Dianne Cohler-Esses recounts her journey from an insular community of Syrian Jews in Brooklyn to becoming a Conservative rabbi, reflecting on generational change, shifting cultures from East to West, and finally asking -- was it all worth it?
Director of Education, Kehilat Romemu
Dianne Cohler-Esses, ordained by JTS in 1995, is the first woman from the Syrian Jewish community to become a rabbi. Since then she has worked in the field of Jewish education. In 2007 she was named one of fifty top rabbis by the Washington Post online. Currently Rabbi Dianne is Director of Education at Kehillat Romemu. She lives in NYC with her husband and their three children.
Carlos Zarur, Ph.D. Candidate at the University of Sao Paulo, Brazil, was born in a Syrian-Sephardic family and has lived in several countries throughout his life. He holds masters degrees in the areas of Comparative Religious Studies, Sephardic Studies, Marranism Studies (Crypto Judaism), Peripheral Jewish Communities, and Culture and Customs of Oriental Jewries. He did two years of Rabbinical Studies at Porat Yosef Sephardic Yeshiv, and taught at the University of Colorado Boulder.
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