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West Hartford Welcomes Ruthie Braffman Shulman as Community Scholar

(Courtesy of Young Israel of West Hartford) The Young Israel of West Hartford is thrilled to announce the hiring of Ruthie Braffman Shulman to fill the newly created role of Young Israel Community Scholar. In this role, Shulman will work with the synagogue’s leadership to serve our ever-growing community and enhance our Torah and learning opportunities and programming. Through in-person visits and remote engagements on Zoom and by phone, she will create a presence in town and be accessible from afar.

In addition, Shulman will serve as Greater Hartford’s first yoetzet halacha (lit. Jewish law counselor) providing counseling and halachic (Jewish legal) guidance in matters of family purity, intimacy and women’s health. She will become the only woman between the New York metro area and Boston certified in the Orthodox community to answer and support women and families in matters of taharat hamishpacha, or Jewish family purity.

Shulman comes to this role with deep experience in supporting and engaging a wide range of Jewish communities. She served as campus educator at the University of Pennsylvania and Drexel University with the Orthodox Union’s Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus (OU-JLIC). She worked as the director of education at the Manhattan Jewish Experience (MJE). Most recently, she served as the director of education and engagement and as a Devorah Scholar at United Orthodox Synagogues of Houston. Shulman holds a B.A. from Stern College and an M.A. from Yeshiva University’s Graduate Program for Advanced Talmud Studies (GPATS) and is completing her training as a yoetzet halacha through Nishmat’s Miriam Glaubach Yoatzot Halacha Fellows Program.

“We are so delighted to welcome Ruthie Braffman Shulman to our professional team,” shared Rabbi Tuvia Brander, Young Israel’s mara d’atra (spiritual leader). “She combines many years of advanced learning with remarkable programmatic creativity and tremendous interpersonal skills.” He added, “Her work as a yoetzet halacha will be absolutely critical in supporting and serving Greater Hartford’s Jewish community.”

This position was made possible through a collaboration with and a generous grant from Micah Philanthropies and trustees Ann and Jeremy Pava. “We are thrilled to support this new initiative here at the Young Israel of West Hartford,” explained Jeremy Pava. “Under Rabbi Brander’s leadership, our community has become a vital and growing center of Jewish life.”

Founded in 1968, the Young Israel of West Hartford is at the forefront of Jewish life in the Greater Hartford region. Committed to strengthening our connection to our heritage, the Torah; tradition, the Mesorah; and our homeland, the state of Israel, Young Israel inspires personal growth and social responsibility while cultivating a community of warmth, kindness, prayer and vibrant Jewish living. To learn more, visit youngisraelwh.org. To contact Ruthie Braffman Shulman, email [email protected] or call 484-430-4848.

Join us to welcome and meet Ruthie Braffman Shulman on Saturday night, January 29, at 8 p.m. for a special virtual melave malka. RSVP at www.youngisraelwh.org/melavamalka

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