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Donning Many Caps

Linda Price | 19/10/2021
Israel and Zionism
Jewish Education

I’m thrilled that Schechter has given me the opportunity and the platform to work with so many diverse communities… where you can renew others and be renewed yourself.

Doron Rubin, Schechter educator par excellence, teaches a Midreshet Schechter community Bet Midrash in Ofakim, advises two MA Leadership programs, and most recently, has joined the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary for full-time studies

When asked his age, Doron Rubin quips: “25 years plus 26 years experience” – summing up a lifetime of community activism, commitment to Conservative Judaism and a love of learning. Doron grew up in Haifa in a secular Zionist home, but from the time of his Bar Mitzvah at Kehillat Moriah, he knew where he was going. A NOAM youth group leader, he joined the army with other NOAM recruits; married an SRS-ordained rabbi, Judit; and then traveled to England as a NOAM emissary. Since then, he has excelled at non-profit management, working for years with Hillel and the Jewish Agency on Israel-Diaspora projects. Recently, he founded a business – Tzmicha – with a twist: to “grow” Jewish education for older students.

Wryly, Doron asserts that “education is wasted on the young.” Not that he discounts the importance of reaching younger populations, but “many important decisions are happening later in our lives, especially in the 21st century when professions and parenting are postponed well into the 30s.” The Jewish world in which he works “is very complicated, where a huge gap exists between ideology and reality, between values practiced and preached. You have to be mature to incorporate all these contradictions into a world view,” he explains.

Desiring to augment his Jewish knowledge, Doron enrolled in SRS’s rabbinic program. As an intern this year at Ashkelon’s Kehillat Netzach Yisrael, Rubin, together with Rabbi Gustavo Surazski, created a very successful program called “Grandma’s Tales” in response to the pandemic. Each week, grandmothers with children at the five TALI preschools in Ashkelon read stories to them via Zoom, creating special bonds and a sense of self worth on both sides.

Doron wears many caps at Schechter. He coordinates the Maccabee MA program for Community Leadership and helped establish an MA program for residents of Ofakim and the Negev, where he worked closely with the Jewish Federation of MetroWest, NJ. In addition, he runs a Schechter Bet Midrash in the town that meets twice a month with 25-30 residents participating. “It’s a great group which continued to be active throughout Corona,” he says.

“Give a job to a busy man,” goes the adage and Doron Rubin fits the bill. In addition to his Schechter work and study, he has five children aged 24 to 9, and he volunteers on boards of a number of non-profits, including the TALI Education Fund. “I’m thrilled that Schechter has given me the opportunity and the platform to work with so many diverse communities – always being challenged by new situations where you can renew others and be renewed yourself.”

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