Our clergy, Rabbi Aaron Starr, Rabbi Yonatan Dahlen, Hazzan David Propis and Assistant Cantor Leonard Gutman are world-class, relatable and accessible to all.
Rabbi Aaron Starr is a rabbinic fellow of the Shalom Hartman Institute’s Rabbinic Leadership Initiative, and serves as our spiritual leader. He is a gifted orator who savors the rich opportunities to inspire and teach at the bimah. He has been a part of the Shaarey Zedek family since 2008, and is a past president of the Rabbinical Assembly-Michigan Region and of the Metropolitan Detroit Board of Jewish Educators. He has played prominent roles in Jewish governance worldwide, and is a celebrated author who frequently writes for the Times of Israel and Detroit Jewish News.
Rabbi Yonatan Dahlen is a newer member of our family, yet wasted no time in imprinting his passionate and energized stamp on our community. He sees his spiritual leadership as a sacred responsibility to bring holiness into everyday life. He has reimagined ways of connecting with our membership, and created new pathways to spirituality, for our members young and old. Rabbi Dahlen is firmly committed to bringing the beauty of Jewish life and learning to anyone, no matter where they are on their Jewish journey.
Hazzan David Propis is a gifted cantorial artist, who has created musical prayer experiences at Congregation Shaarey Zedek that never fail to elevate our sense of spirituality. He has an international reputation and is a prolific recording artist. As a past president of the Cantors Assembly, the largest body of cantors in the world, he was named to the task force to restructure the cantorial school at JTS, amongst his many honors. He creates moving melodies and participatory services on Shabbat and our music on the High Holidays is second to none.
Assistant Cantor Leonard Gutman has been a key part of the leadership of Congregation Shaarey Zedek since 2000, but has been a part of the Shaarey Zedek family for decades. He received his Jewish education at Yeshiva Beth Yehudah and his training includes being under the tutelage of several prominent Chazzanim. He leads our daily minyan, chants Torah, and provides cantorial support and leadership. He has developed a loyal following and built a strong, warm and inclusive minyan community. As our ritual director, he interacts with congregants, and offers tutoring and encouragement for everyone, including those new to synagogue rituals.
Divrei Torah: Messages from our Clergy – Click HERE to read perspectives from our dynamic religious leaders.
Our staff is professional, skilled and energized to support our members and clergy to realize their goals and aspirations.
Our Board of Trustees is hands-on, and reflects our congregation, from all socio-economic backgrounds, ages and sexes.