SOUTH ORANGE, N.J., April 30, 2013 – Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel (TSTI) of South Orange has a great deal to celebrate this spring and is filling the community’s calendar with exciting events to mark an important milestone.

In honor of Rabbi Daniel Cohen’s upcoming 20th anniversary at the synagogue, TSTI has established the Rabbinic Endowment for Jewish Learning that will further the temple’s ability to provide high-quality Jewish education to future generations, regardless of special needs, income, age or ethnicity. The endowment was announced late this winter and has already received commitments totaling more than $500,000.

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“Our members are so appreciative of the innovations and strong sense of community Rabbi Cohen has brought to TSTI in his 20 years of service,” noted Gary Shedlin, the endowment chair. “We want to honor this milestone in a way that will create a lasting legacy and reflect the Rabbi’s longstanding commitment to Jewish education.”


As participation and excitement about the educational endowment grow, the congregation is preparing for the anniversary celebrations:


·         Friday, June 7: Family service and special oneg Shabbat in honor of Rabbi Cohen at 7:30 p.m. After the service, Dr. Carol Meyers, Cohen’s professor at Duke University, will speak to adults on the relevancy of archaeology in today’s political world while the children enjoy a special enrichment program.


·         Saturday, June 15: Elaborate cocktail and dessert reception. Attendees will hear from Rabbi David Ellenson, president of Hebrew Union College and one of Cohen’s professors at rabbinical school. Rabbi Ellenson will address the importance of being and remaining in the progressive movement.


“We have so much longevity to celebrate here at TSTI that goes beyond Rabbi Cohen’s anniversary, so it is fitting to mark this special milestone with something that the community will benefit from for many decades,” said Jay Rice, president of TSTI.

Based in South Orange, New Jersey, Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel is a Reform congregation that welcomes all who wish to participate in and celebrate Jewish traditions and rituals. The temple draws members from many towns including South Orange, Maplewood, Short Hills, Millburn, Livingston and West Orange. It is recognized throughout the region for its innovative programs, worship services, community events, and groups dedicated to a wide array of religious, social and educational interests. For more information, visit or call (973) 763-4116.