Alison C. Brown, Executive Director
Alison Brown is a Rabbinic Student completing her thesis. She was recently appointed executive director of the Hebrew Seminary and upon ordination hopes to also serve as a Jewish spiritual guide. Alison brings to the seminary eight years as a magazine editor and ten years as an association executive.
Rabbi Shari Chen, Assistant Professor of Hebrew
Rabbi Chen has served as the Director of the Congregation Bene Shalom Religious School for over 15 years. She was ordained at the Hebrew Seminary in 2005 and since then has served as Bene Shalom’s Assistant Rabbi. She has taught and served as a school board member at Congregation B’nai Emunah and participated in interfaith services at Sedgebrook Communities. Rabbi Chen has lectured at the Bernard Horwich JCC and led workshops at the Chicago Association for Young Children’s Education. She has also lectured and is an Inclusion Training Specialist with National Louis University’s Leadership Training Program. Rabbi Chen teaches B’nai Mitzvah students and adult Hebrew classes at Bene Shalom. She has been on the faculty at Hebrew Seminary since 2013.
Linda Clark, Senior Lecturer in Pastoral Counseling
Ms. Clark was co-coordinator of the Chicago Parachaplaincy Program from 2000-2008. She has been leading prayer services including Shabbat Services , high holiday and healing prayer services since 2000 at various nursing homes and hospitals. She is a member of the Spiritual Care Association. Ms. Clark has spoken at State of Israel Bonds, Chicago Woman’s Division, Haddassah, and local synagogues on the importance of the mitzvah of Bikkur Cholim. In 2003, Linda was the recipient of “The Spiritual Award” from the State of Israel Bonds, Chicago Women’s Division.
Rabbi Menachem Cohen, Assistant Professor of Spirituality
Menachem Cohen received smicha from Hebrew Seminary in 2003. He is the Founder of the Mitziut Jewish Community, and since 2006 has worked at The Night Ministry on the streets of Chicago with LGBTQ and/or homeless youth. He is currently finishing his certificate in Spiritual Direction at Loyola University, where he is doing his internship running personal growth/spiritual direction groups using role playing games such as Dungeons and Dragons, with the youth in The Night Ministry programs. He is also a game designer, and partner at AlleyCat Comics.
Deborah N. Fink, Professor of American Sign Language and Deaf Culture
Rabbi Michael Davis, Professor of Midrash
Cantor Davis received a traditional yeshiva education and is a graduate of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in musicology. He trained as a cantor in Israel, where he also served as a chaplain in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). Cantor Davis received his investiture (cantorial ordination) in the United States, from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion’s School of Sacred Music. Cantor Davis is a member of the American Conference of Cantors (ACC) where he has served on the Certification Committee for ordaining cantors at the School of Sacred Music-Hebrew Union College. Cantor Michael Davis joined Lakeside Congregation as its first cantor in 2003. In 2015 he was ordained as a rabbi at Hebrew Seminary. Rabbi Cantor Michael Davis currently serves as rabbi at Makom Shalom in Chicago. He has served on the faculty of the Hebrew Seminary training future rabbis in classic Hebrew and Aramaic text since 2009.
Rahmiel Hayyim Drizin, Professor of Kabbalah
Reb Rahmiel was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and moved to Chicago to go to Northwestern Law School. Reb Rahmiel is a devoted student of many of the leading teachers of Kabbalah in English in Israel and the USA. He is a criminal defense lawyer who lives in Oak Park with his family. Much of Reb Rahmiel's work is available on line at www.kabbalahonline.org
Rabbi Pinchas Eisenbach, Ph.D., Professor of Jewish Medical Ethics and Pastoral Counseling
Rabbi Pinchas Eisenbach received his BS from Yeshiva University Los Angeles in 1973, where he was valedictorian of his class. In the same year, he received an M.Ed in education from Loyola University, in Los Angeles. In 1997 he received a D.Min. from the Chicago Theological Seminary, in 1999 an MA in Sacred Theology from the same institution. In 2007 he received a doctorate in Hebrew Letters from the Jewish University of America in Skokie, Illinois. Rabbi Eisenbach received smicha from Rabbi Aryeh Leib Kaplan at Anshe Ma’amad Yeshiva in Jerusalem, with the designation of yadin yadin, the highest ordination given. He also received smicha from Rabbi Aaron Soloveitchik, at Yeshivas Brisk, Chicago, Illinois, again with yadin yadin designation. Rabbi Eisenbach is a certified chaplain, was coordinator of the Parachaplaincy Program of the Chicago Board of Rabbis from 1990-1999, and has served on the staff of the Midwest Palliative and Hospice Care Center of Glenview as a chaplain since 1994. His area of expertise is medical ethics.
Rabbi Laurence Edwards, Ph.D., Professor of Bible, Jewish Thought, Jewish History
Rabbi Edwards received his A.B. degree in Humanities from the University of Chicago in 1970, and was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1975. He received a Ph.D. in Bible, Culture and Hermeneutics from Chicago Theological Seminary in 2005, with a dissertation entitled "Resurrecting the Pharisees: Ideology and Identity between Christians and Jews," on constructions of the Pharisees in New Testament, rabbinic literature, and modern scholarship.
