Rabbi Howard Voss-Altman has served as the Senior Rabbi of Temple Beth-El since 2015. He grew up in Englewood Cliffs, NJ, and graduated from Duke University in 1982 with a B.A. In Political Science and received his law degree from Washington University in St. Louis in 1985 where he was an Associate Editor of the Law Review. As an attorney, he specialized in labor relations and employment discrimination.
Rabbi Voss-Altman was ordained from the Cincinnati Campus of HUC-JIR in 1999 and served as an Assistant Rabbi of North Shore Congregation Israel in Glencoe, Illinois from 1999 until 2002. He then became the rabbi of Temple B’nai Tikvah in Calgary, Alberta, where his rabbinate focused on building a strong spiritual community, pastoral care and counseling, and community and social justice issues. Rabbi Voss-Altman received Alberta’s Centennial Medal of Honour in 2005 and has served as the chair of the Canadian Association of Reform Rabbis, and the Calgary Interfaith Council. He has also served on the board of the Metro Alliance for the Common Good, Imagine Calgary, the Muslim-Jewish Alliance, the Calgary Council of Christians and Jews, and the Rabbinic Cabinet of the Canadian Rabbinic Caucus. Rabbi Voss-Altman and his spouse, Annie, have been married since 1991. Annie is a practicing attorney, focusing on criminal law and Constitutional interpretation. They have three children, Emilie, Judah, and Adi. As a family, they enjoy theater, cinema, travel, music, and, especially, visiting Disney World.
Rabbi Sarah Mack has served Temple Beth-El since 2003 upon her ordination from the New York campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. Rabbi Mack also spent a year studying at the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. A native of Seattle, WA, Sarah graduated from Brandeis University in 1996 with degrees in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies and English.
Rabbi Mack currently serves as the President of the Board of Rabbis of Greater Rhode Island, on the Jewish Alliance Board, the Religious Coalition for a Violence-Free Rhode Island, and the RI Interfaith Coalition to Reduce Poverty. She worked diligently to promote Marriage Equality in RI and continues to promote social justice in Rhode Island with interfaith colleagues from Religious Coalition. Rabbi Mack and her husband Jeffrey Isaacs enjoy raising their two sons in the smallest state in America.
Rabbi Leslie Yale Gutterman, Emeritus has served Temple Beth-El from 1970 to 2015, upon his ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. In 1974 when Rabbi William G. Braude retired, Rabbi Gutterman became the synagogue’s senior rabbi. A 1964 graduate of the University of Michigan, Rabbi Gutterman has been involved with dozens of civic organizations and has served as a board member of many preeminent institutions including: Butler Hospital, The Rhode Island Telecommunications Commission, The Providence Athenaeum, Hospice Care, Rhode Island Kids Count, Trinity Repertory Theatre, Interfaith Health Care Ministries, Brown University’s Board of Religious Overseers, and Bryant University.
Rabbi Gutterman was president of the Rhode Island Board of Rabbis, the Jewish Family Service and the National Rabbinic Alumni Association of Reform Judaism as well as the Rhode Island Committee for the Humanities. He has served on the executive board of the Central Conference of American Rabbis and taught at Providence College. For 20 years, Rabbi Gutterman wrote a monthly column for the religion page of The Providence Journal. He received a public service award from the City of Providence on its 350th anniversary and the lifetime achievement award from the Rhode Island Council of Churches and in 2012 he was inducted into the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame. Rabbi Gutterman was awarded a Doctor of Divinity degree from Hebrew Union College and holds honorary degrees from the University of Rhode Island, Roger Williams University, Johnson & Wales University, Providence College, Rhode Island College and Bryant University. He and his wife Janet are the proud parents of three daughters.
Cantor Judith Seplowin came to Beth-El as our cantor in 2000. She is a 1995 graduate of the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) where she received a Master of Sacred Music, investiture and several awards of distinction. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Spanish Literature from Douglass College/Rutgers University and La Universidad Complutense in Madrid, Spain. Before serving at Temple Beth-El, Cantor Seplowin served The Temple-Congregation Shomer Emunim of Sylvania (Toledo), Ohio for five years and also served congregations in New York City and Doylestown, Pennsylvania. In 1996, HUC-JIR invited Cantor Seplowin to reprise her master’s recital, “Synagogue Art Music of the Eighteenth Century,” for the annual Cantor Walter A. Davidson Concert.
She has appeared in concerts in Israel and in many cities throughout the United States. She has performed musical theater throughout the United States, Europe and in parts of Asia and Russia. As a student at the seminary, Cantor Seplowin performed with the Avodah Dance Ensemble as a singer/dancer. She has served as the cantorial representative of the Northeast Lakes Council Region of the Union of Reform Judaism, taught at the Beloit Kallah, and taught and performed at national and regional biennials of the Reform movement. Cantor Seplowin serves on the Committee on Ethics and Appeals of the American Conference of Cantors (ACC) and the Cantor’s Lifecycle Manual Committee.