Desert Outreach Synagogue
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Meet our team
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Rabbi Jules King
Rabbi Jules King was ordained and received his סמיכה S'micha/ordination from the Academy for Jewish Religion California in Los Angeles, CA, along with also receiving his Master's Degree in Rabbinical Studies from AJRCA. Rabbi is a doctoral student at the Claremont School of Theology enrolled in their D.Min., Spiritual Renewal, Contemplative Practice and Strategic Leadership program.
Rabbi Jules is our Founder and also serves as our spiritual leader and teacher, and one who shares in our joys and in our sorrows, giving uplifting and enlightening sermons to encourage, inspire, to help us make informed choices regarding Jewish beliefs and practices along with creating and developing community.
Rabbi Jules holds various other degrees and has spent many years in small to large organizations, Fortune 500 companies along with serving in both healthcare and mortuary science. Rabbi is an accomplished musician, pianist, organist and sang in the nearly 300 voice Gay Men's Chorus of Los Angeles in recent past. However, most importantly he brings with him a sincere devotion, dedication, and passion to his rabbinate and a desire to enhance and improve the lives of those we all interact with to make the world a better place.
Rabbi Jules resides in Palm Springs with his husband, Carlos. Rabbi Jules is also the father of two children. He is active and busy with work, school, life and enjoying his journey with the fast-growing congregation of Desert Outreach Synagogue and the Coachella Valley community! "Come join us! You already belong!"
Cantor in Training Josh Goldberg
Josh Goldberg is a cantorial student, singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, and producer in Los Angeles, California. Born and raised in Dallas, TX, Josh started performing at a young age, participating in musical theatre productions, and playing original music in local venues around town. He attended Arts Magnet High School, where he studied music, and then went on to graduate from the University of Southern California's renowned Thornton School of Music, in the Popular Music program.
Josh released a self-titled EP in 2012 and followed up with a full-length album called ONE, which was released in 2016 and features 13 original songs and settings to Jewish prayers. Josh has toured internationally with artists such as Craig Taubman and Rick Recht and has performed at major Jewish conferences including URJ Biennial, Limmud UK, and BBYO International Convention. In 2017, Josh created his own record label and production company, Kosher Style Records, specializing in producing albums for up-and-coming contemporary Jewish songwriters from around the country. Josh is in his second year at the Academy for Jewish Religion, California, studying to be a Cantor. Josh lives in Sherman Oaks with wife, Andrea, their cat, Jazz, and their dog Frankie.
To hear Josh's music visit: www.joshgoldbergmusic.com
Rabbi Dr. Kenneth A. Emert
Rabbi Dr. Kenneth A. Emert has just retired from his congregation of 22 years at Temple Beth Rishon in Wyckoff, NJ. Rabbi Ken will be leading our Shabbat morning services beginning in October and held the first Saturday of every month - 10:00 am. You will not want to miss this amazing and dynamic man on Shabbat mornings!
Rabbi Emert brings an extensive educational background to our community. After receiving his undergraduate degree in Hebrew Language and Literature from Queens College, Flushing, New York, Rabbi Emert earned a Master of Arts degree in Hebrew literature from Hebrew Union College where he was also ordained in 1977. In 1982, Rabbi Emert received a Master of Social Work from Yeshiva University and in 1991 earned a Doctor of Ministry degree in Jewish-Christian Studies from the University of Dubuque Theological Seminary.
Having led congregations in Smithtown, New York, Rockford, Illinois and Wichita, Kansas, Rabbi Emert has been the senior rabbi at Beth Rishon in Wyckoff, NJ for over 20 years. He is a Senior Rabbinic Fellow of the Hartman Institute in Jerusalem.
In addition to his spiritual leadership, Rabbi Emert has also lectured and taught courses at universities and colleges, led Jewish educational workshops and served as religious school principal. He has served as president of the Wyckoff Clergy Association and continues to actively pursue interfaith dialogue.
