Humans of Beth Am

God made man because he loves stories. – Elie Wiesel
Humans of Beth Am is intended to bring to light the tapestry of unique stories that exist within our community, and illustrate how people’s genuine, and sometimes vulnerable stories, can be such a powerful tool for creating connection. Please use these stories to reach out, spark dialogue, and build community.

Inez Tiger

Please click HERE to access.At the age of 26, Inez Tiger had been a 3rd grade teacher and administrator at a school in Koreatown, and found herself at a crossroads with her career path. The 1992 Los Angeles riots were happening and there was a major outbreak of violence, looting, and arson due to racial tensions between the LAPD and the city's African Americans. The racial tensions in LA triggered a lot of fears she experienced while growing up in South Africa...READ MORE

Naomi Cohen

Naomi Cohen is originally from Cambridge, Massachusetts; the city where you will find 163 colleges within a 100-mile radius. She was born in Cambridge and spent a couple years in Miami, and then moved on over to the Golden State at the age of 10. She lived in Orange county from 10-18 yrs. old, and then headed to San Diego for both college and law school.......READ MORE

Jane Willoughby

Jane Willoughby is a real mover and shaker in the Temple Beth Am community. She is currently the Director of Programming for the Sisterhood and Educational Programming for the Library Minyan. When she and her husband, Ingram, joined Beth Am in August of 2018, Jane wanted to be very intentional in finding ways to get involved and meet people......READ MORE

Jerry Krautman

Jerry Krautman has been a member of Temple Beth Am since 1995. His wife, Jackie Weiss, who is originally from England, became a member after they got married in 2011. They met online while she was living in England, and they dated over skype. You will always find them in the front row of Library Minyan services.....READ MORE

Arielle Elkoby

If you're looking for Arielle Elkoby, know that she's on the first floor of Pressman Academy in the office right behind the fish tank. Behind her desk, you'll find the office of ECC Director, Angie Bass. Although she's the Assistant to the ECC Director, she is basically the assistant to the whole 1st floor....READ MORE

Susan Nemetz

Temple Beth Am has been Susan's home away from home for the past 27 years. She was born and raised in Toronto Canada, which she describes as a safer and smaller New York City but with gentler and kinder people...READ MORE

Ronna Sundy

Ronna Sundy is everywhere at Temple Beth Am. She's been the event coordinator and chief bottle washer for 22 years, often meeting with temple members planning their major simchas and other lifecycle events.

Ronna grew up in a tight knit Jewish community in Chester, Pennsylvania. She went to Akiba Academy,....READ MORE

Rolando Germon

Rolando is one of our friendly gatekeepers of the upper lot of La Cienega Blvd., standing with a clicker in one hand and a walkie talkie in the other. You'll often find him running around navigating cars like a big jigsaw puzzle....READ MORE

Edy Reyes

Edy Reyes has been an important member of the community as one of our security guards since 2017. He is one of the first friendly faces you see when you enter our building. Before working at Temple Beth Am, he worked at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences for 9 years as security and other various roles. He found it to be an interesting job and met all sorts of celebrities and even got to walk the red carpet...READ MORE

Larry and Diane Herman: Is this our final stop? Who knows?

The Jewish community in Mozambique was growing during this time with Diane and me serving as the lay leadership. We reestablished the formal community as Honen Dalim -- Comunidade Judaica de Moçambique, restored the historic synagogue dating from 1926, celebrated a number of bar and bat mitzvas, a wedding, births, conversions, and welcomed the return of the community's Sefer Torah. ...READ MORE

David Kaplan: Making a Minyan

I believe in prayer and I think it's important for people to have a place to pray. That's why I serve as gabbai for the daily morning service at Temple Beth Am, as well as for the afternoon/evening service... READ MORE

Henny Moed Roth- Just a Jewish Girl

"The most important factor in our lives is our family. Cherish them, good and bad, for better or for worse. In the final analysis, family is all that matters." -Henny

David and Neftali Galdamez

My grandfather, Neftali Galdamez, is my role model because he's everything to me. He's my grandpa, my dad, my best friend and my therapist...READ MORE

Aaron Asher

It is a Judaism that has maintained traditions of soft matzah, eastern melodies for Torah readings, unique Ketubot, and encouraged dialogue with their religious neighbors and easy conversions to Judaism. Slowly but surely I found my heritage in Judaism again, one that finally felt familiar yet ancient, and so much bigger than me...READ MORE

Ida- Seeking Her Special Friend

I am an upbeat and romantic 63 year old European woman, born in Budapest, Hungary, and am filled with vitality and curiosity. Yet I always strive to be a caring and compassionate friend. I consider myself to be an intelligent, well-read, attractive, and a kind, sensitive individual...READ MORE

Rabbi Adam Kligfeld

Who am I? I am, in no particular order, a person who thrills to speak publicly, and who is nervous every time. A rabbi who models religious belief and practice who yet toils in achieving internal peace in both—and thus thinks that teaching that very grappling is one of the best things I can teach about Judaism...READ MORE

Essia Cartoon-Fredman

The closest I've ever felt to a South African shul here in Los Angeles is the Library Minyan at Temple Beth Am, to which both my husband and I belong and regularly attend. My real Jewish identity came when I came to America and started to teach in Jewish day schools....READ MORE

Sivan Hetsroni

For the first time in my life I really started to understand the powerful connection of the Jewish people. Anywhere we are in the world, we find ways to come together. And it's true what they say about traveling, it helps you find yourself. But it also helps you find your people...READ MORE

Jonah Bard's Origami Tzedakah Project

I decided to gather a thousand origami cranes for a friend of mine, a really sick friend living in Denver who is about my age. One thousand cranes is a Japanese symbol for healing and good luck, and I thought that would be good for my friend. I got origami paper...READ MORE

Orlando's Journey

I came to America in 1997 from Santa Ana, the second largest city in El Salvador. My father used to have his own business providing supplies to factories for the shoe business... the glue...the leather. They were doing very good, but because of the war we lost everything ...the farm, houses, cars, and the business itself. I was looking to move to America for a better future,...READ MORE