The Hazon Rabbinical Council (RC) is a mutually beneficial and supportive avenue for Hazon to help religious leaders (rabbis, cantors, rabbinic and cantorial students, and other spiritual leaders of all denominations) who support Hazon’s work and programs within their communities. The RC catalyzes rabbis to use Hazon as a portal for education and action, helping them be leaders in creating a healthy and sustainable community in the Jewish world and beyond.
The Rabbinical Council is co-chaired by Rabbi Joshua Ratner and Rabbi Marc Soloway.
Benefits of Rabbinical Council membership:
- Public recognition on the Hazon website where you are listed as a member of the Rabbinical Council.
- Leverage Hazon as a place to promote your JOFEE-related events. We want to highlight and raise up your work. Send us links to your events and programs and we’ll link to them on our website and calendar, and in some cases promote them in our national newsletter and in social media as well.
- Access to an exclusive, twice-annual Rabbinical Council learning call with guest speakers.
- By request, one free print copy of one Hazon publication of your choice: Food for Thought, Shmita Sourcebook, Green Kiddush Guide, Shabbat Ha’aretz, Fit to Eat, or a pack of 20 Hazon brachot cards.
- Opportunities to teach at Hazon rides, retreats, and conferences
- One-on-one mentoring and support for assembling a team or cohort to attend: Hazon Ride and Retreat, Arava Institute Hazon Israel Ride, any retreat or conference at the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center.
A Note from Rabbi Marc Soloway, Co-chair of Hazon’s Rabbinical Council
I feel proud to be the chair of Hazon’s reignited Rabbinical Council and not because of some grandiose notion of what I can give to Hazon, but rather for the enormous potential that comes from genuine partnership, or brit. I feel that I’ve both given to Hazon, and gained from it, and in chairing the Rabbinical Council, I hope to help to extend that give-and-take to a growing number of rabbis.
There is no doubt that Hazon has played a substantial role in helping me refine my rabbinate and enliven the mission of my shul. As a congregational rabbi in a relatively small community, in a region that deeply cares about issues of sustainability and the environment, Hazon’s excellent programming and thought-leadership have helped me become a better rabbi, and they’ve helped my shul become a better shul. We have a clearer vision. Our zero-waste Kiddush program, our very successful CSA going into its 6th season, and (somewhat remarkably) our more recent involvement with Jewish chicken and goat co-ops have all grown directly or indirectly from our relationship with Hazon. Each spring, our goats have very cute kids and I have learned how to milk their mothers! In our initial training, there were three rabbis, ordained Orthodox, Conservative and Reform, men and women, who did not know the difference between an udder and a teat, now proudly owning our metal milking pails.
Something big is happening in the Jewish world and the so-called Jewish Outdoor Food and Environmental (JOFEE) movement is at its heart. I am not suggesting that everything that happens in the Jewish community connected to food or sustainability only comes from Hazon, but rather that there are some very powerful possibilities through partnership. It is unclear what the future roles of the denominations in Judaism will bring, but very clear that pan-denominational alliances between rabbis and congregations, united by a shared value of creating a more sustainable Jewish world and world for all, is a big part of the future.
My observations about the possibilities for engagement have been wonderfully surprising. For some in our community on the periphery of involvement, our work around food and sustainability has ignited a spark inside them and brought them much more into the center of synagogue life through volunteering and participating. I experienced a similar phenomenon on the two Israel Rides I did with Hazon. Many people who literally “come along for the ride” end up engaging in Israel in a radically new way through the encounters with environmental activists and especially the inspiring presence of alumni of the Arava Institute, who model with passion the merging worlds of grassroots peace-building and commitment to creating a more sustainable Middle East. Just one more example of a partnership that creates deep connections with real issues at the heart of it all.
So, the question is not “what can Hazon do for me?” Nor even, “what can I do for Hazon?” but rather “what can we do for each other? How can we become partners?” Will you join me as a “Riding Rabbi” on a Hazon environmental bike ride this year – you can have a great time, and use it to raise issues and enthusiasm in your community? Would you like to think about launching a CSA in your community, or getting the Hazon Seal of Sustainability certification, or deepening your understanding of shmita – or the Farm Bill? If you are not yet on the Rabbinical Council, join us in this extraordinary journey of hope, growth and transformation.
