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Staff

Randi Sher, MAEd, RJE

Director of Education

Randi has been involved with Jewish education for 40 years with almost 35 of those in the South Bay.

She loves the warmth and openness of the Temple Menorah community and finds it to be the South Bay's best kept secret!

Rabbi Selilah Kalev, MAEd, CJE

Preschool Director

Rabbi Selilah Kalev has joined Temple Menorah as Director of its growing Tuvia Preschool. Kalev joins Tuvia to work closely with parents, teachers and synagogue leaders to further improve Tuvia's learning environment for children in the South Bay.

With a strong belief that the ritual-based environment provided by Judaism allows children to thrive, Rabbi Kalev promotes a combination of learning, playing and community connection as a key component of her teaching philosophy. This aligns with Tuvia's mission of enhancing learning and development of young children in a safe and caring Jewish environment.

Kalev's combined passion for Judaism and education led her to not only teach preschool, but also to eventually oversee schools at several synagogues, building widespread support for parent education, as well as holiday and special event curricula. Additionally, she helped create play-based programming, where educators facilitate play in a way that allows students to build the foundation for STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math). Kalev believes that using imagination as a key component of learning enhances brain functions, and helps to translate the abstract into practical, real world learning.

An Alaskan native and the granddaughter of a Protestant minister, Kalev found herself drawn to the values of the Jewish community, where more emphasis is placed on the respectful treatment of others than on pure religious observance. Consequently, she converted to Judaism in college, and after receiving her bachelor's degree in music from the California Institute of the Arts, she earned two master's degrees in Jewish education and Rabbinic studies. She also holds a bachelor's degree in Hebrew letters. She received her ordination from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles in 2003.

Kalev is married to Rabbi Joshua Kalev, who leads Congregation Tikvat Jacob in Manhattan Beach. They have two children, Noa and Jacob.

Katie Kang

Operations Manager

Katie Kang, mother of two (Mason who is 5 years old and Sophia who is 3 years old) was locally born and raised here at Temple Menorah. She completed her Bachelor's Degree in Education and teaching credential from California State University, Long Beach along with a minor in Mathematics. Katie spent her summers in high school and college working as a camp counselor at Camp Menorah, eventually becoming the camp's director. She worked for Tuvia as a teacher and assistant director. In addition, she spent her Sundays teaching Kindergarten Sunday School for Temple Menorah's Religious School. Following her 10 years plus on the Temple Menorah faculty she continued to work with the community.

As the Youth Programs and Seminar Coordinator for The Volunteer Center, South Bay-Harbor-Long Beach, she was responsible for the development and coordination of volunteer youth programs that include developing and expanding a guide to volunteer opportunities for youth, Overseeing the Center's Youth Coalition for National Service Day Events, developing and training youth for the Summer Youth Volunteer Service-Learning Program, coordinating the Center's seminars and workshops for other non-profit agencies in the community, and served as the Disaster Preparedness Representative for the Center in the event of a county-wide emergency or disaster.

As the Regional Director of Volunteer and Youth Services for the American Red Cross, Los Angeles, she was responsible for the cultivation, development, and coordination of over 10,000 youth, young adult, adult, and senior volunteers throughout the Los Angeles Region serving 88 cities within Los Angeles County, Inyo and Mono Counties and the eastern third of Kern County. She lead a team to develop meaningful and impactful volunteer opportunities that provided direct client services, developed and managed a volunteer communication plan, which included recruitment and on-boarding messaging through social media, coordinated a team of volunteers (board and lay leadership) in yearly fundraising initiatives, managed the volunteer budget with various departments stakeholders, created marketing materials for the Region's volunteer programs, developed and managed corporate volunteer partnership programs, coordinated the Regional Volunteer Recognition events and assist in the planning of community events, coordinated the Emergency Spontaneous Volunteer Center during times of disaster and planned and implemented a one week Leadership Development Center camp for 180 Red Cross youth volunteers.

She found her way back to the Temple Menorah faculty in the summer of 2015.

Rabbi Rebeccah Yussman, M.A., MAEd

Director of Adult Education

Rabbi Rebeccah Yussman has been with Temple Menorah for over five years. She works with the Rosenberg Cultural Center, coordinates adult education and community events, and teaches the bnai mitzvah class. Rebeccah was ordained as a rabbi at the Academy for Jewish Religion in Los Angeles. Her son, Matan, is a religious school student and Tuvia alum, and her daughter Miriam is currently loving the Tuvia preschool. Rabbi Rebeccah has worked at dozens of synagogues in the South Bay and across the country and finds Temple Menorah to be warm, welcoming, and inclusive.

Rick Muller, MAEd

Torah Educator & Bar Mitzvah Training

Rick began teaching B'nai Mitzvah 44 years ago, at the age of 14, in San Diego. He found that he loved the detail of the Torah and Haftarah tropes, the intricacies of the musical notes-- and thoroughly enjoyed teaching others about them. He devised a way of highlighting the trope patterns, first by hand, then by computer, using colors to separate the words into groups, enabling easier reading and chanting.

Rick came to Los Angeles to acquire a Master's in Jewish Education at the University of Judaism (now AJU) in 1985. He moved down to the South Bay, teaching B'nai Mtzvah and reading Torah at Congregation Ner Tamid for close to 20 years, and now here at Temple Menorah for over 10 years.

Rick is the proud father of Max and Jesse, both doing well, thank you, in Denver and Orlando.

The boys helped Rick start his graphic novel series, "Angels to Earth," Imagine an illustrated version of the stories in the Torah where the angels appear. Chapter One, "These are Humans" is in the Gift Shop!

See you in Shul

Gwen Lipsey

Accountant

Gwen and her family (Husband Michael and sons Jacob and Liam) have been members since 2010. Gwen received her Bachelors of Science at Arizona State University. She started her accounting career at Price Waterhouse and has worked in accounting and systems at Enterprise Rent-A-Car, DirecTV, and Wells Fargo. After taking a few years to stay home with her energetic boys, she is happy to be working again, helping to build a strong financial foundation within our synagogue.

Jordan Nicolaides

Office Coordinator

Jordan has been working at Temple Menorah for over 4 years now, she started as Rabbi Silver's administrative assistant and has moved up to being our Office Coordinator. She came to us with over 10 of production experience in film and television. Raised in Northern California, Jordan and her husband Jeremy now reside in Redondo Beach with their 1 year old Jason.

Mary Jane Arasheben

Clergy Assistant & Registrar

I've been associated with Temple Menorah since August 2008 when my son started at Tuvia. He ended up staying at Tuvia for a total of 4 years, with his final year in kindergarten here. Additionally I ran the Tuvia Parent Committee for a couple of years. By then, Temple Menorah definitely felt like home. I started working in the TM office in February 2016, and I'm grateful to yet again be an active member of this vibrant community.

Malorie Kole

Tuvia Program Coordinator

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