Two weeks after our ordination I joined a group of 17 rabbis and Al Vorspan at the CCAR
convention in Atlantic City who responded to a telegram from Dr. Martin Luther King to join
his demonstration to integrate a motel in St. Augustine, FL, which led to our arrest.
After doing graduate work at Columbia University for two years (along with serving a
weekend pulpit in Yorktown Heights, NY), I served as assistant rabbi at Leo Baeck Temple in
Los Angeles for two years, after which I entered Hillel for a long time: 7 years as director of
Hillel at UCLA and 24 years as regional director of Hillel in the Greater Los Angeles area.
During this time I received a Covenant Award for Outstanding Educators and was elected
vice-president (1995-1997) and president of the CCAR (1997-1999) where I shepherded the
Statement of Principles for Reform Judaism (the Pittsburgh Principles) to passage at the
convention in Pittsburgh.
I served on the Editorial Committee for Mishkan T’filah and have done teaching for the CCAR
periodically for several years. From 1999 to 2009 I was Director of the School of Rabbinic
Studies at the Hebrew Union College in Los Angeles, and from 2009 to the present I have
served as Rabbi of the Campus Synagogue there and Director of Spiritual Growth. I teach
courses in Liturgy, Psalms, Homiletics, Musar and Spiritual Awareness, and will continue
doing some of this after I officially retire at the end of the 2014 school year.
I have written and edited On Wings of Awe, a High Holyday Machzor (1985, revised 2011);
On Wings of Freedom, a Haggadah (1989); and On Wings of Light, a Siddur for Shabbat
evening, all published by Hillel and KTAV. The URJ Press published A Vision of Holiness: The
Future of Reform Judaism in 2005, and plans to publish my translation and textual and
spiritual commentary to the Book of Psalms in the next couple of years.
I am a co-founder of Bet Tzedek, the Jewish legal services agency in Los Angeles, and, with
Rabbi Elliot Dorff, the Sandra Caplan Community Bet Din which oversees conversions by
batei din of Conservative, Reconstructionist, Reform and trans denominational rabbis. I was
made an Honorary Woman by the Women’s Reform Network in 1999.
I have been married since 1972 to Carol Levy. We have two daughters, Sarah and Elizabeth,
and are expecting to become grandparents for the first time at the end of March 2014.