John N. Louie, President
Temple Sinai Board of Trustees
Every year, the President invites all the member families of Temple Sinai to gather in the synagogue during the month of May or June. This year, our meeting will be Sunday, June 23rd at 3:00 pm. Please note that this year’s meeting will be in the afternoon.
At the meeting, the Board will give you the latest update on the financial condition of our synagogue including a review of the year about to end, our first year with the Rabbis Zober. You will hear about the budget your Board has approved for the next fiscal year, starting July 1. I will also honor our “18+” Sinai volunteers, most of whom have dedicated much more than the Chai חי hours we are recognizing.
I will present the nominees for a new Board of Trustees for a vote of approval by the Members present. For the coming July 2019 – June 2020 fiscal year, your Board has endorsed a full slate of nominees for all elected positions on the Board. This new slate increases the diversity and range of experience of the Board. We are all very grateful to Howard Holden and the Nominating Committee for their fabulous work putting the Slate together! Each member family in good financial standing is given one vote. We want you to attend and exercise your vote. Everyone is invited to attend and participate in the meeting and join in the conversation.
Changes to our synagogue Bylaws can only be made by vote of the congregation at this meeting. The Board has approved a suggested change to the Bylaws, to allow us to hold a larger proportion of Sinai’s funds in accounts that are not FDIC-insured. The past several years, the Board has been out of compliance with the Bylaws by holding significant bequests and special funds in safe, diversified indexed mutual and money-market funds. To ensure that we can continue to get a return on these funds that outpaces inflation, we need to raise the allowable proportion of Sinai funds that can be held in such accounts.
Below you will find the Agenda, as well as the Slate, and the proposed Bylaw change. Temple Sinai members may submit additional items for the Agenda to the Secretary, Steve Weidman, no later than June 3, 2019 in accordance with the provisions in our by-laws. Also, additional nominations to the Board of Trustees may be made by petition of five percent (5%) of the Membership Units in good financial standing, which is eight Members, with the petition being filed with the Secretary, Steve Weidman, also no later than June 3, 2019. No nominations will be accepted at the meeting. If no other items or nominations are received by the deadline, the Agenda is final, and the Board-approved Slate stands alone.
I look forward to seeing and speaking with all of you soon! Remember, 3:00 pm on Sunday, June 23.
- Call to Order
- D’var Torah – Rabbi Zober
- President’s Address – John Louie
- Volunteer Appreciation – John Louie
- Congregational Election of Members of the Board of Trustees
- Congregational discussion and vote on Proposed Bylaw Change
- Summary of 2018-2019 financial information – Jay Goldberg
- Presentation of Budget for Fiscal Year 2019-2020 – Jay Goldberg
- Congregation Member Comments
Slate of Nominees for the Temple Sinai Board of Trustees
For Six Executive Committee Positions, for two-year terms ending June 30, 2021
- President – Michael Gorden
- 1st Vice President – Beth Slamowitz
- 2nd Vice President – Russ Kotlicky
- Financial Officer – Jay Goldberg
- Treasurer – Marilyn Roberts
- Secretary – Ignacio Montoya
For Five Member-at-Large Positions, for one-year terms ending June 30, 2020
- Tova McGilvray
- Jeremy Gelman
- Evangelyna Thurman-Silva
- Lynda Goldman
- Sarah Friedman
Bylaws for Discussion & Vote
Proposed Temple Sinai Bylaw Change
Article VII – Funds
Temple funds may be invested in the following ways:
- Any or all of the funds may be deposited into a checking or interest-bearing account, or certificates of deposit, in any federally insured bank, federally insured savings and loan institution, or credit union, not to exceed the maximum amount insured by the FDIC, or in the case of a credit union, NCUA, in any single institution. Additionally, any amount of funds may be invested in a money market mutual fund at an investment company registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940.
- A maximum of 75% of these funds may be invested in broad-based stock mutual funds or bond mutual funds, not specializing in any specific industry or sector, held at an investment company registered under the Investment Company Act of 1940.
- A maximum of 20% of these funds may be invested in Israel Bonds; however, any such investments will reduce the funds available for investment under paragraph 2.
