Meet the Kehilla Relationship Managers
Kehilla Relationship Team Leader
Dr. Ray Goldstein is our kehilla relationship team leader, overseeing the KRMs. He also serves as a KRM for some kehillot in the Central district. Ray joined United Synagogue’s staff as the Central District’s interim director in 2010. He already had served the organization in many volunteer positions, capped by four years as its international president. He has been president of two kehillot and sat on the board of a third. He has a long history of service on not-for-profit boards and has developed a keen interest and extensive background in board governance and management. Before joining the staff, Ray taught at Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska for eight years, and he owned and ran a multifaceted technology firm in Rochester, Minnesota. Ray and his wife Jody, an elementary school principal, live in Rochester.
Mindy Block Gordon, our kehilla relationship manager in the Central district, is a birthright Conservative Jew. A lifelong member of North Suburban Synagogue Beth El in Highland Park, Illinois, Mindy went on USY Israel Pilgrimage and was both a camper and staff member at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin. A no-longer-practicing lawyer, she is on the boards of many Jewish organizations. She lives in suburban Chicago.
Metropolitan New York (METNY) District
Linda Sussman, METNY’s kehilla relationship manager, is an architect by training; she has had her own architectural practice and now works with Home Free home, doing pro bono architectural work for disabled people and their families. Linda feels privileged to play a part in strengthening the kehillot of United Synagogue – managerially, organizationally and Jewishly. In her personal life, she is a devoted volunteer and is the past president of her synagogue and the Achot Group of Hadassah. Presently she serves as Sisterhood president. She has three children and a husband who shares her commitment to volunteer work.
Jennifer Stofman is the KRM in the Mid-Atlantic district. Prior to coming to USCJ in 2012, she served as the Program Director and Associate Executive Director at Temple Beth Sholom in Cherry Hill, New Jersey. Jennifer has spent the last 20 years as a Jewish Communal Professional. She has had experience in congregational programming and fundraising, public relations and advertising, membership recruitment and retention, leadership development and both formal and informal Jewish education. Jennifer has served as both a synagogue professional and lay leader, and truly understands the rhythm of congregational life. She enjoys her work with both kehilla professionals and lay leadership as they face the challenges of their ever changing roles. Jennifer earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Jewish Studies and English Literature from Drew University and her Master’s Degree in Jewish Education and Jewish Communal Studies from Gratz College. She is a USY and Camp Ramah in the Poconos alumna. Jennifer lives in Cherry Hill with her husband Eric, a chiropractor, and her two sons Jake and Noah.
Howard A. Goldberg, Northeast district KRM, has been a member of United Synagogue’s staff since 2006. A proud product of the Conservative movement, Howard was active in Tzafon USY during the 1980s, and went on to become a religious school educator and USY/Kadima for his home congregation, Temple Beth-El in Poughkeepsie, New York. From 1995 to 2004 he was the director of youth activities for the New City Jewish Center in our METNY district, and he was part of the team that successfully integrated the kehilla’s formal, informal, and family education programs. In 2004, Howard moved to Albany, New York, to become director of education and youth services at Temple Israel there. Howard graduated from Binghamton University and was a member of the second cohort of Brandeis University’s Institute for Informal Jewish Education. He lives in Albany with his wife Jill and their three sons, Samson, Shore, and Elijah.
Pacific Southwest Region
Laurence Harris is the KRM for the Pacific Southwest Region. He comes to USCJ with extensive experience in synagogue life and both formal and experiential Jewish education, in Day Schools as a Director of Admissions in Phoenix, Arizona and Director of Education in Religious Schools in San Francisco and Lafayette, California. He holds a BA from Queens College, NY, an MA in Education and Public Administration from San Francisco State University, CA, attended Tel Aviv University and received a teaching certificate from Talpiot College in Tel Aviv, Israel. He grew up as an active USY member in Queens, New York and went on Israel Pilgrimage. Laurence is married to Ruth, the Cantor of Pasadena Jewish Center and Temple, and is the proud father of Ariel (15), Talia (13) and Adam (11).
Southeast Seaboard District
Jo-Anne Tucker-Zemlak is the KRM in our Southeast Seaboard district. She has worked for us for 10 years, first as the Seaboard region’s assistant director and interim executive director; later she became the Southeast Seaboard assistant executive director. For the last five years she has also been the coordinator of our HAZAK program for adults 55+, in which capacity she directs the group’s successful trips to Israel. She has more than 30 years of volunteer and professional experience, much of it in membership and volunteer development. Jo-Anne holds a certificate in fund-raising management from Goucher College in Baltimore. She has a background in early childhood education and has completed the Jewish Leadership Institute Training through the Washington, DC, Federation and is a graduate of the Melton Institute. She also successfully worked with the Associated Federations of Greater Baltimore in the mid-1990s to create a grassroots group for Jewish single parents.