Rabbi Edwards has served as a campus and congregational rabbi for 45 years. He teaches at DePaul University, University of Illinois Chicago, Chicago Theological Seminary, as well as Hebrew Seminary. He has served as Book Review Editor of the CCAR Journal / Journal of Reform Judaism, and has published articles and reviews in various collections and journals.
Rabbi Edwards’ recent publications include a translation of Nobel Prize Laureate Shmuel Yosef Agnon’s story, The Great Synagogue, in the collection Forevermore & Other Stories (Toby Press), and “Matthew’s Pharisees: Seven Woes and Seven Warnings”, presented at the 2015 Lutheran World Conference (https://www.lutheranworld.org/sites/default/files/dtpw-studies-201502-to_all_nations-full.pdf).
Rabbi Dr. Douglas Goldhamer, Ph.D., D.D., Professor of Kabbalah/Healing
Following his rabbinic ordination at Hebrew Union College, Rabbi Goldhamer, together with Chicago deaf leaders, established Congregation Bene Shalom/Hebrew Association of the Deaf in 1972. For the past 43 years, he has served as Senior Rabbi, serving the deaf and hearing Jewish communities. In 1992, Rabbi Goldhamer founded Hebrew Seminary, where he currently serves as President and Professor of Jewish Mysticism, as well as other topics of the rabbinic curriculum. He lectures on philosophy, Jewish mysticism and prayer throughout the United States.
Rabbi Goldhamer was Scholar in Residence and Professor of Philosophy at Gallaudet University, Washington, D.C., the only university for the deaf in the world. In 1998, Rabbi Goldhamer received his Doctor of Divinity degree from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati. He also holds a PhD in Medieval Philosophy from the University of Chicago.
Rabbi Goldhamer’s new book, Healing With God’s Love: Kabbalah’s Hidden Secrets, contains ancient Kabbalistic practices whose translations were not heretofore available to the public. Rabbi Goldhamer is also the author of This is For Everyone: Universal Principles of Healing Prayer and the Jewish Mystics.
Reflecting his ability to communicate in myriad ways, the Rabbi began painting about 15 years ago. He focuses on Jewish mystical and Biblical themes. His magnificent artwork has been shown in galleries nationally.
Dr. Stephanie L. Kutzen, Ph.D., LCSW, Professor of Psychology
Dr. Kutzen is a cum laude graduate of the University of Chicago School of Social Service Administration with a concentration in Human Service Management. She received her Ph.D. in Social Work at the Jane Addam School of Social Work, University of Illinios at Chicago. Her dissertation focused explicitly on establishing models for evaluation of corporate responsilibity.
Dr. Kutzen is a licensed, certified social worker in Illinois, a member of the Academy of Certified Social Workers, the Employee Assistance Professional Association, and the National Association of Social Workers, where she serves on the Occupational Social Work Committee. During her over 40 years of professional experience as a counselor, trainer and consultant, Dr. Kutzen has been on the faculty at Loyola University-Chicago, and is currently on the faculty of the Jane Addams College of Social Work, at the University of Illinois at Chicago.
Father Joe Mulcrone, Professor of Christian Scriptures
Reverend Joseph A. Mulcrone was born November 24, 1945. He grew up on the west side of Chicago, the oldest of eight children. His father and paternal grandfather were Chicago police officers. His maternal grandparents, Laurence and Josephine Fay, were deaf. Mary Mulcrone, their daughter, became a professional sign-language interpreter and teacher of ASL (American Sign-Language). Father Joe attended the seminaries of the Archdiocese of Chicago and was ordained a Catholic priest on May 12, 1971.
His first assignment as to St. Nicholas parish in Evanston, 1971-1976. He then taught at the high-school seminary for one year. In 1977, Father Joe was appointed the Director of the Catholic Office of the Deaf, the Archdiocese of Chicago. He held this position for forty years. During that time, he held many organizational positions in the Catholic Deaf Community in the United States. He has served on numerous boards of directors for not for profit agencies. He also was on many commissions for government agencies, especially the State of Illinois and the City of Chicago. He retired directing the Catholic Office of the Deaf June 30, 2017. He continues to remain active in several organizations, specifically serving deaf people and their families both in the United States and in Mexico/Central America.
Rabbi Marcey Rosenbaum, Assistant Professor of Practical Rabbinics
Rabbi Marcey Rosenbaum is an alumni of Hebrew Seminary. Upon being ordained in 2013, Rabbi Rosenbaum joined Congregation Shalom clergy in Milwaukee as Rabbi Educator and Director of Life Long Learning. Prior to moving to Milwaukee, Rabbi Marcey was a Registered Nurse in the Chicagoland area for many years. In 2018, Rabbi Rosenbaum moved back to the Chicagoland area and is currently Education Director at Shir Hadash Reconstructionist Synagogue in Wheeling.
Rabbi Daniel Vaisrub, Professor of Talmud
Rabbi Vaisrub holds a BA from the University of Michigan, MA from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and MBA from McGill University. He was ordained by Chief Rabbi Israel Meir Lau in 2012. Daniel is a technology strategy consultant and assists in managing the firm.