Rabbi Marc Soloway has served as the rabbi of Congregation Bonai Shalom in Boulder, Colorado since 2004. He has always loved food, perhaps a little too much, and in recent years has thought more deeply about where this food comes from, how it is produced and how all of that fits with deep Jewish obligations and values. Marc has ridden twice in the Hazon-Arava Institute Israel Ride in 2008 and 2010. Marc co-chaired two Hazon Food Conferences on the west coast in 2010 and 2011, he is on the Hazon Steering Team in Colorado as well as the Jewish Life team for the Rocky Mountain Jewish Food Summit in April 2012. Marc was instrumental in bringing Boulder’s first Jewish CSA through Hazon, which is now a collaboration of five synagogues and the JCC with two weekly drop-off sites. Marc is also a proud member of a Jewish goat and chicken co-op across the street from his synagogue. Marc was very active with the Limmud Conference in the UK, serving as co-chair in 1996 and 1997 and he was a founding board member of Limmud Colorado in 2008, which has informed his work with Hazon. He was in Ghana as part of the second AJWS Rabbinic Delegation, volunteering with a grantee in the south, as well as a fellow of the Rabbis without Borders program with CLAL. Marc is also a graduate of the 5th Rabbinic Cohort of the Institute of Jewish Spirituality. Before becoming a rabbi, Marc was an actor, storyteller and massage therapist in his native London and currently is the narrator of a documentary film about the Baal Shem Tov.Boulder, CO
Rabbi Joshua Ratner serves as the director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater New Haven and as Associate Rabbi of the Joseph Slifka Center For Jewish Life at Yale University. Josh served as the rabbi of Congregation Kol Ami in Cheshire, CT, from 2012-2014. Ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary in May 2012, he was a Joseph Neubauer Fellow and also earned a Master’s Degree in Midrash and a Certificate in Pastoral Care. During rabbinical school, Josh worked as a Public Policy Fellow for the Rabbinical Assembly and as a Rabbinic Fellow for the Jewish Council for Public Affairs. He also received training in congregation-based community organizing, traveled to Mexico as part of an American Jewish World Service Rabbinical School Delegation, and was part of the original rabbinical student cohort of CLAL’s Rabbis Without Borders fellowship program. Josh was an attorney for five years prior to entering rabbinical school. Rabbi Ratner believes that Judaism offers unique language and wisdom for addressing environmental stewardship and food justice. He has been inspired by Hazon’s successes, particularly with its food conferences, CSAs, and Shmita consciousness-raising, and looks forward to helping Hazon continue to play a leading role in articulating a compelling vision for Jewish sustainability and immersive experience. Josh is married to Dr. Elena Ratner and they are the proud parents of Dimitri, Eli, Gabby and Sasha.New Haven, CT
Rabbinical Council Members
Rabbi Joshua Ratner and Rabbi Marc Soloway, co-chairs
- Rabbi Katy Allen, Ma’yan Tikvah, Wayland, MA
- Rabbi Steve Altarescu, Reform Temple of Putnam Valley, Putnam Valley, NY
- Rabbi Noah Arnow, Kol Rinah, St. Louis, MO
- Rabbi Elyssa Auster, JCC of Greater Washington, Washington D.C.
