A community of communities

Our Rabbis

Rabbi Adam Zeff 


Rabbi ZeffRabbi Adam Zeff has served the Germantown Jewish Centre community since 2002, as Student Rabbi, Assistant Rabbi, and now as Rabbi. He received his rabbinic ordination from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2007.  In addition to his other responsibilities, Rabbi Zeff enjoys bringing music and storytelling into his rabbinic work at GJC, where he also serves as the hazzan and choir director. He has trained as a singer and musician for many years, studying western classical music, South Indian classical music, and diverse Jewish musical traditions. Rabbi Zeff holds a B.A. in Anthropology from Yale University and a Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania. He and his wife, Cheryl, a physician, live in Mt. Airy with their three sons, Zeke, Avi, and Mati. 




Rabbi Annie Lewis 


Annie LewisRabbi Annie Lewis grew up in Plainsboro, New Jersey and at Camp Ramah in the Poconos.  She studied linguistic-anthropology and Judaic studies at Brown University and the University of Cape Town in South Africa.  She lived and worked in Jerusalem, Ashkelon and Be'er Sheva, Israel as a New Israel Fund/Shatil Social Justice Fellow and as a counselor for the Nativ college leadership program.  Rabbi Lewis was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in 2012, where she was a Wexner Graduate Fellow.  During her time at JTS, she received a Masters degree in Jewish Women's and Gender Studies and concentrated in pastoral care and counseling.  She trained in congregation-based community organizing and created a summer social justice program for teenagers in Marin County, California. Rabbi Lewis served as the rabbinic intern at United Synagogue of Hoboken and as the rabbi of Congregation Beth Israel in Gulfport, Mississippi.  She is passionate about arts education and is proud to be a member of the Storahtelling ritual theatre company. She is married to Yosef Goldman, a rabbinical and cantorial student at JTS. She finds joy in creative writing, singing, improvisational comedy and mindfulness meditation. She believes Torah holds sparks for transforming the world.


Visiting Rabbi

Rabbi Reena Spicehandler



Rabbi Reena Spicehandler has been specializing in the interim rabbinates since 2001, serving many congregations in the Reform and Conservative movements. She is a graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College where she subsequently spent ten years as Dean of Students and Admissions. Rabbi Spicehandler has also contributed to many contemporary siddurim and mahzorim as editor, translator, and commentator. Her current project involves translating Agnon stories into English with Dr. Herb Levine, She and her partner, Jeremy Brochin are long time members of Germantown Jewish Centre. Their adult children, Ari and Elana Brochin grew up in this community. Rabbi Spicehandler is joining our clergy in 2014-15 while Rabbi Zeff is on sabbatical and Rabbi Lewis is on maternity leave.

Rabbi Emeritus

Rabbi Leonard Gordon

Rabbi Gordon NewLeonard Gordon served as Rabbi at the Germantown Jewish Centre in Philadelphia from 1994 to 2010. Before taking this pulpit, he held teaching positions in Religion and Humanities at Kenyon College and the Ohio State University. He has also taught at The Jewish Theological Seminary, the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and Brown and Columbia Universities. He graduated Columbia College in 1976, studied at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 1985 and has Masters degrees in Religious Studies from Brown and Columbia Universities. His wife, Dr. Lori Lefkovitz, is the Ruderman Professor of Jewish Studies at Northeastern University. They have two daughters, Ronya, a recent graduate of Brandeis University and Samara, who attends the University of Pennsylvania.