Rabbi Nicole Guzik and Rabbi Erez Sherman will jointly succeed Rabbi Wolpe who has served as the congregation’s
Max Webb Senior Rabbi since 1997.
Sinai Temple, one of the largest and most prominent synagogues on the West Coast, announced today that their board of directors has approved Rabbi Nicole Guzik and Rabbi Erez Sherman as the congregation’s new Senior Rabbis. Rabbi Nicole Guzik’s appointment is historical, as she will be the first female senior rabbi to lead the storied synagogue. Along with Rabbi Sherman, Rabbi Guzik will lead Sinai Temple together following the 26-year tenure of Rabbi David Wolpe, who will transition from senior to emeritus rabbi beginning June 30, 2023.
As a married couple working together in their new roles, Rabbi Guzik and Rabbi Sherman will take the helm of the largest conservative congregation west of the Mississippi and lead a multi-generational community that attracts thousands of congregants every week.
“When you’ve spent 25 years in a place, what you care most about are the people who are going to succeed you,” Rabbi David Wolpe said. “We are so lucky and so blessed to have such learned, charismatic, and kind leaders as Rabbis Guzik and Sherman. I feel lucky, and Sinai is blessed, because they’ll make it your home.”
The incoming senior rabbis have a long history with Sinai Temple. Rabbi Nicole Guzik began her tenure as a rabbinic intern in 2006 and has served as a rabbi at the synagogue since 2009. In her current role, Rabbi Guzik supervises Beit Bracha, Sinai Temple’s program for children with special needs and learning differences, and helped launch Sinai Temple’s Mental Health Center, which was underwritten by the Frederic D. Rosen and Nadine Schiff-Rosen Family Foundation. Rabbi Guzik also received her Master’s in Marriage and Family Therapy in 2021.
“Leading Sinai Temple is a professional dream come true,” Rabbi Nicole Guzik said. “Rabbi Wolpe leaves tremendous shoes to fill. We are excited to hit the ground running, continuing to build the treasure that is the Sinai Temple community and ensuring that it remains a place where Jews of all ages and a wide range of backgrounds can find deep spiritual nourishment and growth.”
Since joining Sinai Temple as a rabbi in 2014, Rabbi Erez Sherman has expanded membership and built meaningful relationships within and beyond the Sinai community, including with Los Angeles’ religiously diverse communities. His Rabbi on the Sidelines podcast has attracted wide viewership across the country and has led him to interview some of the biggest names in the sports world. He also initiates Israel education among future rabbis around the United States through the Sinai Temple Israel Center and will pursue cantorial ordination in 2023.
“To lead this incredible congregation is truly a blessing,” Rabbi Erez Sherman said. “Sinai Temple will continue facilitating vital conversations between Los Angeles faith partners while holding the people and the land of Israel at the core of our rabbinate. We are thrilled to lead social action around this city and deepen Jewish connectivity within and beyond our community.”
About Sinai Temple: Founded in 1906, Sinai Temple is the oldest conservative congregation in Southern California and remains one of the largest and most prominent congregations in Los Angeles. In addition to being the spiritual home to thousands of Jewish Angelenos, Sinai Temple provides incredible community resources such as Jewish and secular education, meaningful social gatherings, Israel advocacy opportunities, young professional engagements, membership-based counseling and support services, and more.