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- About Us
Paul Golin, Executive Director
Paul Golin is executive director of the Society for Humanistic Judaism. For nearly two decades, Paul has helped Jewish organizations and movements better understand the key trends affecting North American Jewry, including intermarriage, engagement, disaffiliation, and inclusion. Paul’s writing has appeared in the Forward, the New York Jewish Week, Tablet, and elsewhere. He co-authored the books: 20 Things for Grandparents of Interfaith Grandchildren To Do (And Not Do) To Nurture Jewish Identity In Their Grandchildren (2007) and How To Raise Jewish Children…Even When You’re Not Jewish Yourself (2010). Paul previously served as associate executive director of Big Tent Judaism/Jewish Outreach Institute where he helped pioneer and refine effective engagement techniques. Paul is the white Ashkenazi half of a “Jewpanese” (Jewish/Japanese) Jewish multiracial household. He maintains the Jewpanese page on Facebook and tweets sporadically at @paulgolin. Click here to reach Paul by email.
Miriam Jerris, Rabbi
Rabbi Miriam Jerris has been a member of the Society for Humanistic Judaism and committed to its philosophic principles since 1970. As the Rabbi of the Society for Humanistic Judaism, she provides philosophic, liturgical, ceremonial and organizational support for its affiliates and members. Rabbi Jerris is the co-editor of the liturgical book, Here is Our Light. She is the 2006 recipient of the Sherwin T. Wine Lifetime Achievement Award. She is a former president of the Association of Humanistic Rabbis, the rabbinic association for Humanistic rabbis. Rabbi Jerris holds a Ph.D. in Jewish Studies with a specialization in Pastoral Counseling from Union Institute & University in Cincinnati, Ohio, a Master’s Degrees in Near Eastern Studies from the University of Michigan, and a Master’s Degree in Humanistic and Clinical Psychology from the Michigan School of Professional Psychology. She was ordained by the International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism in 2001 and is the Associate Professor for Professional Development, serving as a mentor for its students. Rabbi Jerris specializes in serving multicultural families and couples, and has officiated at intermarriage ceremonies since 1985. Click here to email Rabbi Jerris.
Jennifer Grodsky, Information Manager
Jennifer Grodsky holds a Master’s of Public Administration from the University of Michigan (Dearborn), and a Bachelor’s in Human Resource Development. She has been with SHJ since 2006. Jennifer is a member of the Congregation for Humanistic Judaism of Metro Detroit, SHJ’s founding congregation. She and her late husband taught in the BT school and their daughters celebrated Bat Mitzvahs there. Married by Rabbi Sherwin Wine in the early 1990s, Jennifer and her family have been long term members and supporters of Humanistic Judaism. Click here to email Jennifer.
Kathy Tschirhart, Administrative Assistant
Kathy Tschirhart is the administrative assistant of the Society for Humanistic Judaism and very happy at SHJ. Kathy graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science Degree in Occupational Safety and Health from Oakland University in Rochester, MI. Click here to reach Kathy by email. She will gladly assist you.
James M. Branum, Humanistic Judaism Magazine
James M. Branum is a member of the SHJ and of Temple B’nai Israel (a reform synagogue in Oklahoma City). His initiation into Judaism came by way of the SHJ’s adoption/conversion program. He is a peace activist and brings that intention to his work as an attorney, seeking to assist members of the US military who are seeking to be discharged early due to reasons of conscience. He is also the author of several articles and two books on progressive legal issues. His educational background include a J.D. from Oklahoma City University School of Law, a bachelor’s degree in theology from Lipscomb University-Austin, and certificates from Anabaptist Mennonite Biblical Seminary and Darshan Yeshiva. He is a member of the National Lawyers-Guild and the Democratic Socialists of America and is a proud step-dad to a teenage son. He loves bicycling, lego building, organic gardening and ham radio (callsign KG5JST). Click here to email James.
Anna Goldberg, SHJ HuJews Coordinator
Anna Goldberg has been a part of the Humanistic Judaism community since elementary school. She attended Sunday school at the Birmingham Temple from elementary school, through middle school and her Bat Mitzvah, and continued in high school where she then became an active student in the youth group. In high school and college she attended Conclave for several years. In the 2015–16 school year she became a Sunday school teacher for the 1st/2nd grade class at the Birmingham Temple and the Kindergarten/1st grade class at Kol Hadash. Anna then attended conclave once more in 2016 but as a chaperone. She has since been a chaperone for the 2017-2019 conclaves.
Anna received her Bachelor of Integrative Studies with a focus in Communication in Leadership from Oakland University in Rochester, MI in the spring of 2015. She is also a 500-hour Registered Yoga Teacher and is an avid traveler. Click here to email Anna.
Sarah Levin, Program Coordinator, Jews for a Secular Democracy (JFaSD)
Sarah Levin is the founder and principal of Secular Strategies, a political consulting firm specializing in the mobilization of nonreligious voters and advocating for secularism in public policy. She worked for the Secular Coalition for America from 2013 through 2019 in various roles, including Director of Grassroots and Community Programs and Director of Governmental Affairs. In 2016, she facilitated the establishment of the first ever Secular Caucus in the Texas Democratic Party and worked with secular Democrats to get three secular policy resolutions incorporated into the party’s platform. Sarah proudly represents the secular community as a Co-Chair on the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) Interfaith Council. Click here to email Sarah.
Lincoln Dow, Community Organizer, Jews for a Secular Democracy (JFaSD)
Lincoln Dow is the Community Organizer of Jews for a Secular Democracy, a pluralistic initiative of the Society for Humanistic Judaism. He is also a member of the Secular Student Alliance’s Board of Directors and a politics student at New York University. A native Houstonian, he’s previously worked in Texas politics and led a student advocacy organization in that state. Lincoln is passionate about secularism, civil and LGBTQ rights, animal rights, and environmental protection. He is Jewish by heritage, an atheist and a humanist, and proud to be a part of the SHJ. Click here to email Lincoln.