The Latest from BZBI

Welcome Rebecca Slavin-Phillips

April 22, 2020

Nikki Morris, Chair of the Board of Trustees, released the following letter to the Congregation on April 17th, just before Dr. Slavin-Phillips started her position as the new Executive Director for BZBI.  Her bio can be viewed here.


It is my pleasure to announce that Dr. Rebecca Slavin-Phillips has accepted our offer to become the next BZBI Executive Director. I am thrilled to have Rebecca join our community because of her character, energy, strong emphasis on a relational approach to congregational life, professional commitment to synagogue work and her anthropologic/ethnographic perspective on how our congregation fits in to the larger community.

Thank you to our Executive Director Search Committee chaired by Suzanne Litke, and including Gail Kroop, Amy Shulz, Josh Levy, Susan Zeelander and Rabbi Friedman. This team has spent the last six months defining and refining the responsibilities, roles and characteristics of an administrator and thought-leader for BZBI, and we believe Rebecca is the best candidate to help lead our community.

Rebecca notes that “I am thrilled to be joining the congregational family as your new Executive Director. I am looking forward to working with your exceptional Rabbis, staff, and Board and meeting all members of the congregation. I especially want to thank the Hiring Committee for all of their hard work over these past months. I know we have a lot of work ahead of us, especially navigating through these unprecedented times. As a congregation, we will learn to meet and conquer these challenges. Together we will immediately put plans in motion to help usher in a thriving future today, tomorrow, and for many years to come.”

Rebecca will begin working with us on April 20th. Our Interim ED Harvey Friedrich will remain on staff to help Rebecca transition into her new role and to provide support and consistency to our organization, especially during this difficult period. Harvey’s leadership over the past 10 months has been invaluable, and we are grateful and lucky that he joined us, even after his retirement from this line of work.

We will schedule a number of Zoom “meetings over coffee” to give you a chance to get to know Rebecca. Dates will be announced in the e-Cong as soon as they are set. We will have a sign-up list to ensure that groups remain small, so that all questions can be asked and answered.

On behalf of the Board of Trustees, thank you for working with us as we interviewed candidates, and we hope you will join us in welcoming Dr. Slavin-Phillips to our Kehillah.

Nikki Morris
President of the Board