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Clergy & Staff

Robert Gamer, Rabbi

  

Rabbi Gamer came “home” to join Congregation Beth Shalom as our spiritual leader. He is a native of Oak Park, Michigan and a graduate of Berkley High School and the University of Michigan. He earned a Master’s degree in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary and received his ordination from JTS in 2002. Formerly, he was Associate Rabbi at Congregation Beth Judea in Long Grove, Illinois for eight years.

Rabbi Gamer is married to Wendy Miller Gamer, who received her Master’s degrees from JTS andColumbia School of Social Work. They have four children: Maya, Oz, Aryeh and Avishai.  
*Contact Rabbi Gamer at 248-547-7970 or rgamer@congbethshalom.org

David A. Nelson, Rabbi Emeritus

Rabbi David Nelson served Beth Shalom as its spiritual leader for more than 35 years. Throughout his tenure he has been active in the community at large, taking special interest in chaplaincy programs such as Beaumont HospitalDetroit Police DepartmentMichigan State Police andOakland County’s Sheriff Department.  His warmth and informality are hallmarks of his rabbinate. Rabbi Nelson has served as President of the Conservative Rabbis of Metropolitan Detroit, President of Michigan Branch of Rabbis, a member of the Rabbinical Assembly of America, President of the Michigan Region of the Rabbinical Assembly, and Chairman of the Rabbinical Assembly’s Member Committee.  On the Jewish communal scene, Rabbi Nelson has been the director of the Michigan region’s United Synagogue of America, a board member of Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith, Jewish National FundJewish Association for Residential Care, the Fresh Air Society, theHebrew Free Loan Association, the Jewish Community Council, and Jewish Federation Apartments. In the ecumenical sphere, Rabbi Nelson has been active with the Detroit Round Table of the National Conference of Christians, Muslims and Jews. Rabbi Nelson is a native of Bridgeport, Connecticut, a graduate of Brandeis University, and he was ordained by The Jewish Theological Seminary in 1967.

He is married to Alicia, who is the owner of Tradition! Tradition!, a Judaica business. They have three adult children: Harry, Reva, and Deborah.
*Contact Rabbi Nelson at 28-547-7970 or ravdavid@comcast.net

Samuel L. Greenbaum, Cantor Emeritus

“Cantor Sam” Greenbaum has been with Beth Shalom since 1973 and has served as cantor, teacher, bar/bat mitzvah coach, choir director, and more during his tenure. His warmth, humor and caring nature have endeared him to our synagogue family. A native of Jacksonville, Florida, Cantor Greenbaum is a graduate of the Cantors Institute of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He is a member of the Cantors Assembly of America and has served as President of the Tri-State Region Cantors Council and the Cantors Council of Detroit. Cantor Greenbaum is a regular speaker and performer for Jewish organizations – and is the mohel of choice for Jewish families in the metro Detroit area.

Cantor Sam Greenbaum remains a vital member of the Beth Shalom clergy team and will continue to fulfill all of his other responsibilities as prescribed by the congregation, participating at life cycle moments, providing pastoral care, preparing students for their bar/bat mitzvah milestones, helping adults learn how to lead various services, chant Torah and Haftarah, and above all else, always being attentive to the spiritual needs of his congregants.

Cantor Greenbaum is married to Mona, a retired teacher, and they have three adult children: Rabbi Alex, Ilana, and Sheri.
*Contact Cantor Greenbaum at 248-547-7970 or sgreenbaum@congbethshalom.org

Abi Taylor-Abt, Yachad Religious School Director, Rabbinic Intern

Abi Taylor-Abt has been a Jewish educator her whole career. She was born in London, England and finished school in Israel. After attending college in South Africa, Abi began her career in Jewish education working as the teen director at Moshav Neve Ilan, Israel. She worked as a Judaic studies and Modern Hebrew teacher in England, and became the principal of the Religious School of Stanmore and Canons Park Synagogue in London, with managerial responsibilities for programming and curriculum. More recently, she was the Kehillah Programs Director in Boise, Idaho before returning to Israel where she was the Director of Program and Curriculum Development at Alon Community School, Kiryat Anavim. Her passion for Jewish education is shown in her belief that Jewish learning is for everybody. Using music and creativity, Abi thrives on running educational programs that bring Judaism into everyone’s daily lives. Abi and her husband Gideon are excited to be in Michigan with their two youngest children, Yael and Ben.
​​​​​​​*Contact Abi her at yachadrelschool@congbethshalom.org

Our Office Staff

Please contact our friendly staff with any questions.

Sheldon Freilich - Executive Director
     sfreilich@congbethshalom.org

Sheryl Kaminer - Office Manager
     skaminer@congbethshalom.org

Laynie Langnas - Bookkeeper
     llangnas@congbethshalom.org

Mon, December 10 2018 2 Tevet 5779