David, who served as Director for Synagogue Partnership for the Movement for Reform Judaism, has been with MRJ for 22 years having being involved in many areas of work at the Movement including helping over 20 communities recruit their rabbis. During those years he has visited all our communities to lead services and run a huge variety of programmes. He has also been instrumental in establishing strong working relationships with newly-elected chairmen and women. Additionally he has attended many synagogue council meetings and assisted in council training days. With a number of smaller communities he facilitated synagogue weekends leading Shabbat services and study sessions. He was involved in the development of the latest edition of the Reform siddur and for many years has been responsible for placing rabbinic students in our congregations.
In a moving and entertaing speech, Rabbi Professor Tony Bayfield, President of the Movement noted that: “For nearly twenty years, David has gone into congregations – without ego, without a sense of his own importance – seeking only to know what he, and the professionals within the Movement, could do to help and support. Nothing has ever been too much for him or, perhaps, more importantly too small… David coupled his unflagging enthusiasm for offering the support that our congregations need; building an unrivalled knowledge of our congregations and congregational practice – with a bottomless well of information about Anglo-Jewish history and genealogy. The two enthusiastic expertise blend into one and feed each other. If David has favourites, it’s the smallest, most remote congregations – the most needy and the most thirsty for Jewish input.”
After a short break David will begin a new relationship with the Movement as a Community Consultant working with a number of our communities running weekends, lunch and learn sessions and being available on an ad hoc basis enabling MRJ to benefit from his many years of synagogue management experience.