Rabbi Amy Small
Rabbi Amy Joy Small was honored to become the Senior Rabbi of Ohavi Zedek Synagogue of Burlington, Vermont at the start of 2016. Her passion is helping others enjoy meaningful spiritual living through the rich heritage of Jewish wisdom. She is devoted to sharing Jewish ideas, values and practices with seekers from all backgrounds, while nurturing a loving, caring community devoted to repairing the world.
Previously, Rabbi Small worked in Jewish innovation by creating and directing Deborah’s Palm Center for Jewish Learning & Experiences in Morristown, New Jersey. Through Deborah’s Palm Center, Rabbi Small taught and facilitated Jewish experiences for adults, emphasizing questions from our everyday lives, explored through Jewish texts and ideas.
Rabbi Small has served congregations in New Jersey, Michigan and Indiana. She is a past president of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association, where she served on the board for many years. She is a fellow of Rabbis Without Borders and a Senior Rabbinic Fellow of the Shalom Hartman Institute, a Storahtelling Maven, and was awarded a Doctor of Divinity, Honoris Causa, from RRC in 2012.
She recently served as Board President of The Partnership for Jewish Learning and Life of the Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest, NJ. Rabbi Small served on the boards of the Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest NJ, the Gottesman RTW Academy and the Board of Governors of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. She was a Vice Chair for the National JNFA Rabbinic Cabinet, and served on many national and local boards for Jewish and interfaith organizations, often representing the Reconstructionist movement. Rabbi Small was previously Dean of Academic Administration and Director of the Education Program at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. Among her varied interfaith activities, she co-taught Building Abrahamic Partnerships at the Hartford Seminary and recently visited Pakistan with the US-Pakistan Interreligious Consortium.
She was ordained from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 1987 and received an M.A. in Hebrew letters, and an M.A. in Education from Villanova University, following a B.S. in Education from Temple University, summa cum laude. Publications include a chapter in A Women’s Haftarah Commentary (edited by Rabbi Elyse Goldstein), and a story in the collection, Three Times Chai: 54 Rabbis Tell Their Favorite Stories (edited by Laney Katz Becker), and a chapter in the collection, Text Messages (edited by Rabbi Jeffrey Salkin.) Her blog, “Raviva” is found at: https://rabbiamyjoy.wordpress.com.
Cantor Steve Zeidenberg
Steve, a native of Toronto, Canada, holds a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology from York University there. A graduate of the H.L. Miller Cantorial School at the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS), he was formally invested as Hazzan and earned a Masters degree in Sacred Music. He also completed 400 hours of chaplaincy training through the Center for Pastoral Education at JTS and worked as a chaplain intern for older adults.
Steve is looking forward to working as part of a collaborative clergy team and engaging congregants by tapping into his vast repertoire of congregational melodies, both contemporary and traditional. He has a longstanding passion for leyning Torah, Haftorah and Megillot, but takes even more pride in empowering congregants of all ages with these and other core synagogue skills. His clinical pastoral education will enable him to be a compassionate presence for OZers in need, and he enjoys teaching and interacting with children.