Current Wording in the Bylaws
Article VII – Funds
All Temple reserve funds and no less than seventy percent (70%) of all other Temple
funds shall be invested in bonds or obligations of the United States of America or any
state, or of the State of Israel, or any Agency of them, or any mutual fund invested
solely in the above, or deposited in a checking or interest-bearing account in any
federally insured bank or federally insured savings and loan association.
A maximum of thirty percent (30%) of Temple funds other than reserve funds may be
invested in bonds, certificates of deposit, or interests in any mutual funds registered
under the Investment Company Act of 1940.
Board Slate Bios
Michael Gorden – President
I grew up in Southern California for about 10 years and then moved to Reno in 1986. I grew up in a Reform Jewish Home. As a youth and an adult, I have always ensured to the best of my ability to belong to a Synagogue. I have been happily married (Don’t tell my wife) to my wife Jennifer for almost 14 years now and we have three rambunctious children – Nathaniel 11 years, Shalom 10 years (no he is not peaceful), and that red-headed child who everyone thinks is cute–boy she has everyone fooled–Sasha 4 years. I am a Social Worker and have been working for the State of Nevada for about 12 years and currently am the Manager of three District Offices for Medicaid. I also have been in the Bowling business (My Hobby) for over 25 years. Currently, I am a supervisor at Coconut Bowl and I am an Association Manager for the Greater Reno-Sparks Bowling Association. My family and I have been a member for about 5 years currently. I attended services as a teenager and into adulthood – as long as I have been in the Reno area. I am finishing my 3rd year as a Member-at-Large Board Member. I am completing my second year as the Chair of Building/Grounds and Security. My family and I are always involved with events and holidays and try our best to volunteer time and labor to help out. We are very dedicated to Temple Sinai. I am honored to be nominated for the Position of President for our Greater Sinai Community. I feel that I bring a positive, analytical, methodological, and Social Work perspective to growing and engaging our community in leading Temple Sinai for the next two years.
Beth Slamowitz – First Vice President
I moved to Reno with my family in July of 2013. We have been members of Temple Sinai for almost 6 years. I served on the Board as a Member-at-Large in 2017, and have been the Chair of the Familyhood Committee for the last three years. My husband Adam has also been a member of Temple Sinai’s Board. Our two boys, Russell and Matthew, are active in Sinai School, and Russell will be celebrating his Bar Mitzvah in 2020. I currently work for the State of Nevada Department of Health and Human Services as a Senior Policy Advisor in the field of Pharmacy. Adam and I will be married 13 years this May and we enjoy spending our free time in Lake Tahoe and watching our boys play competitive baseball.
Russ Kotlicky – Second Vice President
My wife Lynn and I moved to Reno from Chicago, IL in May 2006 to join the leadership team at Harley-Davidson Financial Services, the finance arm of Harley-Davidson Motor Company, working as the Director of the Collections, Portfolio Management Team. I have 25 years of business experience including leadership and consulting roles at various finance auto finance companies. I hold a Masters of Business Administration from DePaul University in Chicago and a Bachelors of Science degree from Indiana University. We have been actively involved with Temple Sinai’s familyhood and school programs with our daughter Carly. I have been actively involved with many Temple Sinai volunteer opportunities over the past several years, including a lead role mentoring and facilitating the Temple Sinai co-sponsoring efforts to the Syrian refugee family, the Zarours. More recently, I served on the 2017-2018 Rabbi Search Committee and helped with the rabbi transition plan efforts and I started as 2nd Vice President, Membership Chair in July 2018. I have been a member of the Sinai community for 10 years. In addition to my time at Sinai, my family started into the world of RV adventures last year, and I also have enjoyed some great chartered fishing trips.
