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Rabbi Chayva Lehrman (she/her)

Rabbi Chayva Lehrman was thrilled to join Congregation Am Tikvah in the summer of 2023. She grew up in the Bay Area, where she was a Diller Teen Fellow, an intern at the San Francisco Jewish Community Federation, and an involved member of Congregation Beth Am. Rabbi Chayva studied Linguistics and Middle Eastern Studies at Wellesley College and subsequently spent several years working in the U.S. House of Representatives and USAID. She was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (LA), where she also received a Masters in Jewish Nonprofit Management from the Zelikow School.  

Contact me at rabbi@amtikvah.org or (415) 664-7374

Listen to some of Rabbi Chayva's sermons by clicking here

Rabbi Danny Gottleib
Rabbi Emeritus

“There are many institutions in Jewish life that make use of Jews, but it is only in the synagogue that Jews are made, their souls nourished, and their identities fashioned.  The synagogue is a place of connection—to the men, women and children who become an extended family, and to the Holy One of Blessing.”                           

– Rabbi Danny Gottlieb

Rabbi Gottlieb received his ordination from the Leo Baeck College in London, England.  He is a graduate of the 4th Rabbinic Cohort of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality, and is a recipient of the RJE (Reform Jewish Educator) degree from the Reform Movement’s Joint Commission on Jewish Education.

Cantor Linda Semi
Cantor Emerita

Cantor Semi served one of our legacy congregations – B’nai Emunah –from June 1991 until she retired in 2017, returning even after that to conduct services, life cycle events, and tutor b’nai mitzvah students. She holds a degree in music education from Syracuse University, a certificate of completion in Cantorial Studies from the University of Judaism (incorporated into the American Jewish University in 2007), and was inducted into the Cantors Assembly in 1997.

Cantor Semi is the first female in a family of cantors and she incorporated many of her family melodies into her pulpit services. While her formal training capitalized on her soprano voice with art song and operatic aria emphasis, Cantor Semi’s style was greatly enriched from mentoring by Cantors Josef Cycowski, z’l, and Allan Michelson, z’l.

Talya K. Brass (she/her)
Executive Director

Talya grew up in San Francisco and has an academic background in religious studies and biological anthropology. She was an active member of the synagogue before taking this position. She enjoys hiking, macrame, and spending time with her family.

Samantha J. Martin (she/her)
Office Manager

Samantha, who goes by Sam, has been in the Bay Area for over 15 years. She became a part of the SF Jewish community when her daughter, Eleanor, start preschool in 2019 at JCC Brotherhood Way. She loved the community so much that, when a position opened up at Am Tikvah, she jumped at the chance to give back. It also doesn't hurt that she works next door to Brandeis, where Eleanor is now in 1st grade. She enjoys knitting, crocheting, and weaving, and occasionally does things not related to yarn.

Cantor Barry Reich (he/him)
Director of Education

Before coming to Am Tikvah, Cantor Barry served for several decades at Peninsula Temple Sholom in Burlingame as cantor, B'nai Mitzvah and t’filah teacher, and choral director. He received his education first at the Yeshiva HaMaarav in LA and later received a Bachelor of Music the SF Conservatory of Music. He received his ordination as Hazzan from the Cantors Assembly of the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS). Since 2006 he has worked as a chaplain for San Mateo County and in 2021 received a Doctor of Music honoris causa from JTS. Cantor Barry lives in Pacifica, has two daughters, Rona (Max) and Bonnie, and one grandson.

Fernando Diaz (he/him)
Facilities Coordinator

A Bay Area Native, Fernando grew up in Santa Clara and loves to spend time with his family and friends. He enjoys singing, trips to parks and Sea Bright Beach where he and his partner play fetch with their pup Jupiter. He has years of experience in Customer Service, Property and Facility Management. 

Anna Bleviss Whitlatch (she/they)
Teacher & Childcare Coordinator

Anna was born and raised in San Francisco with four younger brothers. Teaching is Anna’s passion and she has known she would be a teacher since the age of six. She became a Bat Mitzvah within the community and has remained an active member of the shul since childhood. Anna has served as the childcare coordinator for as long as she can remember, she has been a teacher for Beit Sefer Chadash for the past several years. She majored in Child Development and has held teaching positions at multiple pre-schools and art studios. Anna now teaches glass arts at a nearby high school. She is an artist, loves reading, spending time with friends, going to see live local music, and hanging out with her two dogs. 

Anndo Davis (she/her)
Administrative Assistant

Anndo was born in Dublin Ireland, raised in Nebraska, and spent time in Colorado before moving to San Francsico.  She joined the synagogue staff in February 2020 working three days a week.  Last fall she decided to retire but enjoyed the community and staff so much that she still comes into the office one day a week.  She assists with emails, office work, billing, payments, and helping members as needed.  Anndo spent her business career in the technology sector, focusing on Customer Experience and Contact Center solutions.  Her work in sales and consulting helped Fortune 500 businesses find ways to improve customer experience.  She also worked on Business Development, Vendor/Partner management, and Training.  On a personal note, Anndo loves to golf and is a big fan of the San Francisco Giants and Golden State Warriors.

 

Jonathan Walsh-Wilson (he/him)
Audio Visual Contractor

Robin Tauber (she/her)
Kiddush & Food Artist

Robin Tauber is native to San Francisco and a lifelong member of the synagogue. She has an arts background in many different media. She enjoys making the Am Tikvah Kiddushim festive and beautiful. 

Adam Safford (he/him)
Arrangements

Adam is a longtime community member. He likes travel, collecting national passport stamps and pressed pennies. He enjoys keeping the Jewish calendar and maintaining the Am Tikvah building. He enjoys walking around Lake Merced, delivers for Uber eats, and delivers Irving’s Challah to community members on Fridays. 

 

 

Carlie Algas (she/her)
Audio Visual Contractor

Carlie grew up in a Filipino-American household in the San Fernando Valley. At Brava Theater, she held several roles including technical director, sound engineer, and artist. She enjoys using her acoustic sound knowledge to foster community at Am Tikvah.

Jennifer M. Levine (she/her)
Hebrew Teacher

This is Jenn's second year teaching Hebrew to Am Tikvah youth. She has worked in Jewish education for twenty years and has a doctorate in educational leadership with a focus on disability justice and inclusion. She has been an educator at many institutions throughout the Bay Area, including Temple Israel of Alameda, Midrasha, and JCC of the East Bay. She lives in Alameda, has two grown children, and enjoys riding her bike.

Sun, June 16 2024 10 Sivan 5784