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Organizational Announcement: Rabbi Nicole Auerbach

April 3, 2023 | General News | Messages From Leadership

The congregation received the following message on March 30, 2023.

Dear Central Family,

I am writing to share the bittersweet news that Rabbi Nicole Auerbach has accepted a new position and will be leaving Central at the end of June. She will be joining the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) in an important new position as the Associate Director of Community Building and Leadership. In this new role, she will develop new strategies to grow and enrich the URJ as a network of vibrant Jewish communities. This will include developing new ways to foster meaningful Jewish life amongst unaffiliated Jewish families and individuals, particularly those with marginalized identities or who live in underserved areas of North America. Rabbi Auerbach’s visionary work with Central’s Neighborhood exemplifies the kind of innovative thinking that she will bring to our movement nationally.

Nicole first came to Central in 2014 as a Rabbinical Intern, and following her ordination in May 2016, she joined Central as Rabbi for Small Groups. Then she became Rabbi and Director of Congregational Engagement. Under her leadership, Central significantly increased the scope of our adult engagement work, and she was pivotal to our efforts to move lectures and experiences online during the pandemic. She also had many important programmatic accomplishments, including establishing Central’s CORE Groups, which now include over 700 participants. She co-created our Shabbat morning Mishkan service and played an instrumental role in the design and launch of The Neighborhood. Rabbi Auerbach has also served as a trusted teacher, rabbi, and pastoral presence to many of our families. She will be deeply missed by our community.

After careful consideration, we have decided to bring in an interim head to lead our Adult Engagement team next year, which includes Rabbis Sarah Berman, Hilly Haber, and soon-to-be Rabbi Andrew Mandel. We are pleased to share that Rabbi Joy Levitt has agreed to join Central in this capacity. Rabbi Levitt is well known to our New York Jewish community most recently as Chief Executive Officer of the Marlene Meyerson JCC Manhattan. Her many other accomplishments include being director of J-Lab, a project of the JCC that incubates innovative ideas to strengthen Jewish life, co-editor of the popular “A Night of Questions” Haggadah, and as the founder of the Jewish Journey Project. Rabbi Levitt’s depth of experience will be an incredible asset to the Central community, and we are confident she will be an excellent interim leader for the Adult Engagement team.

I will personally miss Rabbi Auerbach greatly. She has also been my teacher and friend, and I have the utmost respect for her rabbinate. Please join me in sending Rabbi Auerbach off with our gratitude and blessings by joining us on Friday night, May 12, where we will honor her service to our community.

Rabbi Angela Buchdahl
Senior Rabbi

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