March 19, 2018 ❘ 3rd of Nisan, 5778

Friends and Fellow Congregants,

Since Cantor Barry Reich announced that he would retire in June 2018, the congregation has been engaged in a search for a new cantor. We knew that getting this search right was of tremendous importance. Our congregation has been extremely lucky to have Cantor Barry’s inspired and loving musical leadership for over 50 years. As he moves into the role of Cantor Emeritus, he leaves an extraordinary legacy. Thus, we embarked on our search for a new cantor knowing that we were not looking for someone to fill Cantor Barry’s shoes, but rather someone who could build on his legacy with their own ways of inspiring, teaching, uplifting, and giving voice to our traditions and values.

We are therefore thrilled to announce that Alexandra Fox will join Peninsula Temple Sholom on July 1, 2018. Cantor Fox is an exceptional and versatile clergy member. She holds a Bachelor of Science in music from Hofstra University and a Masters in sacred music from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, and will be ordained in May following completion of her studies at the Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music at HUC-JIR. She worked as a student cantor in three congregations, led song and prayer studies at URJ Goldman Union Camp Institute in Indiana, studied clinical pastoral work at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, and served as student liaison to the Executive Board of the American Conference of Cantors.

We are very excited for the future of music at PTS under Cantor Fox’s leadership. Gracious and kind, Cantor Fox is also deeply passionate about Judaism and about music, and becoming a cantor has been her lifelong dream. She is equally skilled leading worship, working with teens and providing pastoral care, and has already earned a reputation for her warmth and inspiration. And she is just as happy to be joining PTS as we are to welcome her; be sure to read Cantor Fox’s own message to the congregation, below.

Cantor Fox will begin working with the clergy team on worship and b’nai mitzvah immediately upon her arrival on July 1. You will love getting to know Cantor Fox, and there will be ample opportunity to meet her this summer and fall.

We wish to recognize the Cantor Search Committee for their amazing effort in bringing Cantor Fox to PTS. They created an inclusive, smart and collaborative search process that reflected PTS at its best. Our heartfelt thanks goes to Scott Haber (co-chair), Keith Tandowsky (co-chair), Ron Berkovits, Andrea Cohn, Rabbi Lisa Delson, Laura Ehrlich, Rabbi Dan Feder, Jenna Fisher, Neil Heller, Stan Mainzer, Lauren Miller, Rabbi Molly Plotnik, Abigail Reddy, Betsy Rosen, and Darci Rosenblum.

Please join us in extending a very warm welcome to Cantor Fox as she joins our PTS family.


Lauren Schlezinger, President
Rabbi Dan Feder