Rabbi Jay Perlman
Rabbi Jay Perlman is a Senior Rabbi at Temple Beth Shalom. Since his arrival in Needham in the summer of 2003, Rabbi Perlman has been dedicated to nurturing a warm, vibrant, spiritually meaningful community. He is proud to share in this sacred service with many outstanding clergy, professional, and lay leaders.
Rabbi Perlman is active in both the Needham and the Greater Boston Jewish community. He is an active member of the Needham Clergy Association, including having recently served as president. He currently serves on the New England Regional Board of the Anti-Defamation League. He frequently dedicates two weeks during summer to serve on the faculty at the Union for Reform Judaism’s Camp Eisner. Rabbi Perlman has served as a rabbinic mentor for both the Hebrew College Rabbinic Program and the rabbinical school at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He is a regular teacher for the URJ’s “Taste of Judaism” and “Introduction to Judaism” programs and is a member of the Needham Coalition for Suicide Prevention.
Before coming to the Boston area, Rabbi Perlman served at Congregation Shaare Emeth in St. Louis, MO. While there, he was awarded UJA Federation’s Rabbinic Award for outstanding community leadership. Rabbi Perlman was active in the development of innovative worship experiences, creative youth programming, and in working with the St. Louis Jewish deaf community. In addition, Rabbi Perlman was the founding Rabbinic Director of the Fleischer Jewish Healing Center of St. Louis.
Rabbi Perlman was ordained from the Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion in New York in 1996. While at HUC, he was the recipient of a number of academic awards, including his selection as a Steinhardt Scholar for his work in informal education.
Rabbi Perlman is originally from the Boston area. He is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of Brandeis University, where he received his B.A. in both History and Near East and Judaic Studies. Rabbi Perlman has participated in numerous study opportunities in Israel, including programs at the Hartman Institute, the Conservative Yeshiva, the Pardes Institute, Hebrew University, and through the World Zionist Organization.
Rabbi Perlman has a passion for teaching, learning, building bridges, and sharing the beauty of our Jewish tradition. He joyfully shares his life with his wife, Emily, and their children Liana and Jonah.
Temple Beth Shalom's Elementary Learning Program
Cantor DJ Fortine
T'filah Leader on Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday
Daniel ("D.J.") Fortine is our first ever TBS Cantorial Intern. A graduate of the University of Hartford's prestigious Hartt School of Music where he received his BA in Music and Judaic Studies, D.J. is a gifted musician, leader of song, and aspiring Cantor. As Cantorial Intern, D.J. brings the spirit and beauty of Jewish music to us. While attending the Hartt School, D.J.'s primary focus was on music theory, performance, and music education. His musical range is broad, as he has successfully shared song in settings as diverse as the congregational bima, the opera stage, the choir concert hall, a cappella group performances, and Jewish summer camp.
D.J. is skilled as both a guitar player and at the piano. He has served as the Head Song Leader at the Union for Reform Judaism's Eisner Camp in Great Barrington, MA. He has led congregational music at Temple Beth Hillel in South Windsor, CT and Congregation Beth Israel of West Hartford. He has served as Cantorial Soloist on the bima for Shabbat and holidays, led music for children and teens, and worked closely with Bar/Bat Mitzvah students.
D.J. will be joining Rabbi Perlman and Rabbi Markley in creating moving and spirited Shabbat services throughout the year. In addition, DJ creates new pathways for adult singing and opportunities to build upon the already strong musical culture at TBS. So too he creates relationships with our B'nei Mitzvah and their families as well as serving as a key member of our Mayim/Etzim Learning Team as he brings music to our community's children and teens.
T'filah Leader on
I am a recent graduate of Bard College, where I received my Bachelor of Arts in Dance with a minor in Theology. Prior to joining TBS, I have spent my time as a madricha for Kindergarten through third graders, as well as working at a URJ summer camp as both a counselor and a unit head. I have also been a dance teacher, where I brought into the classroom ways in which Jewish values can be applied to the creative movement process. With both my educational and artistic backgrounds, I strive to bring to TBS a classroom environment where creativity and curiosity are encouraged, and to instill a love of learning about Jewish ideas.