Professional Staff

Email Rabbi Dorsch at
[email protected]

Rabbi Daniel Dorsch

Rabbi Daniel Dorsch is excited to be the rabbi of Etz Chaim after serving for six years as an associate rabbi in Livingston, NJ.  After earning his B.A. degrees from Columbia University and the Albert A. List College at the Jewish Theological Seminary, he received his rabbinical ordination and M.A. in Synagogue School Education from JTS.  At graduation, he was awarded the Reverend Zvi Hirsch Masliansky Prize for Homiletics.

In addition to serving as a Vice President of MERCAZ-USA, the Zionist arm of the Conservative Movement, he also contributes a regular column online as a part of’s Rabbi’s Round Table. He enjoys teaching and spending time with congregants at every age and stage of life. He can’t wait to meet you for coffee and tell you about the new and exciting things taking place at Etz Chaim. 

Rabbi Dorsch joins the Etz Chaim family with his wife, Amy, and son, Zev.


Email Rabbi Lewis at
[email protected]

Read Rabbi Lewis' Blog 

Rabbi Shalom J. Lewis 


Rabbi Shalom J. Lewis demonstrates his commitment to the idea of the Rabbi as a teacher and friend.  He believes that inspiration comes through personal enthusiasm and involvement.  From the gentle way he encourages each member to learn and to grow, he has touched many.  Rabbi Lewis' religious services are a stimulating, uplifting blend of the past and the present.  Whether on the bima or in his office, he generates a caring warmth.

A graduate of Temple University, Rabbi Lewis was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America.  He also holds graduate degrees in education and Judaica.  His warmth and enthusiasm are contagious! 

Bob Bachrach
Email Bob Bachrach at
[email protected]


Robert L. Bachrach - Executive Director & COO

Bob Bachrach, our Executive Director & COO, provides the day-to-day management of the fiscal, physical, and administrative affairs of the synagogue.  Ensuring the smooth and efficient operation of the shul, Bob is committed to fostering an environment that provides Meaningful Jewish Experiences which include religious, educational, social and cultural encounters for all members of the Congregation.

A graduate of Hofstra University with a B.B.A, Bob enjoyed two successful professional careers prior to assuming his current responsibilities in 2008.  For 25 years, he held various executive positions in the retail industry, concluding with his management of a multi-billion dollar division of a national retailer.  Bob then spent 12 years as a human resources consultant, specializing in executive search.

The Bachrach family have been members of Congregation Etz Chaim since 1987, and Bob was on the Board of Trustees from 1998 until 2008.  During this time, he held various positions, culminating in his role as the synagogue president from 2006 to 2008.  Bob was a passionate lay leader and now has transitioned this enthusiasm into his current role as a synagogue professional. 
Debbie Deutsch
Email Debbie Deutsch at
[email protected] 

Debbie Deutsch - Director of Education   

Debbie Deutsch received her B.S. in Special Education from Florida State University and her M.Ed. in Education Administration and Supervision from George Mason University.  After enjoying a fourteen-year career as an educator, Debbie became our Preschool Director in 1995, and Religious Education Director in 2011.  Here at Etz Chaim, she has created a warm and caring environment in which children progress at their own page in a hands-on developmental program.

Debbie hails from Bowie, Maryland and has the unique distinction of being one of our three-generational families at Etz Chaim.  She is the ideal person to initiate our children into Judaism and its wonders!


Email Heather Blake at [email protected]

Heather Blake - Program Director

Heather grew up in Charlotte, NC and was involved in the Union for Reform Judaism youth movement and camping system. At Florida State University, she studied elementary education and was actively involved in Hillel. Inspired to work in the Jewish community upon graduation, Heather spent five years as the Program Director at Temple Israel in Tallahassee, Florida, where she created and developed innovative programs for all ages and frequently led services as a Cantorial Soloist.  

Heather received dual master's degrees in Jewish Professional Leadership and Near Eastern and Judaic Studies from Brandeis University in May 2015. After graduate school, she worked as the Director of Jewish Innovation and Engagement at the Memphis Jewish Community Center.  



Email Matt Altman at [email protected]

Matt Altman - Youth Director 

Matt is a third generation Atlantan who was involved in various Jewish organizations growing up such as NFTY, BBYO, and JSU. At Georgia State University, Matt studied Public Policy while serving in various positions throughout Hillel, Alpha Episilon Pi, and Chabad. Matt understands that a strong Jewish identity is formed during our most formative years.  He looks forward to creating a safe and comfortable space for your children to grow as Jewish people.

Matt will start his Master’s degree in American Foreign Policy towards the Israeli-Arab conflict fall of 2016 at Georgia State University.  He hopes to create more programming in the areas of Israel and Social Action throughout the Youth Department.



Email Aram Blankenship at
[email protected]  

Aram Blankenship, Facilities Manager

Email Ellen Feldser at 
Ellen Feldser, Bookkeeper 
Email Betsy Fitzwater at
[email protected]
Betsy Fitzwater, Office Manager
Email Bernice Isaac at
[email protected] 
Bernice Isaac, Administrator 
Email Jen Katz at
[email protected]
Jen Katz, Administrator (Education)
Email Lia Picard at
[email protected] 
Lia Picard, Digital Communications Coordinator


Etz Chaim is...

Congregation Etz Chaim is a progressive, egalitarian Conservative synagogue that provides meaningful Jewish experiences in a welcoming, engaging environment.  We offer:


Inspiring religious services
Educational, social, and cultural activities, serving multi-generational needs
A caring community that supports each other through both joyful and challenging life cycle events
Connections with the broader community and opportunities for Tikkun Olam...

Our intention, in all activities, is to provide an environment of warmth and an opportunity for personal growth. We celebrate together, we pray together, and we learn together, making Etz Chaim truly a home away from home. 


VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! Come and get involved with your community!

We need 1) A Shabbat Greeter; 2) Social Action volunteers! Contact Joe Freeman



Looking for a Conservative Synagogue?
Please join us for Shabbat Services!
New and prospective members are always welcome!

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