Rabbi Adina allen
Rabbi Adina Allen, co founder and Creative Director of Jewish Studio Project (JSP) is a spiritual leader, writer and educator who believes in the power of creativity to revitalize our lives, transform Jewish tradition, and bring about a more just world. Weaving together a lifetime of experience in the creative arts together with her rabbinic training, Adina pioneered the Jewish Studio Process - a methodology for integrating Jewish learning, spiritual reflection and creative expression that she has brought to thousands of Jewish educators, professionals and lay leaders across the country. Adina’s writing is widely published and includes her original research on using creative process to generate contemporary midrash. She is a recipient of The Covenant Foundation’s 2018 Pomegranate Prize for emerging Jewish educators. Adina was ordained in Hebrew College’s pluralistic training program in Boston in 2014 where she was a Wexner Graduate Fellow. Adina is married to Jeff Kasowitz, co-founder and Executive Director of JSP. They are proud parents to two amazing young kiddos and one cuddly pup.
Jeff Kasowitz, Co-Founder & Executive Director of the Jewish Studio Project, is a social innovator, musician and community builder. Jeff served as Vice President for the national education reform organization City Year focusing on strategic partnership development. Jeff has taught on leadership and collaboration for organizations including the Harvard Graduate School of Education. A guitarist and singer, Jeff writes and performs his original music inspired by Jewish texts and liturgy and recently released his first album, Arba'im Shanah. Jeff served as a prayer leader and board member of Nehar Shalom Community Synagogue and was Chief Strategist for The Boston Tree Party, an urban agricultural and participatory public art project. A 2017 Joshua Venture Fellow and a past PresenTense Fellow and Environmental Leadership Fellow, Jeff holds MBA and MPH degrees from UC Berkeley.
Maya is a musician, outdoor enthusiast, and the newest member of the Jewish Studio Project team as the Studio Manager. Maya studied classical violin at Whitman College, where she expanded her repertoire to include fiddle, folk, jazz, and more. Maya's second home is Camp Tawonga, where she served as the song leader for four summers. When Maya isn’t at Studio AM, you can find her writing music, spending time in the great outdoors and daydreaming about meeting her favorite female-folk idols. Maya has been involved in the local Jewish community as a music specialist and educator at Temple Isaiah, and song leader for life-cycle rituals.
Cedar Ranney Shapiro
Cedar (they/them) is passionate about creating empowering, participatory ritual spaces and art as a spiritual path. They migrated from Minneapolis to the Bay Area to train in ecofeminist Jewish ritual leadership with the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute in 2014, and were ordained in 2018. While training as a Kohenet, Cedar began to compose music and chant inspired by Jewish life and liturgy. They perform as a storyteller, dancer, live vocal looper and percussionist, and are currently working on a long-term multimedia storytelling project about their Romanian Jewish ancestors. In addition to their ritual leadership, Cedar serves as a Digital Storyteller and teaching artist through their company Sacred Witness Media, and a Jewish wilderness rite of passage mentor with Wilderness Torah. Cedar fell in love with the Jewish Studio Project at their first Bay Area event, and is thrilled to be on the High Holidays team this year.
With gratitude to the rabbis, scholars, cantors, musicians, and community members who have led and coordinated this service since its beginnings in the 1970s, including: Rabbi Leo Abrami, Mayer Goldberg, Rabbi David Winston, Dr. Daniel Matt, Hana Matt, Meryam Zislovich, Rabbi Jay Krause, Cantor Sandra Lipsman, Daniel Brody, Craig Harrison, Rabbi Michael Goldberg,
Cantor Rachel Brott, and Donald and Tobey Brody.
Thank you to Susan Sperber for her gracious coordination of these services.