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Rabbi Onboarding Committee for Bet Haverim

Appointed by the Board of Directors of CBH

Michael Bobell

Originally from Los Angeles (and then Berkeley, San Diego, and Chapel Hill), Michael came to Davis in 1997 where he, his wife Rochelle, and his daughter Rebecca,  and once he was born in 2000, his son Ben, became active in the CBH Community.  He has served in many different roles at CBH, including being the Treasurer, being on the Education and Youth Committee, the Finance Committee, and on the hiring committees for the Executive Director and Director of Education.  He worked as a Disability Consultant, planning, and running programs for a large healthcare organization.   Currently, he is also involved in Medicare counseling and studying classical guitar.

Orit Kalman

Orit Kalman came to Davis in 1994 to study at UC Davis, met her husband, Don, and settled in Davis. The CBH community has always been part of our family life. We have three children who attended the religious school program and celebrated their bnei mitzvah and confirmation at CBH. Don and Orit both served on the Board of Directors and participated in numerous offerings at CBH including adult education and meditation programs. Orit most recently served as the co-chair of the Rabbi Process Team. In her professional life, Orit is a facilitator who works with state agencies on a diverse set of state policies and with communities on local issues.

Sarah Pattison

Sarah Pattison has been a member of Bet Haverim since 1991.  Her first activity was outreach to interfaith families, and she participated in creating the Young Family Shabbat service.  On the Youth committee she assisted in hiring a professional youth group director.  Currently she chairs the Israel Peace Alternatives group which presents programs focused on resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.  

She has always been active in music including being part of the davening chug for our previous rabbi, leading an ensemble for festivals and parties, directing an instrumental orchestra, and solo-singing and playing guitar.  Currently she co-leads the Songleaders which provides music on the fourth Friday of each month.

She is a member of the Third Monday book club, the No-Name Havura, and Rosh Chodesh.

Meryl Rappaport

I grew up in Davis and have deep ties  to CBH. When the Rappaport family moved to Davis in 1956, there was no organized Jewish community. Within a few years the handful of Jews who’d relocated from other parts of the country to this tiny town of 3000 people found each other; my parents are among the Founders of the Jewish Fellowship of Davis (JFD).  I shared the first bat mitzvah in Davis with Sandra Stein (Starr) (of blessed memory), held at the Chestnut Park roundhouse. Everything  at JFD was self-led and depended on our volunteering and creativity, values that engage and motivate me still. 

I attended UC Berkeley and received a BA in Social Welfare with a specialization in gerontology and a Masters in Social Welfare specializing in Administration and Planning.  Later I earned my PhD in Medical Sociology at UCSF.  During my career I worked in all facets of medical social work, home health and health care delivery systems,  including 20 years as the Executive Director for Behavioral Health Services for Mercy Medical Group.  

In 1986 I returned to Davis after 20 years of “adult life” in Boston and the SF Bay Area, and was delighted to find a thriving and much larger Jewish community.  My son, David, attended religious school, and had his Bar Mitzvah and confirmation at CBH.  While Israeli folk dancing in the Social Hall, I also met my husband, Mark Haffer. 

Over the years I’ve been very involved at CBH, serving on a variety of committees and leading/ participating in several ritual art projects.  I’m currently Assistant Director of Shabbat Songleaders, a member of Rosh Chodesh, Social Justice, Leading with A Jewish Heart Steering Committee, and served on the Rabbinic Process Team. 

As a member of the Rabbi Welcome and Onboarding Committee, I am very excited and committed to helping our new rabbi(s) and our congregation embrace each other and mutually evolve, learn and thrive as we journey into this next chapter of our congregation’s life together.

Janet Saunders

Janet has been a member for more than 20 years; she was inspired by her son who was very observant for a short period of time.  She began attending Shabbos services, made friends, served on the Adult Education Committee, the Partnership Committee, the Board, and recruited new partner (and husband) Roy Kaplan who is now on the Hillel Board, chairs the CBH Social Justice Committee and is on the Ritual Committee.  We are regulars at Shabbos morning services; please join us there and also come to lunch.

Robert “Bob” Smith

Bob has been a CBH partner for over 26 years. He has served on the Board of Directors as well as a variety of committees, including Security, Buildings and Grounds, Religious School (now Education and Youth) and Mitzvah Day.  Bob currently enjoys being a CBH song leader, a role he has filled for many years.

Bob is newly retired after a long career in law enforcement. Most of that career was spent with the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department, primarily in command and executive roles. More recently, Bob served as a Senior Consultant with the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training.

Bob and his wife Heidi, a former attorney and a previous CBH Board member, have three daughters. Their oldest is a classically trained pastry chef, their middle daughter is a zoo education specialist, and the youngest is a high school senior. All three of their daughters attended CBH religious school and celebrated their bat mitzvah at CBH.

Pia Spector

Pia Spector, Executive Director at Congregation Bet Haverim, has worked in nonprofit administration for the last 10 years. Pia has a BA in Art History from the University of California, Santa Cruz and a Master of Art History from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Her first job after grad school was as a docent educator at the Hebrew Union College Skirball Museum in Los Angeles. She also taught Art History at West Los Angeles College and developed interactive art history programs for blind and hearing-impaired children through the LA County Museum of Art. 

Pia moved to Sacramento in 1991, raised her children in Roseville and she and her family have been active in the local Jewish community for over almost 30 years. Pia managed a family business for 20 years before she made the commitment to the nonprofit sector. Pia’s position at CBH brings together her passion for education, business administration, Judaism and even, occasionally, the arts.

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