The Faculty of Jewish Spiritual Leaders' Institute

Most of our JSLI Faculty are Rabbis who have gone through our program. We are proud to exhibit the depth of knowledge among our alumni. They share their areas of expertise either through classes they create and lead or by presenting material created by other JSLI Rabbis.

Rabbi Craig Mayers

After 15 years of service as a lay leader, educator, musician and mentor, Rabbi Craig Mayers was chosen by his congregation to take the next step and become their Rabbi.  After his ordination from JSLI in 2018, Rabbi Mayers assumed the pulpit of Conservative Temple Beth Sholom, the largest and oldest congregation on Florida’s Space Coast.  Born and raised in the metro New York area, Craig relocated his business and family to Florida in 2002 and immediately began serving the local Jewish community.  He served as a teacher in the Hebrew School, accompanist for Friday evening services, tutored Bnai Mitzvah students, taught Torah and Haftarah reading to adults, regularly served as chazzan and shaliach tzibbur for services, and served on the regular and executive boards of the synagogue before being called to higher service.
Craig and his wife Terry enjoy spending time with their 3 grown sons and 2 semi-grown cats.  Serious Disney fans, Craig and Terry make the most of living nearby to DisneyWorld and visit often.  They also enjoy watching from their backyard as manned and unmanned rockets lift off from nearby Kennedy Space Center.  As a result of living in such a cool place, Craig is especially interested in technology and how modern Judaism reacts and responds to new inventions and innovations.

Rabbi Richard E Perlman

Guest Teacher Rabbi Richard E Perlman

Rabbi Richard E Perlman began the West Bay Community Jewish Center, “WBCJC” to help fill the needs of the traditional Conservative Jewish population of Rhode Island’s West Bay. Prior to this, Rabbi Perlman was Spiritual Leader, Hazzan, Director of Education and Executive Director at Temple Am David, of  Warwick.

Rabbi Perlman received his rabbinic ordination in January 2012 at JSLI and is also a member in good standing and Vice President of the Vaad HaRabbonim D’America, (the American Board of Rabbis). Rabbi Perlman not only received his Yoreh Yoreh S’micha (Rabbinic Ordination), at JSLI and the Vaad, he also has earned a T’udat Mashgiach (Kashrut Supervisor Certification) from the Vaad as well.

Rabbi Perlman, also a Cantor (Hazzan), has been a soloist and a member of duets, quartets, and quintets including “The Cantors Perlman” in several cantorial concerts and worship services throughout the United States and Israel. He has led services at Congregation Beth Israel in Bath, Maine and at Temple Beth David in Narragansett, Rhode Island. He has taught Jewish studies in the South County Hebrew School and has been a visiting lecturer at many senior social organizations as well as the Leisure Club at Temple Emanu-El in Providence. He has served as a guest Judaism lecturer at URI, RIC, New England Technical Institute, LaSalle Academy as well as various other institutions of learning around the state. Furthermore, Rabbi Perlman has been instrumental in planning and leading several highly respected and well attended interfaith services with neighboring faith communities.

Rabbi Perlman serves on the faculty of the Jewish Spiritual Leaders Institute, sits on the board of directors of the Jewish Seniors Agency of Rhode Island, serves as the secretary of the agency and is a member of the Touro Fraternal Association as well as The Rhode Island Board of Rabbis of Greater RI (RIBR) .

He served for over five years as Chairman of the Bureau of Jewish Education of Rhode Island’s Principals Council. He is a past member of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Federation of RI the Rhode Island Bureau of Jewish Education, the RI Holocaust Memorial Museum and the JCC of RI.

Rabbi Richard Perlman and his wife, Catherine “Kit” Perlman, are the parents of Jessica, Michael, Owen and Kristina, and grandparents of Brady and Bryce.

