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Meet our Staff

Terrie Goren, Executive Director 
Terrie relocated from Madison WI where she completed her position as executive director of Temple Beth El (2016-2019). She also served as the executive director of the Madison Public Library Foundation (2007-2010), and Jewish Social Services of Madison (2010-2015). Prior to moving to Madison, Terrie lived in Allentown, PA where her past Jewish communal work included serving as the Lehigh University Hillel Director (2001 - 2006), president of Temple Beth El, Allentown PA (2002 – 2006), and other volunteer roles.

She has over twenty years of non-profit management experience in the Jewish community ranging from serving as a youth director, the director of a Hillel Society, Jewish Social Services, executive director of Temple Beth El and now Temple Sinai. She has a breadth of experiences to draw upon. Her strengths include fundraising, grant writing, strong fiscal management, establishing policies and protocols, organizational and leadership development and team building. Additionally, she has over thirty years of leadership and volunteer experience in community organizations.

Terrie is a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE). She earned a BA in Labor Relations from Douglass College - Rutgers University, a teaching certification in early childhood and elementary education, and has done graduate work in counseling and human services.

Ellen Lefkowitz, RJE, Director of Early Childhood Education
Ellen holds a Joint Masters degree in Jewish Education and Jewish Communal Service from Hebrew Union College. Since receiving her Masters degree, family and early childhood education have been the focus of her work. From 2003-2008, Ellen was the educator at Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills, CA. There she ran a weekly family education program, Hebrew school and helped to establish Gan Ami, the synagogue preschool. For the last two years, Ellen served as the Assistant Director at the Peninsula Jewish Community Center preschool. Her passion for Jewish early childhood education is based on the belief that the core mission of this work is to help children grow and to inspire families to embark on Jewish journeys.

Ellen is originally from Southern California. When not at work, she spends as much time outside as possible whether it is walking, bike riding, running or hiking. Her family and friends are her greatest blessings. She is so excited to be joining the staff of Temple Sinai Preschool!

Molly Peritore, Associate Early Childhood Director
Molly holds a B.A. in ECE from the Evergreen State College and is currently in American Jewish University’s Master’s in Early Childhood Education program. She has been in the field of ECE since 2004 where she spent 13 years as a teacher before stepping into her current role as Associate Director of Early Childhood Education at Temple Sinai in Oakland. She finds inspiration in using Jewish values to guide her work with children, staff and families. Outside of school, Molly enjoys spending time exploring the outdoors with her twin daughters and husband.

George Anton Emblom: Organist/Accompanist/Choir Director
George Anton Emblom began serving as Organist-Choir Director of Temple Sinai in 1995.  He supports Cantor Keys in her musical vision and provides keyboard accompaniment for various services. He also leads the Temple Sinai Volunteer Choir and the professional High Holy Day Choir,  and he is a member of the Guild of Temple Musicians which is the Reform organization for synagogue soloists and musicians.

George also serves as Director of Music at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, Director of Chapel Music and Lecturer in Church Music at the Church Divinity School of the Pacific (Episcopal), and instructor of organ at UC-Berkeley. He is an member of the Association of Anglican Musicians, having served as a director-at-large, a member of professional concerns committee, and most recently, treasurer. The Temple Sinai Choir regularly joins together with the choir of St. Mark’s in many joint interfaith services. As a testament to George’s passion for interfaith exchange, he recently offered a workshop to the Hymn Society of America entitled “Repairing the World through Shared Song.” An active member of the American Guild of Organists, George served as dean of the Greater Kansas City Chapter, the San Francisco Chapter (1997-1999 and 2000-2012) and he served as chair of worship for the Region IX AGO Convention.

George's solo recital performances have included recitals at St. Mark’s, Berkeley, St. Thomas Fifth Avenue, Westminster Abbey, and Grace Cathedral. He has also accompanied services in Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford; Ely, St. Mary’s, Edinburgh; Southwell Minster, and Westminster Abbey. As a singer, he has sung services in the cathedrals of Durham, Chichester, Norwich, Coventry, Winchester, and Bristol. As a conductor, he has conducted services in St. George’s, Windsor, Chichester, Clare College – Cambridge, Bury-St. Edmunds, Gloucester, Salisbury, Truro, Norwich, and Wells.

George graduated with distinction from St. Olaf College and the Conservatory of Music of the University of Missouri at Kansas City.

Isaac Zones: Song Leader
Isaac Zones is an Oakland based musician specializing in Jewish, spiritual, folk and family music. Isaac teaches music classes, leads prayer services, officiates lifecycle events, does concerts and performs for weddings and other celebrations. Isaac learned to play guitar at Camp Tawonga and has worked on staff almost every summer since 2001. Isaac made a CD with his friend Melita called “My Roots Go Down” which has been distributed to 10s of thousands of families around the country by PJ Library multiple times. The CD also won a Parents’ Choice award across all genres of music. Isaac plays bigger shows with the uplifting Jewgrass party band SHAMATi.

Isaac was born and raised in San Francisco where he attended Brandeis Hillel Day School and later graduated from Lowell High School. Isaac was bar-mitzvah’d at conservative Congregation Beth Sholom where he trained with Adi Weiss and Rabbi Alan Lew.  Isaac attended Pomona College where he majored in Religious Studies and Mathematics.

Before prioritizing music as a profession Isaac led many Jewish young adult programs including being the founding director of Moishe House. Isaac enjoys playing sports, exploring music and Jewish identity, working for a more just society with fuller lives for all of us and spending time with family, friends and his loving life partner Vivian.



Sat, July 2 2022 3 Tammuz 5782