Rabbi Rick Schechter
A passionate teacher, speaker, writer, and storyteller, Rabbi Schechter brings a wonderful blend of wisdom, warmth, and sense of humor to the congregation and the community. His vision is to inspire and engage us in deep and meaningful connections to Judaism, God, each other, and the world. He became the rabbi of Temple Sinai in 2005, having served for five years as the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Knesset Bamidbar in Lancaster, and for three years as a rabbi of Temple Shalom in Dallas. He was ordained from the Reform Jewish seminary, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, in 1997, where he received the award for best oratory. Rabbi Schechter is active in spiritual development, interreligious dialogue, and creating vibrant and joyful Jewish living. His articles and award-winning sermons have appeared in national publications. In 2017, after 14 years of extensive study, he completed 240 hours of training and received certification in Applied Positive Psychology, a field devoted to the scientific study of well-being and what contributes to human flourishing and optimal functioning. He and his wife April have two children, Evan and Nina.
Cantor Alyssa Rosenbaum
Cantor Alyssa joined our congregation in 2020. She is a graduate of the Academy for Jewish Religion, California and was officially ordained as a Hazzan/Cantor in May 2021. Alyssa grew up the youngest of four in the Northern suburbs of Chicago and always loved attending services and leading an actively Jewish life, which was a large influence on her decision to enter the Cantorate. She attended Lawrence University for her undergraduate degree, where she majored in German and minored in Linguistics, spending extensive time studying German-Jewish history and culture. Moving to Los Angeles in August 2016 afforded her the opportunity to become acquainted with the wonderfully diverse Jewish community of LA, and she has so enjoyed getting to know and interact with many people from across the spectrum in terms of age, affiliation, and background. She has been singing her whole life and has always had a deep love and appreciation for most all types of music; Jewish music holds a special place in her heart. Alyssa began learning guitar upon her enrollment at AJRCA in 2016 and has since written numerous original songs, especially liturgical, and is currently working to produce her debut album of original Jewish music.