Allyson Cole-Strauss (Ahavas Israel, 2017-2019) moved to Grand Rapids with her husband Ken, and two children Benjamin and Rachel. Allyson is a scientist in the Department of Translational Science and Molecular Medicine at Michigan State University. Prior to their move to Michigan, she and her family were active members of Adath Israel Congregation in Cincinnati. Allyson enjoys cooking, reading, traveling, and gardening.
Alison Bernstein (Temple Emanuel, 2017-2019) moved to Grand Rapids from Atlanta, GA in 2016 with her husband and their 2 kids. Alison is an Assistant Professor at the MSU College of Human Medicine in Grand Rapids, where she studies Parkinson's disease. Outside of work, Alison enjoys cooking and playing tennis.
Rick Rinzler (2018-2020): As a member of Temple Emanuel since 1984, I'm deeply concerned about retaining the traditions of Judaism in our youth and families. At the present time, I currently reside on the Operations Board as one of three Vice-Presidents, serve on the Board of Trustees, serve on the Board of Education, and as the head of the Temple Security Committee. In fact, security within our facility is of paramount importance to me, especially since I still have one child (of four) attending Sunday School. Professionally, I wear several hats: orthopedic surgeon for animals (MSU 1972-1983 and 1993-94....GO GREEN!!!!), sworn-in reserve deputy for Lake Co., Class III firearms dealer. In the past, I've taught eight grade for seven years, and assisted with Hebrew classes for the last two years, here at the Temple. Hobbies include everything to do with winter sports, personal fitness, shooting, and of course (for those who know me) piano. But above all, I LIVE for my four kids. Still have questions? Don't be shy....I'm always open for conversation.
Heidi Levy (2017-2019) moved to Grand Rapids in 2016 with her husband and two children. Heidi is an Executive Assistant at Spectrum Health. Prior to their move to Michigan, she and her family lived in Boca Raton, Fl as well as Singapore. Heidi enjoys baking, traveling and spending time with her family.
Rhonda Pappas (2018-2020) moved to Grand Rapids in 1996, immediately got involved with Temple Emanuel and began teaching religious school. Rhonda works at One Stop as an Inside Sales Representative and does taxes at H & R Block during tax season. In her spare time, she enjoys the company of her dog Yoshi and cats, Jake, Simon, Raphael, and Stella.
Elisabeth Rosewall (2018-2020) is a native Californian with a BS in Design from the University of California at Davis and has lived in Grand Rapids since 1985. She has taught both 4-7th grades and Hebrew since 1990 both at Temple and Ahavas as well as in South Haven. She currently focuses on Hebrew and tutors b'nei mitzvah students at Temple Emanuel. Elisabeth has a passion for learning and Jewish education and loves teaching Hebrew classes for adults. She especially enjoys those who learn differently and tries to find the spark in each. She feels blessed by her two children, Emily and Eric, (and the presence of cats in their lives).
Sarah Talboys (2018-2020), her husband Charlie, daughter, and dog live in Kentwood. She works for Foremost Insurance in Web Support Services. She is very thankful to be part of making our school the best it can be.
Paula Miller (2017-2019) has been an active member of Jewish Community for 33 years. Moved here from Chicago when she married her husband Ed Miller the love of her life. Paula and Ed have 3 grown children all married, and 5 grandchildren. Paula is currently a security officer for DK security at the Dept of Human Resources. Paula was involved in the Youth program at Ahavas Israel for many years. Currently she is a vice president of Ahavas Israel chairing the scholarship committee. Paula in her spare time loves playing with her grandchildren, knitting, and reading.
Hasia Monselise (School Director) was born and raised in Israel. She studied art education at Beit Berl College and graduated from SUNY Empire College with a BA in Education and Art. She taught at many schools in the New York area, including Solomon Schechter, Beit Rabban School Stein Yeshiva, Chabad Palisades, and JCC Harrison. Hasia has always loved working with children and believes that educating our future generation is the most rewarding work. She helps them prepare to become Jewish adults. "Our children have the fullest potential to speak Hebrew. I am happy to see children gaining more knowledge every day. That’s what makes me happy and motivated to continue to teach."
Melissa Weinhaus (Assistant Director), a native of Southern California, has a background in elementary education. She moved to Grand Rapids in 2017 with her husband, Brian, and two children. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, reading, and spending time with her many pets.
Rabbi Michael Schadick (Temple Emanuel) has been rabbi of Temple Emanuel since July 2000. He was born in southern New Hampshire and received his Bachelor's Degree from Connecticut College. He received his rabbinic ordination from the Hebrew Union College Jewish Institute of Religion in May 1994. He has served congregations in Orlando, Florida and Plantation, Florida. Rabbi Schadick lives in Cascade Township with his wife Susan and his daughter Shira.
Rabbi David J.B. Krishef (Rabbi, Congregation Ahavas Israel) received ordination as Rabbi from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in 1994. Since then, he has served as the rabbi of Congregation Ahavas Israel, a Conservative synagogue in Grand Rapids, Michigan and blogs at EmbodiedTorah.com. He writes the popular weekly “Ethics and Religion Talk” column for therapidian.com and the Grand Rapids Press and serves on the Spectrum Health Bioethics committee. He has also taught Biblical Hebrew at Grand Valley State University, and Introduction to Judaism courses at Kuyper College and Aquinas College. He is a contributing author for the Judaism chapter of a World Religions textbook (published by Teacher Created Materials) and a set of revisions to the URJ CHAI Judaic curriculum for use in a Conservative or joint Reform/Conservative religious school.