Your Board of Trustees

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Eric Schiffer VP, Operations

Eric Schiffer
President

I grew up at TBD with my mom Jane (still a member) and my grandmother Rose, and later re-joined after having my own family.  I had my Bar Mitzvah with Rabbi Front and Cantor Newman here some 30 odd years ago, and then stood proudly with my wife Peggy on the bimah as we celebrated our children, Zachary and Leah’s, B’Nai Mitzvot with Rabbi Myers and Cantor Linder.  This living, breathing example of L’dor v’Dor that I, like many of us here at TBD, have experienced makes ensuring TBD’s future such a necessity.  I have previously served on the TBD Board of Trustees as Program Trustee, VP of Planning and Development, and most recently, as VP of Operations.  It has been, and continues to be, my honor to give my time and efforts to TBD in order to help provide for its well-being.

Professionally, I run a boutique law firm in Costa Mesa called Schiffer & Buus, APC, which specializes in civil litigation and appeals involving business, intellectual property, real estate, and employment matters, among many others.  I have been an attorney for twenty years and am a certified appellate law specialist, handling appellate matters statewide and around the country in both state and federal courts.  In addition to serving on TBD’s Board of Trustees, I am also a member of Southwestern Law School’s Alumni Board of Trustees (my law school alma mater) where I offer expertise in matters involving Academic and Professional Development for law students and alumni.  I was also previously appointed by the Westminster City Council to chair the Personnel Commission for the City of Westminster, which I did for two years.  My greatest and most rewarding role, however, is that of father and husband.  I look forward to working with our clergy, staff, and members to help ensure TBD’s continued success.


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Neil Kornswiet VP, Ways & Means

Neil Kornswiet
V.P., Ways & Means

My family and I have been members of Temple Beth David for more than 20 years.  All three of our children celebrated their Bar and Bat Mitzvahs at Temple Beth David.  I am excited to assist the Temple with its fundraising efforts.

In terms of my background, I am both a lawyer and accountant by training.  I currently run a hedge fund located in Fashion Island called Optium Capital LLC.  Prior to forming Optium, I was President and a Director of Pacific Mercantile Bank, a publicly traded bank headquartered in Costa Mesa, CA  I have also been a Managing Director for UBS Investment Bank running loan origination and servicing throughout the United States.  Before joining UBS, I formed and ran three large financial institutions that ultimately became publicly traded companies.

Prior to entering the financial services industry, I was a partner in the national law firm of McKenna, Conner and Cuneo specializing in corporate finance, corporate securities, commercial lending, residential lending and operational matters for some of the largest financial institutions and investment banks in the country.  I received my law degree from Georgetown University Law Center and my undergraduate business degree from the Ohio State University.

Finally, I am involved in many charitable and civic endeavors including the Orangewood Children’s Home, the Arthritis Foundation, and the Sage Hill School, among others.

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Florence Sudakow V.P. Membership

Florence Sudakow and her family have been members of Temple Beth David since the mid-1970s.  Her husband, Max, was President of TBD and a revered Temple member.  Her daughter, Sarah, has handcrafted many of the table runners for oneg shabbats, her son, James, has played Kol Nidre on the violin for many years.  Prior to being asked to assume the position of Membership Vice-President for the Temple (which is an honor and somewhat frightening at the same time: a very crucial position), Florence has been President of the Choir for the past six years, and was both President and Woman of Merit for the Temple Beth David Sisterhood.  She has served on the Temple board for several years and looks forward to continued involvement.

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Adam Bernstein Secretary

Adam Bernstein
V.P. Education

My family joined Temple Beth David approximately 10 years ago.  We have three sons, Ben, Zach, and Aaron.  All of our boys have attended TBD preschool and religious school and have been bar mitzvahs at TBD.  I am an elementary school principal for a local school district and serve as an adjunct faculty instructor at National University.  My wife, Julie is a teacher at a local middle school.  Growing up, I was active with my synagogue in Los Angeles and stayed active in Jewish groups during my years in college at the University of California at Santa Barbara.  My family appreciates the warm and friendly atmosphere at Temple Beth David.  I look forward to being able to continue to serve the congregation as VP of Education.

