Meet Our Incredible Clergy
Rabbi Ethan Prosnit, Senior Rabbi
Rabbi Ethan Prosnit is a graduate of Clark University with a BA in African History and a Masters in Teaching. He received his Rabbinic Ordination and his Masters in Hebrew Letters from Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR). Rabbi Prosnit is passionate about pursuing social justice and making connections with global Jewry. He currently is the co-chair of Reform Jewish Voice of New Jersey, an arm of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism (RAC), working with Reform Jews across New Jersey to join together with a strong and effective voice. He is a Rabbi Balfour Brickner Fellow through the Religious Action Center and served on the Joint Distribution Committee-Entwine board. Prior to becoming a rabbi, Ethan taught eleventh grade United States history and coached boys tennis in the Worcester public schools, worked at Tufts University Hillel, and partnered with American Jewish World Service (AJWS) and the Joint Distribution Committee (JDC). Rabbi Prosnit is an avid sports fan, rooting hard for the Jets, Mets and Toronto Blue Jays (usually to no avail) and is a tennis player, skier, and loves the outdoors. Rabbi Prosnit joined the Temple Emanu-El community in the summer of 2014. He lives in Westfield with his wife Arielle, and children Caleb, Zoe and Asher.
Cantor Martha Novick, Senior Cantor
Cantor Novick received a Bachelor of Science in Music Performance and a Master of Arts in Music Education from New York University. She also received a Bachelor of Sacred Music from Hebrew Union College, School of Sacred Music, where she was invested as Cantor in May of l983.
Cantor Novick has performed leading roles in opera for the Metropolitan Opera Association, the National Shakespeare Theatre, CBS and PBS Television, NYC Radio, The Center for New Music in New York, and the Liederkranz Opera Workshop. She has been soloist with the Jerusalem Symphony, The Brooklyn Philharmonia, Musica Hebraica, Sela and the Hebrew Arts Chorale. Cantor Novick has served on the Board of the American Conference of Cantors, the Commission on Synagogue Music, the Advisory Board and Review Board of Transcontinental Music Publishing, and currently serves as Vice President of the American Society for Jewish Music.
Cantor Novick had the distinction of being the first female Cantor to perform in a traditional Cantorial Concert in a major concert hall in New York. She made a CD of Yiddish Art Songs Music for the Miliken Foundation Archives of Twentieth Century American Jewish Composers, and a CD of High Holiday Music for Transcontinental Music Publishing.
Cantor Novick is a member of the faculty at The Hebrew Union College, School of Sacred Music and The Jewish Theological Seminary of America, Miller Cantorial School.
Rabbi Victor Appell, Associate Rabbi
Rabbi Appell, a native New Yorker, grew up in the Reform Movement. In high school, he served as a regional NFTY president. After working in sales and marketing, Rabbi Appell pursued his lifelong dream of becoming a rabbi. After ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, he served congregations in Illinois and New Jersey. Rabbi Appell then joined the staff of the Union for Reform Judaism where over the years, he served as the Director of Small Congregations, Co-Director of the Joint Commission on Synagogue Management, Outreach and Marketing Consultant, Congregational Marketing Director and editor-in-chief of Ten Minutes of Torah. Most recently, Rabbi Appell served as Reform Community Rabbi and Senior Jewish Educator at Rutgers Hillel.
Rabbi Appell’s writings have appeared in Achim Magazine, Torat Chayim, Ten Minutes of Torah, Kulanu Handbook, The Gender Gap, and The Still Small Voice – Reflections on Being a Jewish Man.
Rabbi Appell, his husband and their two sons live in Metuchen, NJ.
Cantor Ilana Goldman, Assistant Cantor
Cantor Goldman is a Jersey Girl – originally from Ocean Township, NJ. She spent her senior year of high school at Interlochen Arts Academy in MI and continued her education at Lawrence University in Appleton, WI where she majored in music and religious studies with a minor in psychology. She received her Masters of Sacred Music and was ordained from Hebrew Union College- Jewish Institute of Religion.
During her time in cantorial school she had the privilege of holding several student pulpits at diverse congregations including Temple Micah in Washington D.C, Vassar Temple in Poughkeepsie, Scarsdale Synagogue and East End Temple in NY. She especially values her training as a chaplain intern at Bellevue Hospital where she completed two units of Clinical Pastoral Education bringing music, prayer and comfort to patients during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ilana feels a connection to the Divine and her ancestors when she is leading congregants in prayer, bringing students to Torah for the first time, taking a long run on the boardwalk with her father, singing duets with her mother on the cello, cheering on the Yankees with her 93-year-oldgrandfather, and exploring new cities with her husband, Alex.
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Rabbi Charles A. Kroloff, Rabbi Emeritus
Rabbi Kroloff served as Senior Rabbi of Temple Emanu-El for 36 years, from 1966 until his retirement in 2002. He and his wife, Dr. Terry Kroloff, still reside in Westfield. On his retirement, the new educational wing of the Temple was named The Rabbi Charles A. Kroloff Center for Jewish Learning. He is the past president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, the largest rabbinic organization in the world.
Rabbi Kroloff currently is Vice President for Special Projects of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York City. He remains active in the Westfield area, through leadership in Temple Emanu-El’s I Have A Dream program in Plainfield and the Westfield Foundation as past president, speaking at area synagogues, and providing rabbinic life cycle services.
Rabbi Kroloff earned his B.A. magna cum laude at Yale University and rabbinic ordination at Hebrew Union College, Cincinnati. Before coming to Westfield, he was Assistant Rabbi at Temple Israel, Boston, and Rabbi of Community Reform Temple, Westbury, NY. A past president of ARZA, the Association of Reform Zionists of America, he was a member of the governing boards of the Jewish Agency, Hebrew Union College, and the Union for Reform Judaism. He was a founder of the Interfaith Council for the Homeless of Union County and, following retirement, Interim Rabbi at Stephen Wise Free Synagogue, New York City.
Rabbinic Intern, Becky Jaye
Photo Credit: Josh Levine Photo