Our Faculty

Our Beit Din is composed of three Rabbis who have been receiving and evaluating the course work of a candidate enrolled in the Modern Rabbi program. After a comprehensive three day intensive in New York City, consisting of oral testing by the three Rabbis of the Beit Din, a candidate passing all requirements will be ordained and granted Smicha, a Diploma of Ordination.

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Rabbi Roger Ross

Rabbi Roger Ross received his Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology and Philosophy from New York University and received his Certificate in Spiritual Counseling from the first interfaith seminary in New York. He went on to become the Executive Director of that seminary for 9 years. Rabbi Ross is now the Chairman of the Board and CFO of the New Vision Interspiritual Seminary (NVIS) as well as the Interfaith Community International.

Rabbi Ross was graduated from and received Smicha (Rabbinical Ordination) from the Rabbinical Seminary International (RSI) in 1995, of which he is now the Executive Director. He is also the Executive Director of the Rabbinical Fellowship of America International and a Board member of the International Federation of Rabbis (IFR).

At the United Nations Rabbi Ross is a co-Chair of the Executive Council of the Committee on Spiritual Values and Global Concerns at the United Nations NY (www.csvgc-ny.org), UN representative for the United Religions Initiatives (URI) and a bureau member of the Committee of Religious NGOs at the UN-NY (CRNGO).

Rabbi Ross has a private practice in Marital and Spiritual Counseling for couples and singles. He performs life-cycle ceremonies worldwide.

Rabbi Mary Newman

Rabbi Mary Newman, MA is the Jewish and Palliative Care Chaplain at Greenwich Hospital/Yale University Medical Center and is working both in the larger hospital and as chaplain in the hospital's Palliative Care Department. She has worked and trained in this area throughout her four years of CPE training and obtained board certification in the NAJC and APC. She is the Academic Dean of the Rabbinical Seminary (RSI) in NYC and the former Director of Music at Temple Shaaray Tefila in Bedford Corners, NY, an 800 family Reform congregation. Rabbi Newman regularly leads groups for Jewish Family Services of Greenwich and is completing work on two audio books on Spirituality in Healing from the perspective of Jewish wisdom. Rabbi Newman did her undergraduate work at Dartmouth College and SUNY. She received her pararabbinic/shliach tzibur degree from the URJ doing her academic work at HUC, Cincinnati. She did additional graduate studies at the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem and RSI. Rabbi Newman completed post-graduate certification in Jewish Healing and Kabbalah with Rabbi Joseph Gelberman.

Rabbi Jill Hausman

Rabbi Jill Hausman has been the Rabbi and Cantor of the historic Actors' Temple (Congregation Ezrath Israel) since 2006. She served for twelve years at Boro Park Progressive Synagogue, a Reform Congregation, as Cantor and for the last two years of that period, also as their Assistant Rabbi. She has a background in Environmental Biology, singing and acting, having produced two recordings of German Lieder in her own English translations. She has also composed music for synagogue services and has written poetry published on Ritualwell.org. Her commentaries on the weekly Torah portion have been published by The Jewish Week-Times of Israel-Jewish Telegraphic Service, T'ruah.org, and Tikkun Magazine.

Rabbi Jill, a New Jersey native, is a graduate of Smith College and received her Semicha from the Rabbinical Seminary International under the guidance of Rabbi Joseph Gelberman in 2004. Other mentors include Rabbi Charles Shoulson and the composer and organist Hermann Berlinski.

Rabbi William Kurry z'l

Rabbi Kurry, of blessed memory, was a former college English professor who enjoyed years of leadership positions and deep roots in the Jewish community. Rabbi Bill completed the 7½ year cycle of Daf Yomi Talmud study. He was a member and guest leader at his local Orthodox, Conservative and Reform congregations. Rabbi Kurry was committed to the concept of a life of personal spiritual development and service to God and humanity. He believed we are all God’s children. His enthusiasm and joy of Judaism was coupled with profound respect of all faiths and traditions.

Rabbi Kurry received Rabbinic ordination from Rabbi Joseph H. Gelberman and The Rabbinical Seminary in New York City. .