July 18, 2019

Moving and Shaking: Temple Adat Elohim names interim rabbi, Brooke Burke-Charvet honored

Rabbi Barry Diamond

Temple Adat Elohim (TAE) has named Southern California native Rabbi Barry Diamond as its interim rabbi. He replaces Rabbi Ted Riter, who ended his 16-year tenure at TAE in May.

Diamond, who grew up in Huntington Beach and Newport Beach, has served in several posts since his ordination at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, including time as interim rabbi in Houston, Texas, at Temple Sinai. He has worked as a part-time rabbi at Congregation Beth Shalom of Bryan/College Station, Texas, and spent 14 years leading the education programs at Temple Emanu-El in Dallas.

TAE, a Reform congregation in Thousand Oaks, announced Diamond’s appointment on July 5. A congregational meeting to approve Diamond was held on July 14. 

From left: Actress and model Brooke Burke-Charvet with Barbara Lazaroff, California Spirit co-founder and restaurant designer. Photo courtesy of Amy Williams

Last month, American actress and model Brooke Burke-Charvet was honored at the 29th California Spirit, an annual gala that raises funds for the American Cancer Society.

During the July 28 event, which was held at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, Burke received the Inspiration Award. In 2012, the multifaceted performer who co-hosts “Dancing With the Stars” shocked fans when she announced that she had been diagnosed with thyroid cancer. That same year, Burke’s cancer was successfully removed. 

Co-founded by film executive Sherry Lansing, restaurant designer Barbara Lazaroff and chef Wolfgang Puck, California Spirit features cuisine, wines, live entertainment and a live silent auction. Since 1984, it has raised millions of dollars in support of research, patient services, early detection and more at the American Cancer Society.

Former “Project Runway” contestant Nick Verreos presented the award to Burke. Additional honorees included John Shaffner, Joe Stewart, Dr. Philomena McAndrew and Dr. Solomon Hamburg.

Delegates of AJWS’ rabbinic trip to India included Rabbi Peter Levi (top row, standing), Rabbi Ron Li-Paz (top row, second from left) and Rabbi Sue Levi Elwell (top row, second from right). Photo by Ruth Messinger of AJWS.

Rabbis Ron Li-Paz, of Valley Outreach Synagogue, and Peter Levi, of Temple Beth El in Orange County, traveled to Lucknow, India, last month on a rabbinic delegation trip. 

American Jewish World Service (AJWS), an international humanitarian nonprofit led by activist Ruth Messinger, organized the trip, which provided the local clergy with the opportunity to join national Jewish leaders and volunteers in reflecting on connections between traditional Jewish teaching, service activities and human rights. It was AJWS’ fourth rabbinic delegation to visit somewhere aboard.

In total, 17 rabbis from across the country — including Rabbi Sue Levi Elwell, the Philadelphia-based founding director of the Los Angeles Jewish Feminist Center — participated in the 10-day excursion. It ended July 31.

“We are deeply gratified to have leaders of Rabbis Elwell, Levi and Li-Paz’s caliber as part of our rabbinic delegation to India,” said Messinger, president of AJWS, in a statement released prior to the trip. “Rabbi Elwell, Rabbi Levi and Rabbi Li-Paz, like the other rabbis traveling with us, are tremendous leaders not only in their synagogues and organizations, but also in their local communities.”

AJWS reports that it has sent more than 400 rabbis, rabbinic students and graduate students in Jewish communal programs on learning and service trips in the developing world since 2004. Upon returning home from these trips, delegates work with fellow alumni to form like-minded communities of Jews interested in global justice.  

Moving and Shaking acknowledges accomplishments by members of the local Jewish community, including people who start new jobs, leave jobs, win awards and more, as well as local events that featured leaders from the Jewish and Israeli communities. Got a tip? E-mail it to ryant@jewishjournal.com.