Rabbi Emert is a member of both the Central Conference of American Rabbis and The Rabbinical Assembly. He has received honorary doctorates from both the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and from The Jewish Theological Seminary of America.
Susan Miller, Administrative Assistant
Susan Miller grew up on the North Shore of Long Island, NY. She earned her B.A. in Music Education at LIU, C.W. Post Campus. She has sung with the C.W. Post Choral and Madrigal Group and has performed at Lincoln Center and Carnegie Hall. She earned her Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science at the Palmer Graduate School, LIU.
She became Head Research Law Librarian at Touro College School of Law, NY. In 1985, she and her husband moved to Avon, CT where she worked for Attorney General, Joseph Lieberman as his Law
Librarian at the Attorney Generals’ office, Hartford, CT. In 1988, she moved to Newport Beach, CA where she and her husband lived there for 30 years. She became Assistant Director of the Law Library at
Western State School of Law, Fullerton, CA and also worked as a free- lance law librarian for top firms in Los Angeles. Her company was Law Library Management, Inc.
In 2001, she became Medical Librarian at Hoag Hospital, Newport Beach, CA and opened the Health Resource center at Hoag Hospital as Director. Her passion has always been cooking and baking as well as her music. She then became a culinary specialist cooking and learning the many cuisines of Italy, Hawaii and Mexico. If she could, she’d travel
all over the world just cooking and singing! In 2001, she worked as an instructor at Irvine Valley College and Orange Coast College, CA teaching healthy gourmet cooking and wine pairing. She has held classes at the colleges as well as for the City of Newport Beach and Laguna Beach CA. She has just started private cooking classes in Palm Desert. (for more info: call the synagogue office and ask for upcoming classes) In November, 2016, my husband and I, married 36 years, retired to Palm Desert. On April 30, 2017 my husband suddenly passed away. I am very grateful to have met Rabbi King and his wonderful congregation. Looking forward to making new friends and enjoying the things I love to do.
Patty Bialak, Chief Financial Officer
Patty Bialak earned a BS degree in Business with a major in accounting from California State University at Northridge (CSUN) in 1980.
After 5 years as a partner at Zussman, Meyer, & Bialak, CPA’s, Patty formed her own Santa Monica, California firm, Pat Bialak, CPA & Associates, where she specialized in tax and financial reporting for high net worth individuals, corporate tax and financial reporting, Taxation of estates, and trusts including fiduciary court reporting, and forensic investigative accounting.
After another 14 years of practice on her own, she embraced an opportunity to explore the United States, Canada and Mexico in her 40-foot luxury motor coach. Patty sold her accounting practice and took off for a solo 12-year journey on the road to start a new life which brought her to Irvine, California where she continued her love of choral singing and finally to the Coachella Vally.
Patty is happy to share both her accounting skill and love of singing with the Desert Outreach Synagogue as the Chief Financial Offier and member of the choir.
Rich Weissman, Director
Rich Weissman was President, CEO and owner of DMA (headquartered in Oregon) through the company’s recent sale. The company’s focus is on “big data” cloud technology in the financial services industry, utilizing statistical and behavioral database modeling and artificial intelligence for risk management and financial analytics. Rich's work has been noted in The Wall Street Journal, Bloomberg, Business Week, and a multitude of other leading publications. As a prolific researcher and writer, he has authored many articles, research and papers on the topic. Rich had been Marketing Director at Bank of America, US Bank/Bancorp, and National Westminster Bank USA. He completed his Ph.D. coursework at New York University in quantitative analysis and statistics in the social sciences, and he has Master’s degrees in both sociology and psychology, focused on research and analysis. He also completed the Marketing Management Program at Stanford University. Rich holds many academic awards, including Phi Beta Kappa and Psi Chi, and he completed his B.A. Summa Cum Laude at New York University in the social sciences. As part of his graduate training in psychology, Rich worked as an intern in the Psychiatric Division of Hillside-LIJ Hospital, working with adolescents with a variety of psychiatric diagnoses. Rich's thesis focused on multi-variate statistical interactionism as a new paradigm in psychiatry, for understanding and assessing mental illness. Rich is originally from New York, and lived in Israel. He is now retired, and lives in Palm Springs, San Francisco and Black Butte Ranch (Central Oregon) with his husband, J.D. Horn, author of the international, best-selling and highly acclaimed "Witching Savannah" series and other novels. Their daughters are both completing law school and live in San Francisco. Rich contributes to the "Huffington Post", for whom he writes articles with an analytic focus on social and political issues. He also sings in the Portland Gay Men’s Chorus and is involved in a variety of organizations that focus on LGBT and human rights.
