A White Plains rabbi replaces a White Plains rabbi as head of the Rabbinical Assembly

Rabbi Julie Schonfeld of White Plains was chosen today to become the next head of the Rabbinical Assembly, the international association of Conservative rabbis.

julie-schonfeld-head-shot2.jpgShe will become the third full-time executive vice president of the RA (and the first woman) on July 1. The group has 1,600 members.

She will succeed Rabbi Joel Meyers, who has led the group since 1989.

Oddly enough, Meyers is also a resident of White Plains. Both he and his successor are members of Temple Israel Center of White Plains.

Schonfeld is a well-known figure in the Rabbinical Assembly, as she has served as its director of rabbinic development since 2001. She’s worked on all aspects of the training and placement of Conservative rabbis. She led a study of female rabbis in 2005 and has worked since then on the career advancement of women clergy.

Schonfeld was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary in NYC in 1997. She served at The Society for the Advancement of Judaism in NYC as senior rabbi from 1996 to 2001 and as director of Synagogue Affairs at the American Jewish World Service from 2001 to 2002.

Gary Stern

Gary Stern covered education in the Lower Hudson Valley for several years during the early 1990s. Now's he back on the beat. He believes that schools are one of the main reasons that people live around here and that educational issues -- from curriculum to financing -- are among the most challenging things that journalists can write about. He continues to be amazed by the complexity of educational jargon. Gary got his B.A. at SUNY Buffalo and his M.A. from the University of Missouri Journalism School (where his master's thesis was about the best ways to cover education). He lives in White Plains with his wife and two sons, who attend public schools.