Melton Learning in ASL - Jewish Deaf Resource Center

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Jewish Deaf Resource Center
PO Box 318 Hartsdale, NY 10530
 @Jewish Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Resource Center

Melton in ASL is partially funded by the Jewish Deaf Resource Center's operating grant from UJA Federation of New York.

Director of Melton in ASL Pilot

School DirectorSusan Cohen is the Jewish Deaf Resource Center's third president. Originally from Brooklyn, New York, Ms. Cohen was born Deaf to hearing parents and raised in a Conservative Jewish household. Her siblings had the bar and bat mitzvahs that she did not have because such opportunities were not available to her as a Deaf person. Inequities such as these inspired her passion to increase communication access in the wider Jewish community. Ms. Cohen was elected president of JDRC in February 2021. She believes that the JDRC has given her a platform to forge partnerships with the Deaf and Hard of Hearing community and the wider Jewish community to increase communication access through education and advocacy. Ms. Cohen has been integral in the collaborative initiative of a national ASL Shabbat Coalition which was founded in April 2020 shortly after the onset of the pandemic, when four Jewish Deaf organizations created an online ASL spiritual community.  

Faculty of Melton in ASL Pilot
School DirectorA native of Los Angeles, California, Rabbi Rebecca L. Dubowe was ordained by Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and has served several synagogues in different cities, including Thousand Oaks, CA, Hollywood, CA, and New Brunswick, NJ. Currently, she is the rabbi for Moses Montefiore Congregation in Bloomington, IL. Since her arrival during the summer of 2015, Rabbi Dubowe has played an active role as the spokesperson on behalf of the small but vibrant Jewish community in Bloomington. She serves as the co-chair of the Faith and Outreach committee associated with the Not In Our Town organization, a grassroots movement focused on stopping hate, addressing bullying, and building safe, inclusive communities for all. In addition, Rabbi Dubowe co-founded the McLean County Interfaith Alliance, which promotes interfaith dialogue and fellowship within the greater Bloomington Normal faith communities. In 2016, Rabbi Dubowe was awarded an honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from Delaware Valley University, PA, and in 2018, she received an honorary Doctorate of Divinity from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. An avid learner of theology, Rabbi Dubowe’s most recent essay was included in Because My Soul Longs for You: Integrating Theology into our Lives, a book recently published by CCAR Press (Central Conference of American Rabbis). Besides serving the rabbinate full-time, Rabbi Dubowe also offers her time to the greater Jewish Deaf Community, including teaching the first-ever Introduction to Judaism in ASL in partnership with the Union of Reform Judaism, which she is currently teaching. This community has a special place in Rabbi Dubowe’s life as she is the first female Deaf rabbi ordained in the world. Rabbi Dubowe has spoken at numerous synagogues throughout the country, written various articles, and led webinars on the importance of inclusion within the Jewish community.

Contact Details

Voice or text: 917-705-8941
Susan Cohen

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