Jay Goldberg – Chief Financial Officer
Jay and his wife Amy moved to Reno from New Jersey in January 2016. He works as the Vice President, Internal Audit at Employers Holdings Inc., a workers’ compensation insurance company. He was elected as a Member-at-Large in June 2017 and has been serving as the Financial Officer of Temple Sinai since October 2017. Previously, he served on several Temple Boards, both in Houston and New Jersey, as a member-at-large and in Vice President and Secretary roles, and Judaism has always been an important part of his life. He has over 25 years of business experience including starting and leading the internal audit function at various companies, both public and private, for over 15 years. Jay is a Certified Internal Auditor, Certified Fraud Examiner, and Certified Financial Services Auditor and has a Certification in Risk Management Assurance. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Bentley University McCallum Graduate School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Brandeis University.
Ignacio Montoya – Secretary
Though I came to Reno from New York City, my roots are in the West. I was born in southern New Mexico and was raised in a small town on the border of the United States and Mexico. At the age of 13, I moved with my family to Arizona, where they continue to live in the Phoenix metropolitan area. After graduating from Harvard College with a bachelor’s degree in psychology, I became a teacher. My first teaching assignment was a kindergarten and first grade bilingual class in Los Angeles. I continued to teach for eleven years at the elementary and middle school level in Los Angeles and then New York prior to beginning my graduate work in linguistics. While in New York City, I formalized the interest in Judaism that I had been cultivating for several years. I officially converted in June 2010. While in New York, I was a member of B’nai Jeshurun, where I participated regularly in services, took adult education classes, and volunteered for the homeless shelter associated with the synagogue. Upon completing my Ph.D. at The Graduate Center of the City University of New York, I moved to Reno in August of 2017 to begin my job as an assistant professor at the University of Nevada, Reno. Among my current research interests are Indigenous languages and language revitalization. For my dissertation, I focused on Hebrew, Navajo, and Spanish. I continue to be interested in those languages and have also started to study the Indigenous languages of the area, starting with Northern Paiute. My first weekend in Reno I attended Kabbalat Shabbat services at Temple Sinai, and from that point on I have been involved with the synagogue in a wide variety of capacities and have formed strong connections with many members of the Temple Sinai community. In addition to attending Shabbat and other holiday services regularly, I have also served on the Jewish Practice Committee and on the organizing committee for Shabbat Unplugged. I participated in the adult b’nei mitzvah class and chanted Torah not only in the b’nei mitzvah service but also for Rosh Hashanah, Simchat Torah, and for a Saturday morning service. I have also led Torah study and a Friday night service when the rabbis were away. In addition to my involvement with Temple Sinai, I spend my non-work time in Reno skiing during the winter, hiking during the summer, and meeting up with friends for meals and movies throughout the whole year.
Marilyn Roberts – Treasurer
Marilyn and her husband Ken have lived in the Reno/Sparks area for 12 years after moving from Brea, CA where they lived for 30 years. They have two grown children still living in Orange County. Keith is a lead software engineer and Jennifer is a CPA with Ernst and Young. Marilyn has a BA in Math and an MBA in Operations Research and Accounting from UCLA. She ‘retired’ from a yogurt manufacturer doing purchasing, inventory management, and plant accounting. She has served on several synagogue boards and was the Administrator/Financial VP at Adat Ari for 11 years, and Religious Practices VP at Temple Beth Tikvah for eight years, both in Orange County. She has been the Chair of Temple Sinai Jewish Practice Committee for several years, involved with the finance committee, and has also served as treasurer on the Temple Sinai Board. She has been a member of the Sinai community for 12 years.
Sarah Friedman – Member-at-Large
I have been very pleased to join the most recent generation of new Temple Sinai members. Joining Temple Sinai upon moving to Reno in 2017 was one of the best decisions I’ve made as a new Reno resident. Friends I’ve made through the temple have already helped my family make our transition from Los Angeles, CA (where I’d finished graduate school) to Reno. The meal train organized after the birth of our son was welcoming beyond belief, and I’ve taken great joy in helping to set up meal trains for other families over the past year as the Caring Committee Meal Train organizer. I’ve enjoyed bringing my family to Friday night services with long-time and new members alike and getting to know the congregation at our onegs.