Rich (center right) with his husband (center left) in Jerusalem recently with their Israeli guides.
Stu Berger, Director
Stu Berger is originally from Connecticut, where he earned a Master’s Degree at Yale University as a Psychiatric-Mental Health Clinical Nurse Specialist. He worked at Yale Psychiatric Institute and Yale-New Haven Hospital before moving to San Francisco with his husband Tim Leary. There, he worked with homeless veterans at the San Francisco VA Medical Center, as well as at an Outpatient Psychiatric Clinic for San Mateo County. Upon retiring in 2015, he & Tim moved to Palm Springs. He currently is on the Palm Springs Homelessness Task Force and volunteers for the Well in the Desert organization. For the last two years he wrote and secured Grants from the Kaiser Foundation to provide mental health services to the clients of The Well. He is very honored to be a part of Desert Outreach Synagogue.
Tim and Stu (on right)
Dorian McWain, Director of Music
Dorian McWain, 2nd grew up in the Adirondacks of Upstate New York where he studied Applied Music at the local community college. He went on to pursue an undergraduate degree in Music Business at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Fredonia where he became a member of the music fraternity Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia. After college he spent time assisting music programs at two Unitarian/Universalist churches in the Utica, NY area.
In 2008, he relocated to San Diego, CA where he performed several seasons with the San Diego Master Chorale and the Summit Unitarian Universalist Fellowship choir. Several years later he relocated to Palm Springs, CA where he's since been an active member of the music community. Dorian plays oboe and English horn in a few local ensembles including the Desert Winds Freedom Band, Temecula Valley Symphony and the Coachella Valley Symphony.
Dorian is honored to direct the music program at Desert Outreach Synagogue and excited to share the awesome power of music with its members.
Kurt Jordan, Principal Accompanist
Kurt Jordan developed an intense interest in learning the piano after having seen The Phantom of the Opera with his parents at age 10. He studied under the guidance of Joann Algier throughout middle and high school, during which time he discovered a love of music using multiple pianos. This passion was further explored at Azusa Pacific University while studying with Dr. Robert Sage. Kurt performed several recitals of material he arranged for two and three pianos, the recordings of which have received radio play in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Santa Cruz, Boston, Austin, and Beirut. In 2009, Kurt had the honor of performing the West Coast premiere of Alvin Curran's 7.5 hour long piano song cycle, Inner Cities 1-13, as well as the U.S. premiere of movement 14 at Burning Man in 2013.
Kurt graduated from Azusa Pacific University in 2010 with a BA in Music Theory and Composition. Kurt is involved as accompanist for many musical groups and organizations throughout the Coachella Valley including: Harmonic Voices, Melodiam, Modern Men, Unitarian Universalist Church of the Desert, Black Tie Opera, Cathedral High School Chamber Singers, The Arrangement, BloomTones, and Songshine, a non-profit organization that teaches speech therapy through music for people with Parkinson's Disease and stroke, as well as working at College of the Desert as an accompanist among many other things.
Julie Winston Ed Winston
Jay Wagman Diane Wagman
Stuart Markus Ellen Markus
Helen Baker Bill Baker
Carlos King Helen Varon
Steve Bogorad Susan Bogorad
Dennis Licht Trudi Licht
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