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Pastoral and Spiritual Care

Rabbi Diane Tiferet Lakein (she/hers) holds a B.A. in East Asian Studies and International Politics from Princeton University and an M.A. in Anthropology from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Born in San Francisco, she spent time in Stockholm, Sweden as a child and in Beijing, China as an undergraduate. She moved to Germany in the mid-1990s to conduct ethnographic research on anti-racist responses to rising xenophobia – and discovered her passion for Jewish spirituality and education.

Rabbi Diane received a Masters of Jewish Education from Hebrew College and ordination from ALEPH, the Alliance for Jewish Renewal. She most recently served as Jewish Educator in Cologne, Germany (2011-2014), Rabbinic Intern in Freiburg, Germany (2013-2016) and Rabbi of Chawurah Gescher in Freiburg, Germany and of Migwan in Basel, Switzerland (2017-2019). She joined the Religious School staff and the Spiritual Leadership Team at Nevei Kodesh in 2020.

Rabbi Diane is a member of the General Rabbinical Council of Germany – Allgemeine Rabbinerkonferenz (ARK ) – and of Haver, the Rabbinic Council of Boulder, Colorado. She is also a member of OHALAH, the Association of Rabbis for Jewish Renewal. To learn more about Rabbi Diane got to www.rabbiwithin.org

Service and Prayer Leadership

Ba’alat Tefilah (Master of Prayer) Michelle Wolf is a lifelong vocalist with experience in a range of genres: classical, jazz, a cappella, and sacred liturgy. She is most on-purpose when leading Jewish prayer and chant, using her voice and presence to open hearts and help others connect to Source. 

Michelle served as cantor for Nevei Kodesh under our founding spiritual leader, Rabbi Tirzah Firestone, during 11 cycles through the calendar. For her mastery as Jewish liturgist, Michelle was honored with a Certificate of Empowerment by Rabbi Firestone and Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi (z’’l) and granted the titles Ba’alat Tefilah and Shlichat Tzibbur (2011).

Michelle coaches youth in B’nai Mitzvah education and regularly leads services for Shabbat, High Holidays, and other holidays and rituals throughout the Jewish year. CD releases include PrayerSongs with Bat Kol (sacred Jewish music), and Love Café with IRIS (women’s a cappella). For her secular work, Michelle develops educational exhibits with ECOS Communications (https://ecos.us/).

Educated at Stanford University (BA, History), Columbia University’s Teachers College, Middlebury College (MA, French), and Aleph’s Davvenen’ Leadership Training Institute. Ongoing studies include: parenting two young adult sons, ever-deepening relationship with a committed life partner, and the blessings of close family, friends, and community. 

Note: “Ba’alat Tefilah” means Master of Prayer, who leads the congregation.

Rabbi Emerita

Rabbi Tirzah Firestone, Ph.D., our founding rabbi, is now Rabbi Emerita. Reb Tirzah is a renowned teacher, author and Jungian therapist. She speaks and teaches locally and nationally on the topics of spirituality, ancient mystical wisdom for the modern soul, the re‐integration of feminine wisdom into the Jewish tradition, and ancestral healing.   Ordained by Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi in 1992, she is a leader in the international Jewish Renewal movement. 

Her publications include With Roots in Heaven (Dutton, 1998), The Receiving: Reclaiming Jewish Women’s Wisdom (Harper San Francisco, 2003), and Wounds Into Wisdom: Healing Intergenerational Trauma (Monkfish, 2019). She offers workshops on modern applications of ancient wisdom and ancestral healing: how to transform patterns of suffering from our past and bring forth clarity, wisdom, and blessings for ourselves and those who come after us. She also offers workshops, services and teachings locally from time to time.  For more information:  www.TirzahFirestone.com

Executive Director

Dena Gitterman (she/hers) has been Executive Director of Nevei Kodesh since 2004. She previously worked professionally in careers as a Speech Pathologist, Special Education Teacher, Psychotherapist and University Instructor.   She received Maggid Certification from Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi in 1998, focused on lifecycle and ritual leadership.  In addition to her graduate degrees and business studies she has a certificate in Authentic Leadership from Naropa University.

Dena has been involved with Jewish Renewal for over 30 years and feels deeply honored and excited to have the opportunity to work with our terrific staff, energized volunteer and spiritual leadership as well as our vibrant community, to help create joyful, meaningful and cutting-edge Jewish experiences and support caring, inclusive community.

A long-time Colorado resident, she loves spending time outdoors in the mountains, as well as dancing, art-making, storytelling and quirky humor.

Director of Family Life

Hazzan Shayndel Adler (she/hers) is an ordained cantor through ALEPH, the Alliance for Jewish Renewal; is an ordained Kohenet through the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute and also completed ALEPH's Kol Zimra Chant Leader Training and the Davennen' Leadership Training Institute. She has served as a cantor for approximately ten years in Reform, Renewal and Conservative congregations and has been an educator and an administrator in Jewish and secular settings in California for over twenty-five years.

She holds a BA in Liberal Studies/Elementary Education and a Multiple Subjects Teaching Credential from Humboldt State University. She is also a trained Waldorf Educator, a teacher of the School of Uncovering the Voice and is a certified healing practitioner with an emphasis on spiritual healing and sound meditation.

Hazzan Shayndel writes, "I believe in a Judaism that is inclusive, spiritual, nurturing, relevant, renewing, engaging and multigenerational. I am thrilled to be joining a Jewish Renewal community that shares these values!"

Hazzan Shayndel is inspired by the successful experiential religious school curriculum that CNK has in place for our new school year and is looking forward to supporting its ongoing growth and development in a safe and welcoming environment that encourages connection, joy, curiosity, creativity and deep and meaningful learning.

To learn more about Hazzan Shayndel: https://www.shayndeladler.com/

Communications Coordinator and Tech Assistant

mailto:communications@niveikodesh.orgRobert Mayper (he/him) has spent the greater part of his career finding innovative ways to empower those in need. This passion for helping others has manifested in efforts like developing cultural skills with refugees abroad, sourcing hygiene products for those impoverished locally, and has helped blooming creatives navigate making their mark. With a late-found passion for communications, he continues his mission of empowerment by working with people and their communities to help share their stories. He joins Nevei Kodesh coming from the Denver Journalism and Marketing world where he focused on music and visual arts. With his mixed background, Robert aims to help this congregation to spread their message to the world. 

Administrative Assistant

Mariana Grosz (she/hers)  has been involved with Jewish communities since childhood. Originally from Argentina, she co-founded the Jewish Community of Bariloche, a small ski town in Patagonia which at the time had only 30 Jewish families. In 2002, she immigrated to the U.S. with her husband and two teenage children, first in Puerto Rico where she served at Temple Beth Shalom as the sole staff person. Later, she was hired by Kehillat Israel in Pacific Palisades, California, where she held several different positions - Religious School Assistant, Communications Associate, and Assistant to the Rabbis. Mariana’s background education is in Fine Arts, and she enjoys teaching and working in her own studio. She also is passionate about music, singing in different choirs, big and small. She lives in Boulder with her husband, Noe, and feels blessed to have both her children and their families close by.

Sat, January 29 2022 27 Shevat 5782