Rabbi Search

The FHJC Rabbi Search Committee

Update, July 2022

  • NOW HAPPENING: Complete RA Placement Questionnaire – The committee is grateful for the support and voice of the congregation participating in both the survey and focus groups.  We now begin the process of taking those thoughts and ideas and formally submitting our application to The Rabbinical Assembly.  We are also discussing how to provide a summary of the survey and focus groups in an appropriate, anonymized method to the congregation.  As always, please feel free to contact the search committee directly at rabbisearch@fhjc.org with any comments or questions you may have.

Update, June 2022

  • COMPLETED: Focus Groups – Join fellow members and congregants to meet with the Search Committee to bring your thoughts about the Rabbi search and learn more about the process.  Thank you for your support and attendance.

Update, May 2022

  • COMPLETED: Congregational Survey – As we prepare to welcome the third Rabbi of the Forest Hills Jewish Center, who are “we” and what are we looking for in a Rabbi?  A congregational survey has been distributed by email as well as mailed home to the members for whom we do not have email addresses.  Thank you for sharing your voice and thoughts. 
  • COMPLETED: Focus Group for Religious School FamiliesSunday morning, May 15 at 9:15 and 11:00 at FHJC: the Committee will be conducting small discussion groups to provide Religious School families with the opportunity to voice their opinions on this important issue.  

President's Letter

Dear Friends, Members of the Forest Hills Jewish Center:

As you all know by now, this past January, Rabbi Skolnik, who has been our teacher and leader for the past 40 years, announced his retirement at the end of June 2023. This leaves us with the very challenging task of finding and engaging a new rabbi, who will hopefully serve us for the next 40 years.

This is not an easy task by any stretch of the imagination and as a congregation, we have not been through this process in over four decades. In Hebrew we say that wisdom comes from experience, but the real wise ones learn from the experience of others. Thankfully, The Rabbinical Assembly and The United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism provide congregations searching for a rabbi with a wealth of information about the process, and many other synagogues that have successfully completed a Rabbi search can share their experiences with us.

I have asked Judy and Matt Beizer to chair a Rabbi Search Committee. Judy has been the chair of our Ritual committee for many years and Matt is a past president who is still very actively involved in the governance of the Forest Hills Jewish Center. I am sure that you will agree with me that this is an excellent choice.  Judy and Matt have assembled a committee that is representative of many of the constituencies of FHJC so that the input into the selection process is as wide and varied as our community is.

We also want you, as a Member of the Congregation, to be involved in the process as well.  You will have the opportunity to provide your input and feedback through completing a Congregational survey, participating in focus groups, spending time with Rabbi candidates when they visit the Shul and providing feedback on those visits.  We will update this page from time to time as the process progresses. Please feel free to contact the search committee directly at rabbisearch@fhjc.org with any comments or questions you may have.

The committee anticipates making a decision by the Spring of 2023, which would leave us enough time for contract negotiations as well as possibly a period of overlap between Rabbi Skolnik and the new Rabbi.

As you see this is a very intense process which will require many hours of work by the committee members. My hope is that you will match their dedication by providing your input to this process whole heartedly and in a timely manner.

I thank you in advance for your cooperation.

Romi Narov

Preliminary Timeline

  • Form Committee, March 2022
  • President’s Letter to Congregation, April 2022
  • First Meeting of Past Presidents Advisory Committee, April 2022
  • Preliminary Discussions with Staff, March 2022 / April 2022
  • Preliminary Interviews with Arms of Center, March 2022 / April 2022
  • Develop Website Page, March 2022 / April 2022
  • Best practices from other synagogues, March 2022 / April 2022
  • Develop Congregational Survey, April 2022
  • Distribute Congregational Survey, May 2022
  • Focus Groups, May 2022 and June 2022
  • Complete RA Placement Questionnaire, July and August 2022
  • Submit Questionnaire, Post Yom Kippur 2022
  • Review Submitted Resumes / Select Candidates for Interviews, September through December 2022
  • Check References, October through December 2022
  • Preliminary Interviews, October through December 2022
  • Secondary Interviews, October through December 2022
  • Host finalists for Shabbat, November 2022 through January 2023
  • Congregational feedback on final candidates, November 2022 through January 2023

Committee Members

Judy Beizer & Matt Beizer* – Co-chairs
Romi Narov, President

Ilana Altman*
Ira Beer
Rabbi David Cavill
Richard Chase
Maureen Dunkel
Jaci Flug
Mitchell Frank
Paul Goldfarb
Rae Kerzner
Temma Kingsley*
Eric Kober
Carrie Leifer
Mark Raphael*
Debra Weil

* denotes past-president

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