My Jewish identify was forged at B’nai Israel, a reform synagogue in Sacramento, Ca. One of my first jobs was working as a madricha and as a song leader bringing camp and Israeli folks songs to the Sunday school classes. As a child and teenager, I spent several wonderful summers at Camp Swig, a Jewish summer camp in the Santa Cruz mountains, learning about Jewish traditions and developing a strong sense of social justice. Between leaving Sacramento for college on the East Coast and eventually moving to Reno (14 years for anyone counting), my sense of social justice steered me towards a career in public health, with a strong interest in reducing health disparities throughout the healthcare system. I now teach health policy and research methods in the UNR School of Community Health Sciences and have recently embarked on a new role as the UNR Hillel faculty co-Advisor to students. I have been a member of the Sinai community for two years, and it would be an honor to further contribute to the Jewish community as a Member-At-Large on the Temple Sinai Board.
Jeremy Gelman – Member-at-Large
I was born and raised in Denver, CO and grew up in a very active Jewish home. I attended Jewish Day School, went to a Jewish summer camp, and was very involved with the B’nai B’rith Youth Organization (BBYO) in high school. After graduating from college, I pursued a Ph.D. in Political Science at the University of Michigan. I completed my degree in 2016 and was hired to work in the UNR Political Science Department. Instead of moving to Reno right away, I spent a year working in the United States Senate. My wife, Michelle, and I finally arrived in the summer of 2017 and quickly became a part of the Sinai community. In my free time, I enjoy traveling, hiking, and watching my hometown Denver sports teams.
Evangelyna Thurman-Silva – Member-at-Large
I grew up in Jamestown, California, a small town about an hour west of Yosemite, but I’ve lived in several other states before coming to Reno. This will be my second year in Reno, I moved for a job as a 911 dispatcher after being a paramedic for a number of years. I currently work from home as a transcriptionist to give me more time with my family and to be able to homeschool my son. I love to travel, especially road trips with my family. I also like to read and play musical instruments. I enjoy needlework – sewing, knitting, needlepoint, cross stitch. I’m starting to get into weaving as well. We have only been Sinai members for a short time, I think since the beginning of the school year. Our son attends the Hebrew school on Sundays and primarily my involvement has been with that. I’ll make suggestions to the Rabbis if I have an idea that I think would be fun and engaging for families in regards to holidays. If I come across a curriculum I think would be good to implement or games for the kids to try during Hebrew school, I’ll bring it up. I think it’s important to help keep the children engaged and learning and excited about being Jewish; they’re the future. I would love to be involved in any way that I can to help keep Sinai going strong in the years to come.
Lynda Goldman – Member-at-Large
Lynda moved to Reno in 2014 and immediately joined Temple Sinai (TS). She has served on the TS Board and as a member of various committees. She is passionately committed to our TS Mission, Vision, and Values. Lynda’s Jewish heritage is central to her identity and informs how she lives her life.
Lynda is a Leadership and Organizational Development Consultant, working primarily in academia, healthcare, and financial services. She attended the University of Massachusetts at Amherst for her undergraduate and master’s degrees and The George Washington University for her doctoral degree.
Lynda grew up in Miami Beach, FL. She is blessed with a daughter, Monica, a son-in-law, Peter, and a 3-year-old grandson, Thomas; all living in the Bay Area. She is fortunate to have three sisters, and multiple nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews in Southern California and Florida as well as many wonderful friends. She is also most grateful for our amazing TS Kehillah!
Tova McGilvray – Member-at-Large
Tova McGilvray was “Battle Born” and raised in Reno, Nevada and is a graduate of UNR’s writing program. She has worked in Title and Escrow for six years and looks forward to a long career helping people make Reno their home. She trained most of her life as a dancer and thespian, and cut her teeth at leadership managing and choreographing productions. Her experience co-founding the Nada Dada Art Show exposed her to the plight of the residents in Reno’s weekly motels and introduced her to community activism. While always identified as a Nevada Jew, it was not until attending Temple Sinai only three years ago that she found a home where she could practice community service from a proudly Jewish perspective. Tova now chairs the Temple Sinai Social Action Committee, sits on the Temple Board and is the upcoming president of the Rotary Club of Reno Midtown.