Rabbi Nathaniel Ezray has served at Congregation Beth Jacob since 1995. In partnership with the congregation and building on a foundation of activism and engagement, Rabbi Ezray has created a thriving community where Jewish life, commitment, exploration, growth, and joy thrive. CBj is a community where personal story with all of its diversity is lifted up, deep intergenerational connections are created, and love of learning and Israel is fostered. At CBJ there is a constant innovation and seeking to engage each individual in a meaningful relationship with their Judaism. The warmth of CBJ is genuine, and the difference it makes in people's lives is real.
Before coming to CBJ, he served at Temple Emanual in Newton, Massachusetts. He also served as Director of Camp Arazim in Northern California. He received his rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary and his undergraduate degree from UCLA in political science.
Rabbi Ezray has been actively involved in the broader Jewish and civic community. He has served on the Board of the Ronald C. Wornick Jewish Day School, AIPAC, New Israel Fund, Jewish Healing Center and Peninsula Clergy Network. He serves on the Rabbinic Advisory Board of Shalom Bayit and has been active in the synagogue/Federation partnership.
Rabbi Ezray was born and raised in Sacramento, and is blessed with a winderful wife, Mimi, and two children, Emily and Ethan. His joy as a Rabbi is teaching, building community, and fostering relationships that have developed between him and his congregants and the broader community.
Bill Futornick became Ritual Director of Congregation Beth Jacob in 2002, after a distinguished career in the business world. Coming from an East Coast family steeped in Jewish education, the Rabbinate, and Yiddishkeit, Bill coordinates and leads services, personally tutors every Bar and Bat Mitzvah student, teaches people of all ages, leads a variety of programs, and aids Rabbi Ezray in caring for members in need. Prior to his current position, Bill was a Partner at a major executive search firm. Bill holds a Bachelor of Arts in History from Princeton University.
Barbara Powell, Beth Jacob’s Cantor since July, 2007, leads services, teaches music and tefillah, coordinates lay service leaders and Torah/Haftarah readers, and leads the “Journeys” family education program. Prior to CBJ, Barbara taught and led services at congregations in Northern California and the East Coast, taught music privately and at San Francisco public schools, and did extensive social service work. Her singing career spans many genres, and she released the CD “Smooth Road” in 1996. Barbara, who is currently working toward cantorial ordination, holds a Bachelor of Arts in Community Studies from University of California, Santa Cruz, studied in Israel, and grew up on the Peninsula.
H. DAVID TEITELBAUM
Rabbi H. David Teitelbaum is Congregation Beth Jacob’s Rabbi Emeritus and served as Beth Jacob’s Rabbi for 38 years. Following his retirement, Rabbi Teitelbaum was the Executive Director of the Northern California Board of Rabbis. He is a graduate of NYU, received an MA from Teachers College at Columbia University , and received his ordination at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Rabbi Teitelbaum served as a chaplain during the Korean War. A renowned scholar and a strong advocate and activist in support of many causes, including Israel, Soviet Jewry, and civil rights, he and his wife, Robin, are the parents of two sons, Josh and Adam, and they have five grandchildren.
Cantor Hans Cohn was born in Berlin, Germany. In 1939, with the outbreak of the Second World War, his family fled to Shanghai where he remained until 1946. After coming to America in 1947, he attended Hebrew Union College - School of Sacred Music, where he received his Cantor's degree. He also studied voice with Alexander Kipnis at the Manhattan School of Music, and went on to earn his Masters in Education from Stanford University. Hans Cohn served as the Cantor at Beth Jacob for 31 years until his retirement in 1994. In 2002, he received an Honorary Doctorate of Music from Hebrew Union College. In 2006 his memoir, Risen From The Ashes: Tales of a Musical Messenger, was published and is truly story of survival, hope and spiritual renewal. Cantor Cohn currently resides in Palo Alto and is still an active member of CBJ and his community.