Rabbi Rosalie Osian

Guest Teacher Rabbi Rosalie Osian

Rabbi Rosalie Osian is a Palliative and Spiritual Care Rabbi/Chaplain at Good Samaritan Medical Center in Lafayette, Colorado.  She served previously at Caring Hospice Services, Brooklyn, NY.  In her now 15 years of pastoral service experience, which includes Palliative Care and Bereavement, she has developed a structure for pastoral care called ‘The Five Step Integration’ and  ‘Four Touchstones of Spiritual Strength.’ These elements are used in her techniques and assessments of spiritual needs as well as a guide to caregivers and patients in crisis.

Rabbi Osian specializes in Jewish Pastoral Care Theory, Jewish Medical Ethics at end of life, and Bereavement Counseling. Rabbi Osian graduated from All Faiths’ Seminary, Healthcare Chaplaincy, and received her Rabbinic ordination at Jewish Spiritual Leaders’ Institute.  Among her mentors are  Rabbi Joseph Gelberman, Rev. Paul Steinke, and Rabbi Jeffery M. Silberman.

Rabbi Osian makes her spiritual home at a Conservative synagogue in Boulder, Colorado.

She states that  “A Chaplain’s toolbox has to make room for many things including funerals, memorials, healing services, and mainly, the holy ground of the pastoral visit.  Each moment, I tap into revelation and walk G-D’s sacred path.  It is a privilege and a blessing.”

Rabbi Osian is a guest teacher at JSLI where she instructs on Jewish Pastoral Care Theory.

Rabbi Ellis Griffith

Rabbi Ellis Griffith grew up in a small Jewish community in rural New Hampshire with big dreams of the rabbinate.  After years of teaching religious school and leading youth groups, Ellis found herself working in Management Consulting with her trusty Chumash on the plane for light reading.   Rabbi Griffith continues to work full time in the corporate world and in addition to being ordained with JSLI also holds a PhD in Organizational Leadership focused on Inclusion and Diversity.   Rabbi Griffith lives in Amsterdam and serves as a freelance rabbi as well as working with small Dutch communities on services and lifecycle events.   Ellis and her wife Meredith have four children with them in the Netherlands where they enjoy exploring Jewish history across Europe, travel and sampling global cuisine together

Rabbi Mike Moshe Mymon

Rabbi Mike Moshe Mymon received his rabbinic ordination from JSLI in 2021 and presently is the rabbi of Congregation Sholom, a Conservative congregation in Seal Beach, California.  In addition to the rabbinic duties of the congregation, Rabbi Mymon helps officiate life cycle events for the Jewish Community in Orange County, California.

Born in Israel, Rabbi Mymon came to the U.S. to study aerospace engineering following his military service with the Israel Defense Forces’ paratroopers.   Upon completing his education and becoming a U.S. citizen, Rabbi Mymon began his involvement with the aerospace industry, including the science, design, and manufacturing of aerospace products for the U.S. armed forces, intelligence agencies, NATO, and other U.S. allies.

After a life-long involvement in the different facets of synagogue life, including, but not limited to, teaching, various board positions, and covering for the rabbis when they went on vacations, Rabbi Mymon decided to rekindle an old passion of becoming a rabbi.

Rabbi Mymon and his wife Shelly reside in Orange County, California.  They are the parents of Morgan, Austin, Natalie, and Brian.

Rabbi Shereen Sarick

Guest Teacher Rabbi Shereen Sarick

Rabbi Shereen Sarick played hooky more than any other student in the religious school she attended as a girl. She has since designed, opened, and run Judaic Studies programs in the US and Canada. After twenty years as principal, educator, and consultant in Jewish Education, she is proud to say no one has wanted to skip her classes. Rabbi Shereen also leads tours in Israel, serves on an Interfaith Alliance, all while making time to be a wife, mother, daughter, volunteer, Jewish summer camp “Mom”, substitute high school teacher, dog rescuer, foster parent, triathlete, president of a non-profit rebuilding a school in Nepal, hiker, and skier. She is passionate about eating Jewishly (vegan, bioregional, and eco-friendly), and lives in Aspen, Colorado.

