Shamash Residency

JCC East Bay Shamash Residency

We are thrilled to announce the launch of the JCC East Bay’s Shamash Residency. This is a unique opportunity for a local rabbi, Jewish scholar, or Jewish educator to work with the JCC community. During the 3-4 month intensive residency, a new rabbi or scholar will explore Jewish values, culture, and tradition with our staff, teachers, and community members.

Through the rotating residency, the JCC community will have the opportunity to learn from and with a diverse group of inspiring rabbis and scholars. As a pluralistic space that serves both Jews and the broader community, a Jewish community center can offer multiple perspectives on Jewish life and ideas. Over time, JCC staff, parents, children, and adults of all ages will enjoy a variety of approaches and interpretations to holidays and Jewish thought. Our intention is to develop a cohort of rabbis and scholars that reflect the diversity of the East Bay community.

The Shamash Residency fosters meaningful collaboration between Jewish educators, our staff members, and our vibrant community. Selected scholars will participate in the design of community holiday programs, contribute to a monthly blog, and offer Jewish learning for over 80 staff working throughout Oakland and Berkeley.

Current Shamash Resident

The JCC East Bay is thrilled to announce our third Shamash Resident: Rabbi Dorothy Richman. The Shamash Residency is a special opportunity for a local rabbi, scholar, or educator to offer Jewish learning with the JCC staff and community. Rabbi Richman will be with us as Shamash Resident from June through December, and we are excited to broaden this residency to include more public programs. Stay tuned for details on opportunities to learn with Rabbi Richman.

About Rabbi Dorothy Richman

Rabbi Dorothy Richman serves as the rabbi of Makor Or: Jewish Meditation Center. She teaches Torah widely in the Bay Area, and her rabbinate has been deeply influenced by years of service with AJWS and Bend the Arc: A Jewish Partnership for Justice. She recently released an album of original songs, Something of Mine, largely based on texts from the Jewish tradition. Through SongCycle, which started in October, she is writing and recording a new song video each week in partnership with BimBam: Jewish Videos for Adults, Kids, and Families.

As a rabbi, Dorothy has served congregations Sha’ar Zahav and Beth Sholom in San Francisco, and she has been the Ballanoff Memorial Rabbi in Residence at the UC Berkeley Hillel. She has taught at Kevah, Lehrhaus Judaica, Wexner, and as an educator for ECE Jewish Resource Specialists. She has created many programs integrating prayer, singing and text learning, and is currently serving as one of 18 inaugural Rising Song Fellows. Dorothy teaches Tikkun Middot, an integrated Jewish ethics/mussar course using meditation, chant, and text learning with past classes in San Francisco, Berkeley, Arizona and Israel. Previously at the JCC East Bay, she has led High Holiday writing workshops, and with Shlichat Tzibur Julie Batz and Maggid Jhos Singer, produced and performed two concerts of secular song for Jewish holidays.

A few words from Rabbi Dorothy Richman: "One of the most enticing pieces of this residency is the opportunity to collaborate with other creative and skilled professionals. It is my intention to begin the residency by listening and learning to understand the various needs of the JCC East Bay community and to build relationships. Then, we will work collaboratively to set visions, goals, and to create programs. I love to experiment, try things, learn what could be done better, or sometimes, just differently."



The JCC East Bay is deeply grateful to the Laszlo N. Tauber Family Foundation for their generous grant to pilot the Shamash Residency

To inquire about future residency openings, email: