Dear Members of CBI:
Ever since Rabbi Roseman indicated that he will retire at the end of May 2014, we have been actively engaged in a search for his successor. President Jim Gold wisely appointed Andy Lehrman to chair the committee and proceeded to appoint a committee representing a cross section of the congregation. We created a profile of the congregation based on numerous Town Hall meetings. This application was submitted to the Rabbinic Placement Commission along with a video made by Andy Taubman. In the late summer of 2013, a number of applications were received, and the committee members read and researched each dossier carefully. Eventually, Skype interviews were held with several candidates. The members of the committee unanimously agreed that one rabbi stood out from all the others, so Rabbi Ilan Emanuel, his wife Randi and daughter Mira were invited to visit our community last month. I was so pleased with the hospitality and attendance that greeted our visiting guests at various activities, which involved services, Torah Study, meals and group visits. These many opportunities allowed Rabbi Emanuel to get to know us and vice versa. This exploration weekend definitely took a village to accomplish, but I wanted to give a special thanks to Andy Lehrman who headed up the entire search process, spent many hours with me organizing the weekend and then drawing up the contract which Rabbi Emanuel recently signed. Many thanks also to the search committee consisting of David Engel, Brian Honigbaum Jana Zager, Barbara Schwamb, Gary Blum, Gregg Silverman, Jim Gold and Maury Wolfson. Several other congregants were also instrumental in the weekend: Julia Noble who entertained daughter Mira , along with Sarah and Olivia, then stepped up to entertain the Emanuels on their unintended extended stay on Monday, Maury Wolfson who also helped entertain the Emanuel's at the last minute, when their plane was canceled on Sunday night. Chip and Barbara Schwamb who provided a Shabbat meal for the Emanuels, Laura Hausman who entertained Randi and Mira Emmanuel in Port Aransas, and Iris Lehrman who organized a lunch on Friday. Many other congregants provided rides, attended meetings, services and arranged other opportunities for the family. All these events demonstrated to the Emanuels that this would be the perfect place for them to begin the next chapter in their life and in Rabbi Emanuel's career.
The Committee recommended to the Board of the congregation that we offer the position to Rabbi Emanuel. The offer was made prior to the Emanuels leaving town, and after giving the offer serious thought, Ilan Emanuel informed us that he would be delighted to take the position and will move to Corpus Christi in July 2014.
Rabbi Emanuel and Rabbi Roseman are already working together to assure a smooth transition. Rabbi Roseman has agreed to extend his service to CBI for about five weeks to cover the needs of the synagogue members until the Emanuels arrive. Over the next several months, you will learn more about the Emanuels and will also learn how we will honor Rabbi and Phyllis Roseman on his retirement and show our appreciation to both of them for all they have done for Congregation Beth Israel.
Suzy Hilliard, President