CBH is a seminal moment for our community. We need to have a selection process that represents and reflects the diversity of CBH and that will result in a rabbi that will meet the needs of our community and provide the leadership to help meet the challenges we will face in the future. I believe that I can effectively contribute to and help lead the Search Committee in its work and look forward to a successful collaboration.”
- Rabbi Farewell Celebration Committee
- Rabbi Search Committee
- Rabbi Welcome Onboarding Committee
- CBH Board of Directors
- CBH Board Committees
A recording of this information-rich 35 minute session is here.Please submit a statement of interest form by May 1 to advise of your interest in volunteering to serve on any or all of the above! (Further details are included on the form.)
As part of the rabbi transition process, many Haverim participated in one of two community conversation events February 24 and 28. In virtual small groups they answered the question, “What are your hopes for the future of our congregation as we consider opportunities for continuity, growth, and change?”
Participants shared both positive and challenging experiences they have as CBH members, and offered many ideas and opportunities for us to build upon. Members expressed their thoughts about the kind of rabbi that we hope to bring to CBH. The following seven key themes emerged from these small group discussions:
• We strive to be a welcoming, diverse, and inclusive community.
• We value and seek varied spiritual expressions and celebrations.
• It is important to invest and nurture connections among our members, Jews in the
region, other regional organizations, and with Israel.
• We value diverse programing opportunities to meet the different needs of our
• We invest in our youth and future.
• Social action and social justice are an important pillar of who we are as a Reform Jewish
• We value and rely upon our volunteers and lay leaders.
The summary report with detailed appendixes is at this link.
Many thanks to all who participated in this first event. The information will help guide the future of CBH and the content of the application we will be submitting to CCAR when we begin requesting rabbi candidates to consider.
We are beginning Part 2 of our 3-part community engagement process designed to support our journey as we embark on finding a new rabbi, validating our core values, and establishing strategic priorities for CBH. The first Community Conversation sessions provided participants a chance to share information about the rabbinic transition process, and to offer and hear a variety of perspectives. Thanks to the more than 130 Haverim who made the time to share their ideas and passions.
Part 2 of the process is to participate in a small group Listening Session. We will delve deeper into what is important for you at CBH, and what qualities you would like to see in a new rabbi to help us to move forward in that direction. We invite you to make your voice heard. Every partner age 13 and up is invited.
· Wednesday, March 17, 6 – 8 pm
· Sunday, March 21, 4 – 6 pm
Register HERE if you are a CBH Partner. Registered participants will receive an e-mail with the Zoom link from Bet Haverim a few days before the listening sessions. Remember that you’re invited to visit our website for a summary of this process and more information about how this fits together.
In December, the CBH Board announced the creation of a new Rabbinic Process Team (RPT) to help our congregation prepare for the significant transition we’ll experience with Rabbi Greg’s retirement in June, 2022. The Rabbinic Process Team is meeting weekly and making steady progress in developing processes and procedures to ensure the successful selection and hiring of a congregation Rabbi.
Since our formation, the RPT has been making progress on the following activities:
Communications with CCAR: the RPT met with Rabbi Cindy Enger, Director of Rabbinic Placement, to learn about the CCAR process and URJ resources available to CBH through our membership.
Developing a plan of action: the RPT is charting the needed activities to support this process including public engagement, setting up a search committee, and completing a rabbi search application.
Planning a community-wide engagement process: the RPT is developing a process to engage community members in conversations and solicit input to inform the Rabbi search process. CBH members will be invited to weigh in in three key areas:
- Transition: Understand the process that we are undertaking as a community to transition from Rabbi Greg’s tenure to finding a new Rabbi to join our congregation.
- Congregational self-discovery: Consider who we are as a congregation and what is our vision for our future.
- Leadership: Identify the key qualities that we are looking for in a new Rabbi to lead and support our congregation in realizing our vision.
Collaborating with the Strategic Planning Committee: An important component of this process is to define who we are as a community. We are working with the Strategic Planning Committee, chaired by Liz Bader-Natal, to plan and coordinate public engagement.
Thank you for being part of our CBH community.
[This post appeared in our January 14, 2021 E-tone.]
Last month, our beloved Rabbi Greg Wolfe announced his retirement from CBH effective June 2022. Until then, our community will have many opportunities to express our heartfelt gratitude to Rabbi Greg for his many years as our spiritual leader.
To prepare for this significant transition in the Rabbinic leadership of our synagogue, the board has appointed a Rabbinic Process Team co-chaired by Barry Klein and Orit Kalman. Other members are Bonnie Berman, Steven Folb, Jodi Liederman, Marjory Kaplan and Meryl Rappaport.
The team’s scope of work will be to:
- Develop a process for hiring our new Rabbi to ensure that it will be carefully planned, implemented and guided by our Jewish principles
- Research and explore resources that URJ (Union for Reform Judaism) and CCAR (Central Conference of American Rabbis) provide to member congregations for a Rabbinic search
- Organize and implement ways for our Partners to provide input
- Recommend objectives and resources for future Search committee and Transition/Welcome committee
[This post originally appeared in our Dec. 10, 2020 E-tone.]