I’m excited to join with the Clergy and Staff at Temple Beth David to bring light and learning to its families and students.
I have participated in Friday night services and other TBD events, before…but, for those who don’t know me, I started my working career as an LAUSD teacher, first at the Area D Alternative School, in West Los Angeles, and then at the inner-city Holmes Ave School. In between those two teaching jobs, I worked as Junior Program Director and Day Camp Director at Valley Cities Jewish Community Center in Sherman Oaks.
After teaching for eight years, I had my own T-shirt business, providing merchandise for all kinds of organizations and events like the Jewish Federation and their Israel Walk Festival…and even the Playboy Jazz Festival, for a few years.
At some point in the mid 90’s, the captain of the softball team I played on recruited me to be the Fundraiser for his non-profit organization: Jewish Big Brothers of Los Angeles. We worked together to help build JBB for about six years, and then I moved on to other non-profit fundraising work, finishing up at Sinai Temple for five years.
After that, I started doing consulting work in the Sign and Contracting business (specializing in permitting and project management), and most importantly, started training students for Bar/Bat Mitzvah and officiating at their private ceremonies.
Since March of 2010, I have been leading services and special events at Temple Ami Shalom in West Covina…singing as Cantor.
I look forward to engaging closely with the 5th and 6th graders at TBD, to help teach them to read Hebrew, to help them learn a lot about Israel and about Jewish History and Customs, and to help prepare them for their B’nai Mitzvot…and their Jewish lives ahead.
B’shalom…. Cantor Mike