Clergy & Staff

Clergy & Staff

Rabbi

Howard J. Goldsmith
Email
Ext. 1013

As rabbi of Congregation Emanu-El of Westchester, Rabbi Goldsmith takes an intensely personal approach to Jewish leadership. He believes that each of us is on a personal Jewish Journey and that we best actualize our Jewish selves in a warm, supportive, non-judgmental community. As such, he continually fosters a breadth and depth of worship experiences, programs, educational opportunities, and social action initiatives in partnership with fellow clergy, staff, lay-leadership, congregants, and community members. These allow each member of the congregation to forge a personally meaningful Jewish path.

Rabbi Goldsmith is the president of the Westchester Board of Rabbis where he heads the Westchester 2040 initiative to develop a joint rabbinic vision for the future of the Westchester Jewish Community. He also proudly serves as an interfaith chaplain for the Westchester County Police Department and on the faculty of the Reform Movement’s Eisner Camp. His fellowships include: LEAP Fellowship – a joint project of Clal, and the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania; The Jewish Education Project’s Leadership Journey Project; and, UJA-Federation of New York’s Rabbinic Fellowship for Visionary Leaders. The No Pay No Way campaign of Port Chester’s Don Bosco Community Center awarded him their Economic Justice Award. He is active with AJC and is a member of the Central Conference of American Rabbis. Rabbi Goldsmith graduated from Cornell University and was ordained by Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion where his rabbinic thesis compared modern and medieval rabbinic leadership.

He is also a member of several other professional, alumni, Jewish, and Israel advocacy organizations.

Rabbi Goldsmith’s hobbies include cycling, hiking, skiing, cooking, wine, and listening to music. He and his wife, Rabbi Jennifer Goldsmith, of The Jewish Education Project, live in New Rochelle, New York with their children Lev and Talia.

Cantor

Meredith Stone
Email
Ext. 1019

Cantor Meredith Stone brings her magnificent voice to all of our worship experiences. She has been with the congregation since 1985. During her long tenure Cantor Stone has made many special contributions to the life of the congregation in addition to her usual duties of leading worship, teaching and directing choirs. These include the creation of a vibrant women’s study group with annual retreats, creative initiatives in worship, and years of innovative musical programs. A graduate of Brown University, she received a Master’s Degree in voice from the University of Southern California and a Master’s of Sacred Music Degree from Hebrew Union College, where she was also ordained as Cantor. In 2011 Cantor Stone was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Hebrew Union College.

Cantor Stone is an accomplished soprano with a broad range of professional credits as soloist in opera and oratorio. Among them are her operatic debut with the Baltimore Opera in The Magic Flute, and Mahler’s Second Symphony with the Anchorage Symphony. She received fellowships to the Tanglewood and Aspen Music Festivals and was a prizewinner in several vocal competitions including the Bel Canto Foundation National Opera Competition.

Cantor Stone is a member of the American Conference of Cantors, the School of Sacred Music Alumni Association, and Kol Hazzanim, a consortium of colleagues in Westchester, NY.   She can be heard on several recordings of Jewish music including Evening, Morning and Noon: The Sacred Music of Jack Gottlieb. She lives in New York City with her husband, Martin and has two daughters, Mirit and Lila.

Director of Education

Jackie Kurland
Email
Ext. 1015

Jackie is Emanu-El’s dynamic Director of Education. Her love for Judaism stems from the eleven summers that she spent as both a camper and counselor at URJ Eisner Camp. She grew up on Long Island and graduated from Emory University with a degree in Middle Eastern Studies and Journalism. She completed her MA in Experiential Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2014.

Jackie spent several years running the Religious School at Temple Emanu-El in Manhattan. Before that, she ran teen programs at Sid Jacobson JCC and she was a full time educator at Central Synagogue in NYC. She has spent a significant amount of time in Israel between studying abroad in Jerusalem and spending a year volunteering throughout the country after college with OTZMA. 

Jackie lives in Stamford with her husband, Marshall, and her daughters, Sophie and Maddie. In her free time, she can be found hiking, swimming, skiing, and playing board games. She loves traveling and exploring new cultures, whether she is volunteering, studying or just having fun! 

Temple Administrator

Abbie Levitt
Email
Ext. 1018

As Emanu-El’s Temple Administrator, Abbie is responsible for much of the day-to-day management of the synagogue. Since late 2012 when she joined the staff as Rabbi Goldsmith’s assistant, Abbie has had the pleasure of wearing many hats at the temple, sometimes several at a time.

Abbie holds an M.S. in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from Sarah Lawrence College, and a B.A. in Public Communication from American University. Abbie started out in advertising and toy PR, and taught elementary school locally and internationally before joining the temple staff.

