Maharat Hadas (Dasi) Fruchter

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Maharat Hadas (Dasi) Fruchter is the Assistant Spiritual Leader at Beth Sholom Congregation and Talmud Torah of Potomac, MD.  Maharat Dasi thrives on spiritual leadership, vibrant Torah learning and teaching, and community building. Originally from Silver Spring, MD, Maharat Dasi was ordained by Yeshivat Maharat in June of 2016. She graduated summa cum laude from the Macaulay Honors College at Queens College, and completed an M.P.A. in Non-Profit Administration and an M.A. in Jewish Studies from New York University's Wagner School of Public Service. She is a Wexner Graduate Fellow/Davidson Scholar and was the Program Director at ImmerseNYC, New York’s only community mikveh project, in addition to teaching brides and grooms before their weddings. She completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at the Hebrew Home for the Aged in Riverdale and was trained in community organizing through the Jewish Organizing Institute and Network (JOIN) Seminary Leadership Project.

Maharat Dasi believes deeply in helping others--regardless of age, background, and experience--to find resonance in the richness of Jewish ritual life, wisdom and narrative. She is deeply interested in building spiritually robust and empowered Jewish communities. 

Rabba Ramie Smith

Rabba Ramie Smith is Program Director, Assistant Rabba at Hebrew Institute of Riverdale - The Bayit.  A graduate of Yeshiva University with a BA in English communications with emphasis in television writing and public relations and a focus in Women's Studies, Rabba Ramie worked as an intern and freelance production assistant at Comedy Central's The Colbert Report. Rabba Ramie served as the congregational intern at Beth Sholom Congregation and Talmud Torah in Potomac, MD where she gave classes and worked on cultivating a vibrant teen community and as a teacher with Manhattan College's Inside Outside program teaching Criminal Justice Ethics at the Rose M. Singer Center on Rikers Island. Rabba Ramie also moderates the innovative podcast "The Joy of Text", a collaboration between  JOFA and YCT discussing issues of Judaism and Sexuality with Rabbi Dov Linzer, Dr. Batsheva Marcus and experts in various fields. Rabba Ramie combines her training at Yeshivat Maharat with her experience in media, having served as the executive producer at Aleph Beta, a website that produces animated Torah videos. 

Rabbanit Alissa Thomas-Newborn

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Rabbanit Alissa Thomas-Newborn is a spiritual leader at B'nai David-Judea Congregation in Los Angeles, California.  Rabbanit Alissa was ordained by Yeshivat Maharat in 2016. In her final year of studies, she served as the Kehilla Intern at B’nai David-Judea and enjoyed building relationships within the broader Los Angeles community. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Brandeis University with a degree in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies and Classical Studies Archaeology and Ancient History.

Rabbanit Alissa believes in and is informed by the power of our textual tradition to transform our present and ultimately draw us closer to each other and God. She believes in the Divine instruction for us to walk in God’s ways, most especially the imperative to be close to the brokenhearted and all who cry out for support.

Rabbanit Alissa teaches a weekly parsha class as well as courses on a variety of special topics including Bikkur Cholim and Taharat HaMishpacha. In her teaching, she uncovers how our rich, timeless tradition resonates with and deeply enhances our modern daily lives.

Rabbanit Alissa is also a Board Certified Chaplain (BCC) through Neshama: Association of Jewish Chaplains. She has specialities in Palliative Care, End of Life Care, and Psychiatric Care. She has worked as a chaplain at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, New York-Presbyterian Columbia University Medical Center, and Bellevue Hospital. She was also a writer for the Center for Jewish End of Life Care at Metropolitan Jewish Health System.  Rabbanit Alissa has integrated her pastoral passions and skills into much of her work at B’nai David-Judea, leading programs on topics spanning from End of Life Care to Mental Health Awareness to Post Partum Depression.

Rabbanit Alissa was a fellow both at Clal: The National Center for Jewish Learning and Leadership and at the UJA-Federation of New York Wiener Educational Center. She has been a Scholar-in-Residence at various universities and shuls around the country.

Her heart, soul, and body stand with Israel.  A native Los Angelena, Rabbanit Alissa is married to Akiva Newborn.