Interim Rabbi Don Rossoff
Rabbi Don is the Interim Rabbi at Temple Emanuel. His one-year term began July 1, 2018.
Prior to that, he was spiritual leader of Temple B’nai Or in Morristown, NJ, from 1990 – 2015, and was an Associate Rabbi at Temple Sholom, Chicago, from 1981-1990. Rabbi Rossoff served two non-consecutive terms as President of the Morris Area Interfaith Council, was Chair of the MetroWest Rabbinic Cabinet, was on the Board of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, and chaired its Israel Committee, Resolutions Committee, and 2009 Israel Convention. He received the “Ohev Yisrael Award – Lover of Israel” by the national Association of Reform Zionists of America Rabbinic Counsel. He also served on the Jersey Battered Women’s Shelter Clergy Partnership Advisory Board and the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Commemoration Committee which awarded him for his dedication to the community.
Rabbi Rossoff was ordained from the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in 1981. He holds Masters Degrees in Hebrew Letters and Hebrew Education from HUC-JIR, a Bachelor of Arts from Northwestern University, and a Bachelor of Jewish Studies from Spertus College of Judaica. He received his certification as an Interim Rabbi from the national Interim Ministry Network and the CCAR and is currently pursuing a Master’s degree in marriage and family therapy from Capella University.
Rabbi Rossoff published a children’s book on spirituality, The Perfect Prayer, and contributed chapters to The Jew in the Modern World: A Documentary History edited by Paul Mendes-Flohr and Jehuda Reinharz, and Chosen Tales: Stories Told by Jewish Storytellers, edited by Peninnah Schram. His latest publications, an article entitled “Visions for a New/Old Reform Yizkor Service” and a poem, “What If…” appeared in the Journal of Reform Judaism and was adapted for use in Mishkan Hanefesh (CCAR). As a musician, he published Adonai Li, a musical setting of Psalm 118:6 (with Cantor Bruce Benson), and the lyrics for “You Can Change the World” (with Cantor Jeff Klepper). He has performed on flute with Debbie Friedman, Craig Taubman, and Mattan Klein, and performed and recorded with “Kol Sasson” and “Kol B’Seder.”
He and his wife, Francine Rossoff, a registered nurse, have four grown children: Marc, Jenna, Ilana and Nathaniel.
“I will walk with and guide this sacred community on a journey that will take them through the loss they will feel from Rabbi Mahler’s retirement and on to the visioning of the future they would choose for themselves.”
– Rabbi Don