Romemu Names First Syrian Jewish Female Rabbi to be Director of Education

August 8, 2012

DianneRomemu named Rabbi Dianne Cohler-Esses to be its new Director of Education. The first woman from the Syrian Jewish community to be ordained, Rabbi Dianne graduated from the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1995 where she earned several fellowships and academic awards for excellence.

“Rabbi Dianne embodies what Romemu is about,” says Executive Director Ilene Sameth. “She broke from her insular community’s expectation to marry at age 18 or 19, leaving Flatbush, Brooklyn to instead study philosophy and comparative religion at NYU.”

Named one of the nation’s top 50 rabbis by The Washington Post online in 2007, Rabbi Dianne has educated teens and adults and successfully administered education programs for numerous pluralist institutions including CLAL (the National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership), the Bronfman Youth Fellowship, The Curriculum Initiative, and UJA Federation.

“At Romemu, we are engaging both adults and youth to connect with Judaism in deeply personal ways,” says founder Rabbi David Ingber. “Rabbi Dianne’s creative, open-minded approach to studying sacred texts will help members to chart their own individual pathways to discovering Jewish spirituality.”

Most recently, Rabbi Dianne has taught adult education and trained teachers at Jewish early childhood programs. She writes regularly for various publications on Jewish values and family life, Jewish ethnicity, and Judaism and disabilities. Rabbi Dianne lives with her husband and three children on Manhattan’s Upper West Side.


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