Abbie sits on the board of Wayward Ranch Animal Sanctuary in upstate NY, and is also involved in local animal rescue activities. Abbie grew up in Westchester and now lives with her two dogs, Lilly and Monkey, in Dobbs Ferry.

Education Administrator

Victoria Simmonds
Email
Ext. 1012

Victoria serves as the Education Administrator for Emanu-El.

She grew up in England and moved to the United States in 2010 as a professional squash player. While competing on the pro tour and working in a variety of coaching roles in the tri-state area and Los Angeles, Victoria has also pursued a career in marketing and communications. She has worked with brands both big and small across sectors, and spent five years as Marketing and Communications Manager at Rye Country Day School.

Victoria lives in Greenwich, CT with her twins, Stella and Sebastian, and dog Pepé. She still enjoys spending her free time playing squash and competing on the professional doubles tour, as well as cooking, gardening and hiking.

Director of Programming & Engagement

Jane Dubro
Email
Ext. 1021

As Program Director, Jane engages our entire community in meaningful and engaging Jewish experiences. Jane is also an educator for Hineini (7th grade) and prepares students for their B’nai Mitzvahs in our Hebrew School Boot Camp. She serves on the Education Committee of the Holocaust & Human Rights Education Center. Jane is very proud of our Youth Group program’s emphasis on social action. As an educator she is constantly challenging her own teaching style to enhance her students’ learning experience.  Jane lives in New Rochelle with her husband, Alan.

Director of Technology, Facilities & Events

Jamie Villarie
Email
Ext. 1026

As Director of Technology, Facilities & Events, Jamie is responsible for all facilities-related functions, our growing technology needs, event rental management, and generally making sure things run smoothly at Emanu-El.

Jamie has a long career of event planning and execution, technology support, audio/visual production, general contracting, and hands-on facilities work. His broad range of skills will provide us with what we need to improve our space and keep moving forward in the future.

Jamie has lived in Westchester all his life and currently resides in Valhalla, NY with his wife Melissa and their daughters Olivia and Lilah. He loves music, baseball, skiing, and family time.

Senior Accountant

Denise Eisler
Email
Ext. 1014

Denise is responsible for all things financial at Emanu-El, including billing, accounts payable, budgeting and reporting.

Denise earned a BBA in accounting at Pace University and began her career at Touche Ross & Co. as an auditor.  Shortly thereafter, she took a hiatus from accounting to raise her children. Denise was a dedicated volunteer for the PTA, Girl Scouts and the Make-A-Wish Foundation during her time as a stay-at-home mom.

Prior to working at the temple, Denise worked at an advertising agency in White Plains and a law firm in Manhattan.

Denise enjoys gardening, sewing and “fixing things”.  She is a big fan of Jeopardy and is a New York Times crossword puzzle enthusiast. Denise grew up on Long Island and now lives in Scarsdale with her husband, Nathan, and their two dogs, Maya and Sydney.

Administrative Assistant

Dan O’Connor
Email
Ext. 1011

As Emanu-El’s Temple Administrative Assistant, Dan is responsible for aiding the temple Administrator in her day-to-day management of the synagogue.

Dan joined the staff in 2015, having worked for Jewish organizations since 2005. Dan holds a B.A. in Communications from Marist College. He started his career in technical support for the telephone, cable TV and satellite TV industries, but found his calling in Executive Administration. He has supported CEOs of Fortune 500 companies, senators, and governors.

Dan lives in Dutchess county with his wife and son. He enjoys film, historical documentaries, and spending time with his family.

Rabbi Emeritus

Daniel S. Wolk
Email

Rabbi Daniel S. Wolk was our congregation leader from 1967 to 2010. A graduate of Brown University and The Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), he emulates his father, Rabbi Samuel Wolk, who served in Albany, New York, in a tradition of dynamic and committed leadership. Warm, friendly and approachable, Rabbi Wolk is an ardent traveler, amateur archaeologist and author. His commitment to both the congregation and community is testified to by his tenure in our pulpit and as a teacher of Old Testament Bible at The School of The Holy Child since 1973, where he has been honored on numerous occasions. Rabbi Wolk is a member of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR).

Religious Educator Emerita

Marcie Aiuvalasit
Email

Marcie Aiuvalasit was educated in a “Classical Reform” congregation on Long Island. From the time she can remember, she has always wanted to be a teacher. As a student at Adelphi University, she began teaching religious school and has never stopped. She earned a Master’s Degree in Urban Education from Boston College and taught in two Reform congregations in the Boston area. Wherever she found herself, she found a temple in which to apply her talents at teaching. Marcie came to Congregation Emanu-El in 1987, as our Director of Religious Education. Marcie has a certificate as a Family Educator from the Board of Jewish Education and completed the two year Leadership Institute conducted by Hebrew Union College and The Jewish Theological Seminary. She is an active member of the National Association of Temple Educators (NATE).