Rabbi Judy Caplan Ginsburgh

Rabbi Judy Caplan Ginsburgh received her Rabbinic ordination from JSLI in 2014. She specializes in creating and conducting life cycle events that are personal, meaningful and spiritual. She was recently certified as a Prepare-Enrich Facilitator helping couples make the most of their dating, engagements and marriages. Thirteen years ago, she founded Central Louisiana Arts & Healthcare, Inc., a non-profit whose mission is to bring innovative arts experiences into hospitals and hospice facilities. www.artsandhealthcare.org Rabbi Judy spends a good deal of her time visiting the sick and singing at the bedside of dying patients.

Rabbi Judy is perhaps best known for her music and work as a cantorial soloist for over 30 years. She has produced a number of award-winning recordings of Jewish music for families and was commissioned by the URJ (Union for Reform Judaism) to write a preschool music curriculum titled My Jewish World. She has sung and conducted Jewish worship services all over the world. For more about Judy’s music, please visit www.judymusic.com

Although Rabbi Judy lives in Louisiana, she travels wherever she is needed conducting services and life cycle events. She is currently employed as the part-time Rabbi at Temple B’nai Israel in Monroe, Louisiana and recently conducted Shacharit services in Kolkata (Calcutta) while on a Jewish heritage tour through India.  Find more about Rabbi Judy at her website www.rabbijudymusic.com

Rabbi Deborah Reichmann

Deborah is a JSLI ordained Rabbi who has hopes of developing new and innovative approaches to interfaith ministry. She is also the newly appointed Executive Director of the Hebrew Free Loan Association of Greater Washington which gives interest-free loans to members of Greater Washington Jewish Community since 1909.

Previously Deborah was on the staff of the Jewish Chaplaincy in the Office of Campus Ministry at Georgetown University. She received both her BA and JD from Georgetown University, and also has a MPH from Johns Hopkins University School of Public Health. Prior to coming to work at Georgetown she spent a decade as a health policy attorney. As such, her primary focus was on public programs, specifically Medicare.

In addition to her professional work, Rabbi Reichmann is also pursuing a Doctorate in Liberal Studies. This interdisciplinary course of study aims to explore the process of religious place making in and with the internet.

Rabbi Deborah helped create the JSLI Code of Ethics and has taught on Abortion.

Rabbi Shammai Engelmayer

Shammai Engelmayer wears several hats—literally and figuratively. He is rabbi of Congregation Beth Israel of the Palisades, located in Fort Lee, N.J.; he has been writing an award-winning column, "Keeping the Faith,"  for The Jewish Standard newspaper since the early 1990s (so far, he has won six American Jewish Press Association awards); and is he is among Northern New Jersey's most popular instructors of continuing adult Jewish education. For several years, he also was the editor of Judaism: A Quarterly Journal of Jewish Life and Thought (the journal, published by the American Jewish Congress, is on hiatus at the moment).

A product of the yeshivah world, Shammai (as he prefers to be called) was ordained in 1967, but chose to pursue a career in journalism before assuming the pulpit, winning several prestigious journalism awards (including the Washington Journalism Center's Thomas L. Stokes Award for National Reporting, and the National Association for Justice's Media Humanitarian Award). He is the author of eight books, most on secular topics, and is at work on several more, all on Jewish topics.

Rabbi Gail Nalven

Guest Teacher Rabbi Gail Nalven

Rabbi Gail F. Nalven was ordained by the Jewish Spiritual Leaders Institute. She holds an MA in Jewish Education from the Davidson School of Jewish Education of the Jewish Theological Seminary where she was a Melton Fellow, and spent a year at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem at Mount Scopus. In addition, Gail has spent several years studying at the Drisha Institute, has attended the Bibliodrama Director’s Intensive Workshop, and regularly attends the Hava NaShira Songleaders’ Intensive. She completed Clinical Pastoral Education training at Beth Israel Hospital in NYC and just completed the Leadership Institute, a 2 1/2 year program of study for synagogue educators led by JTS and HUC-JIR.