- Rabbi Eliot Baskin, Congregation Har Shalom, Greenwood, CO
- Rabbi Annie Belford, Temple Sinai, Houston, TX
- Rabbi Phyllis Berman, Philadelphia, PA
- Rabbi Deborah Bronstein, Congregation Har HaShem, Boulder, CO
- Rabbi Angela Buchdahl, Central Synagogue, New York, NY
- Rabbi Yael Buechler, Solomon Schechter School of Westchester, New York, NY
- Kohenet Sarah Chandler, Jewish Initiative for Animals, Brooklyn, NY
- Rabbi Jennifer Clayman, Congregation Beth Am, Los Altos, CA
- Rabbi Barbara Cohen, Congregation Ahavath Sholom, Lenox, MA
- Rabbi Howard Cohen, Congregation Shirat Hayam, Bennington, VT
- Rabbi Mark Cohn, Temple Emanuel, Winston-Salem, NC
- Rabbi Mark Cooper, Oheb Shalom, South Orange, NJ
- Rabbi Michelle Dardashti, Brown RISD Hillel, Providence, RI
- Rabbi Getzel Davis, Harvard Hillel, Cambridge, MA
- Rabbi Amy Ehrlich, Temple Emanu-El, New York, NY
- Rabbi Bruce Elder, Congregation Hakafa, Glencoe, IL
- Rabbi Jen Feldman, Kehillah Synagogue, Chapel Hill, NC
- Rabbi Tirzah Firestone, Longmont, CO
- Rabbi Michelle Fisher, Minyan Shalem, Brookline, MA
- Cantor Raphael Frieder, Temple Israel of Great Neck, Great Neck, NY
- Rabbi Dara Frimmer, Temple Isaiah, Los Angeles, CA
- Rabbi Sarah Bracha Gershuny, Nevei Kodesh, Boulder, CO
- Rabbi Michael Goldman, Temple Israel Center, White Plains, NY
- Rabbi Jay Goldstein, Beth Israel Congregation, Owings Mills, MD
- Rabbi Fred Greene, Congregation Har HaShem, Boulder, CO
- Rabbi Elliot Holin, Congregation Kol Ami, Elkins Park, PA
- Rabbi Naomi Hyman, Easton, MD
- Rabbi Brian Immerman, Temple Emanuel, Denver, CO
- Rabbi David Ingber, Romemu, New York, NY
- Rabbi Glenn Jacob, Temple Am Echad, Lynbrook, NY
- Rabbi Evan Krame, The Jewish Studio, Rockville, MD
- Rabbi Claudia Kreiman, Temple Beth Zion, Brookline, MA
- Rabbi Ebn Leader, Hebrew College, Newton Centre, MA
- Rabbi Garry Loeb, Temple Beth-El, Monroe, NY
- Rabbi Randall Mark, Shomrei Torah, Wayne, NJ
- Rabbi Todd Markley, Temple Beth Shalom, Needham, MA
- Rabbi Michael Michlin, Agudas Israel, Hazleton, PA
- Rabbi Leon Morris, Shalom Hartman Institute, Sag Harbor, NY
- Rabbi Jay Moses, Wexner Foundation, Columbus, OH
- Rabbi Barb Moskow, Congregation Beth Shalom, Streamwood, IL
- Rabbi Anat Moskowitz, B’nai Torah, Westminster, CO
- Rabbi Linda Motzkin, Temple Sinai, Saratoga Springs, NY
- Rabbi Schachar Orenstein, Corporation of Spanish & Portuguese Jews of Montreal, Montreal
- Rabbi Deborah Prinz, Center for the Study of Ethics and Contemporary Moral Problems at HUC-JIR, New York, NY
- Rabbi Joshua Ratner, Yale Hillel, Woodbridge, CT
- Rabbi Frederick Reeves, KAM Isaiah Israel, Chicago, IL
- Rabbi Baruch Rock, Orot HaCarmel, San Diego, CA
- Rabbi Jonathan Rubenstein, Temple Sinai, Saratoga Springs, NY
- Rabbi Gloria Rubin, Oakland, NJ
- Rabbi Jan Salzman, Congregation Ruach haMaqom, Burlington, VT
- Rabbi Laurence Sebert, Town and Village Synagogue, New York, NY
- Rabbi Jacob Siegel, Eugene, OR
- Rabbi Garth Silberstein, Kenesset Israel Torah Center, Sacramento, CA
- Rabbi Ruth Sohn, HUC-JIR, Los Angeles, CA
- Rabbi Marc Soloway, Congregation Bonai Shalom, Boulder, CO
- Rabbi Aaron Starr, Congregation Shaarey Zedek, Southfield, MI
- Rabbi Chasya-Uriel Steinbauer, The Mussar Institute, Chestnut Ridge, NY
- Cantor Faith Steinsnyder, HUC-JIR, JTS, Mahwah, NJ
- Rabbi Keith Stern, Temple Beth Avodah, Newton, MA
- Rabbi Andrew Straus, Temple Adat Elohim, Thousand Oaks, CA
- Kohenet Gail Tishman, Marlton, NJ
- Rabbi Lawrence Troster, GreenFaith, West Chester, PA
- Rabbi Daniel Victor, Temple Beth-El, Poughkeepsie, NY
- Rabbi Andrew Warmflash, Hewlett-East Rockaway Jewish Centre, East Rockaway, NY
- Rabbi Mary Zamore, Westfield, NJ
- Rabbi Shawn Zevit, Mishkan Shalom, Philadelphia, PA