Rabbi Debra Landsberg has served Temple Emanu-El since 2001. She is currently a participant (by invitation) in the Rabbinic Leadership Initiative of The Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, and has served as a founding member of the Canadian Association of Muslims and Jews and as the chairperson of the Coalition of Canadian Rabbis for Same Sex Marriage.She received her Bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Harvard University in 1988 (serving as counsellor and co-director of the Harvard/Radcliffe Response Rape Crisis Center). After moving to New York, Rabbi Landsberg worked as the senior educator/counsellor at the CAPABLE Project in the Bronx Psychiatric Center, before being ordained from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (1996).
While in Rabbinic school, she served as Steinhardt Scholar/Rabbinic intern at Vanderbilt University and pastoral counsellor at the Momentum AIDS Project in New York. Rabbi Landsberg served 5 years at The Temple in Atlanta, Georgia before joining us here. She is married to Adam and the mother to triplets Efi, Noa, and Elie.
Rabbi David Seed has been with Adath Israel Congregation since 2003. He has served as the president of the Ontario Region of the Rabbinical Assembly and participated in the Social Action and Resolutions Committees of the international Rabbinical Assembly. He is currently the chair of the Christian Jewish Dialogue of Toronto, a major interfaith organization in our community.
Rabbi Seed received his undergraduate degrees from the Jewish Theological Seminary and Columbia University and was later ordained in 1983 from the Jewish Theological Seminary. The following year, he received his Master’s Degree in Social Work from Columbia University and makes use of that knowledge and skill set each day.
In his congregational and communal work in Toronto, he has taken an active role in engaging people in acts of social justice and the performance of Gemilut Chasadim (deeds of lovingkindness).
He is married to Lori and is the father of three children, each of whom is actively involved in Jewish life
An alumnus of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, Rav Adam graduated from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York City where he worked as a Beit Midrash advisor and synagogue gabbai (secretary). He previously served as the Resnick Rabbinic Intern at Congregation Sons of Israel in Briarcliff Manor, New York and as the Legacy Heritage Fund Student Rabbi of Congregation Shaara T’fille in Saratoga Springs, New York.
Following a year of studying at Bar-Ilan University in Israel, Rav Adam continued his education at the University of Toronto where he received an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree (High Distinction) with a double major in Political Science and Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations.
His community involvement has included TanenbaumCHAT, Hillel of Greater Toronto, and UJA Federation of Greater Toronto. He is currently President of the Rabbinical Assembly – Ontario Region and an executive member of the Rabbinic Cabinet of the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs and the Toronto Board of Rabbis.
Rabbi Miriam Margles (Recording Secretary)
A graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, an alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, and a Jerusalem Fellow at the Mandel Leadership Institute, she teaches in a range of contexts in Canada and the United States. Integrating dynamic Jewish learning, heart-opening spiritual practice, community building, and creative exploration in movement, voice, and writing, she facilitates workshops with various populations, including hospital patients, prison inmates, groups of Jews and Palestinians, and adults and young people of all ages. Her original compositions of Jewish music for prayer are sung by communities throughout North American, Israel, and Europe. Rabbi Margles is also co-founder of Encounter, dedicated to strengthening the capacity of the Jewish people to be constructive agents of change in transforming the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Rabbi Margles earned a master’s degree in Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School and a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in creative writing from York University in Toronto.
Rabbi Ed Elkin (Treasurer)
Rabbi Ed Elkin has served as the spiritual leader of the First Narayever Congregation since 2000. Hailing from Long Island, NY, Rabbi Elkin received his undergraduate degree from Princeton University, and was ordained from the Hebrew Union College in New York in 1990.
He served as a rabbi and teacher in Montreal for several years, and as Hillel Director in Chapel Hill, NC, before moving to Toronto.
His special interests in the rabbinate include Bible commentaries, and the relationship between religion and state in the contemporary world.
Rabbi Elkin is married to Linda Lipsky, a Montrealer who teaches literature at York University.
Rabbi Michal Shekel is the executive director of the Toronto Board of Rabbis and the rabbi of Har Tikvah Congregation, in Brampton, Ontario. Ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, she began her rabbinic studies as a member of the first class of women accepted to the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She has served congregations in Ontario, Boston, and New Jersey. Rabbi Shekel also teaches adult classes in Toronto covering a variety of Jewish topics.
Rabbi Shekel is the original co-editor of the holiday section of myjewishlearning.com. She is also the author of numerous textbooks used in Jewish schools throughout North America and has contributed articles to a variety of Jewish publications such as The Women’s Torah Commentary (ed. Goldstein, Jewish Lights, 2000). Among the honours she has received, Rabbi Shekel is the recipient of a Bronfman Rabbinic Leadership scholarship.
Rabbi Shekel has served as a board member of the Central Conference of American Rabbis and as the chairperson of the Reform Rabbis of Greater Toronto. She has also been a board member of the Canadian Council of Christians and Jews, and the Christian Jewish Dialogue of Toronto as well as on the boards of organizations dealing with Jewish continuity and education, outreach, interfaith issues, racism, and drug and substance abuse.