Rabbi Nalven has taught in and directed education programs in various synagogue settings across the denominations including Temple Beth Torah in Nyack, Temple Beth Sholom in New City and Synagogue for the Arts in Manhattan. After five years at Temple Shaaray Tefila in NYC, she has joined a large metropolitan synagogue in NYC as an Assistant Education Director.

Rabbi Nalven’s blog Adventures in Tefillah is found at tefillah.wordpress.com . She is coauthor of three Cantor Shoshana Goldberg Mysteries, along with her spouse, Rabbi Dr. Patricia Rudden. Their latest work, Lethal Point, is available on Amazon. Together they live in Greenwich Village with their cats Mazal and Elul and turtles Shlomo HaMech and Apollo and the Bay. | www.rabbigailnalven.com

Rabbi Ronda Wanderman Young

Guest Teacher Rabbi Ronda Wanderman Young

Rabbi Ronda Wanderman Young is a born-and-bred New Yorker living in Virginia, Jewishly bamidbar! Her career has always been in the book business. She became involved in a small Reform congregation, where she started teaching religious school, served as Executive VP on the Board of Directors, and chaired many committees, including Ritual, Education, and Social Action.

Rabbi Ronda has been pursuing Hebrew, rabbinic, and Judaic studies for more than 12 years, and have been a Jewish educator for more than 18 years. She has studied at Hebrew College, AJR and JTS here in the States. She as also been able to go 8 times to study in Israel at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, The Conservative Yeshiva, and Pardes Institute.

She recently completed time at a young, independent, liberal congregation in Fort Mill, SC as their spiritual leader. Rabbi Ronda is thrilled to have finally completed her Rabbinic journey with her January 2013 ordination.

Rabbi Wanderman Young has created a course on The Prophets here at JSLI.

Rabbi Jenn Weinstein

Rabbi Jenn Weinstein is well known here at JSLI and Sim Shalom. She leads Ma’ariv services and Shabbat morning services online for us each week.
She began her life of service as a Synagogue Adminstrator, Education Director and Educator of Special Needs at Congregation Simchat HaLev in Syosset, NY. Simshat HaLev is committed to welcoming all people equally and working toward a time when diversity does not need a definition. With 120 + students under her wing, Rabbi Jenn, was not busy enough!

She was already leading services and functioning in a rabbinical way and was encouraged and supported by congregants, friends and her father, Rabbi Jay Weinstein, to take the step to the Rabbinate.

She became a JSLI ordained Rabbi in January 2014 and is our resident expert on Inclusion. You will find her offering classes and presenting Lunch and Learns here at JSLI.

Rabbi Monte Sugarman

Pastoral Care presented by Rabbi Monte Sugarman. This class explores and defines Jewish Pastoral or Spiritual Care. Bereavement and the stages of loss & grief will be discussed. The value of being a healing presence for the sick and dying is addressed. Other topics include: Jewish healing prayers, Vidui/confession for dying and self-care. We talk about the importance of Jewish spiritual direction and counseling for individuals, couples and families. Some Jewish life cycle issues are discussed

Recommended reading: Jewish Pastoral Care: A Practical Handbook, Edited by Rabbi Dayle A. Friedman, 2nd Edition-Published Jewish Lights 2010

Rabbi Monte Sugarman is co-spiritual leader of “Synagogue Without Walls-Or Chadash” in Saratoga Springs, NY, along with his wife Rabbi Anna Sugarman.  He serves all branches of Jewish orientation and all people officiating Jewish religious services, life cycle events, kabbalah workshops and music programs.  In addition to being a rabbi, Rabbi Sugarman is a chaplain for St. Peters Health Partners in Albany, NY.  Rabbi Monte is a NYS Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and professional musician and songwriter.