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Charlie Niederman

Charlie Niederman
V.P. Planning & Development

My wife, Cathy, and I have been members of Temple Beth David for more than 35 years.  We lived here in the 60’s before the Temple had any buildings and returned in 1982, the first year the sanctuary was complete.

We have four daughters, two named at Temple Beth David in the 60’s. Three were confirmed at TBD in the 80’s. Our third daughter, Debbie was married at TBD in the 1992.  I have served on the Temple Board as a trustee and in 5 officer positions and among other Brotherhood positions as Brotherhood Religious Action Chair.  I serve on two commissions of the Union for Reform Judaism, the parent organization of Reform Judaism.  I’m looking forward to continuing as Vice President for Planning and Development to work with our President, Board, and Rabbi in developing revenue sources and planning for the Temple’s future.

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Robin-Harrison

Robin Harrison V.P. Religious Practices

 

 

My wife Mulu and I have been married for 24 years. We have two incredible daughters, Candice and Robin (who had her Bat Mitzvah in December 2013). I am currently in my eighteenth year of proudly teaching for the Los Angeles Unified School District.  My greatest loves in life, outside of my family, are classic movies, history, drawing, performing, magic, and occasionally fishing.

It has been an incredible pleasure being a part of the Temple Beth David community for over two years. The extended family I have found here has allowed my own family a closeness it has not experienced before. We have been so proud to share in the joy of being so active in Brotherhood, Sisterhood, choir, and so many other rewarding aspects of life as a member of the Temple.

Being a board member of Temple Beth David, as the Adult Education trustee, allows me the opportunity to be an active, contributing part of the intellectual and spiritual growth of this wonderful place; a part of which I am so honored to have been entrusted.
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My wife Robin and I, along with our two daughters, Rachel and Sarah, have been a part of the Temple Beth David family for the past 12 years. We have had many life cycle events at the temple to include B’nai Mitzvah for Robin, Rachel and Sarah.  We have also been involved in many temple functions and both Sarah and Rachel have attended religious school and been involved in the temple youth programs.
I am a member of the temple brotherhood and have taken an active role in temple activities and committees over the years. 

I am running for Building and Grounds and look forward to working with the board, staff and temple members on future projects

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I have been a member of the Temple Beth David family for 18 years, and on the Board in various capacities throughout the years.  I have served in the Program Chair position and have also been active on the committee since the beginning.

Program Trustee

Program Trustee

 

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Bob Altman & Michelle Sandler Publicity Trustees

Bob Altman & Michelle Sandler
Publicity Trustees

 

Bob and Michelle are pleased to be asked to serve again as Publicity Trustee.  Michelle has been a member of Temple Beth David since 1963 – only a year or so shy of being a “founding” member.  Bob joined in 1995 when he married into the Sandler clan.  Prior to being asked to serve as Publicity trustees, Michelle had already been active organizing and cataloging the TBD library, and Bob had been active with the choir for many years.  Two years ago we joined the TBD Board of Directors as co-Publicity Trustees.   At this point we’ve developed something of a routine: Michelle feeds temple happenings to about 10 free news feeds around Orange County and Long Beach every month.  Bob takes care of paid ads, print media, and B’nei Mitzvah announcements

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Lynne Horn Social Action Trustee

Lynne Horn
Social Action Trustee

 

During the past year I have been Program Trustee, working with a committee to bring the synaplexes to the members.  We also did special programs.  I am hoping to be Social Action Trustee so that I can bring positive change to our temple through programs such as:  The Compassionate Cities Program, blood drives, food drives, helping people in need through collecting clothing and other new programs.

I have been a member of the temple since 1980 and have appreciated all that the temple, and its members and staff, have done for me through the years.  I would like the opportunity to continue to give back to Temple Beth David.

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