Ellen Goldberg, Sisterhood Co-President

Ellen has a lifetime of experience with her involvement in the Jewish religion and the synagogues she has been involved with. It began at the age of 10 when she asked her parents if she could go to religious school. Growing up in NJ, the family belonged to Temple Emanu’El in Edison. Her parents did not feel it was necessary for her to go to religious school prior to that, but when she asked to attend, they were happy to enroll her. She quickly caught up to her peers because of her motivation to learn about Judaism. Although she wanted to have a Bat Mitzvah, her grandfather passed away suddenly just before she would begin her lessons and her mother told her that there would be no “big party” if she were to have the religious ceremony. At the age of 12, the “party” was really what mattered most. She decided not to study for her Bat Mitzvah. However, she still enjoyed her Jewish education. In 8th grade, she discovered the temple’s Youth Group and became very active. She took on several leadership roles including President in both her junior and senior year of high school. She also went on to Confirmation in 10th grade.

When Ellen graduated from the University of Maryland in 1985, she came home from college and learned that the Youth Group was no longer operating. She volunteered to start the group from scratch. Within five years, she built the Youth Group to almost 70 members and most of them were very active. Several years later after getting married and starting a family, she became the Junior Youth Group advisor at Monmouth Reform Temple and continued in that position for ten years. She also had a very active group with many members throughout those years.

Ellen and Jay were married in 1989 and moved to Tinton Falls. Before their one year anniversary, their first son, Joshua, was born. The family continued to be involved at the temple in Edison. In 1993, Jeremy came along and it was time to start going to a Temple closer to home. Ellen began to take her children to a program at MRT for preschoolers once a month in the evening. It was run by a wonderful woman named, Adaya, who brought such joy to the children teaching them about Judaism through song and projects. Josh and Jeremy had the good fortune of being a part of this wonderful program. The family became members of the temple and the children went through religious school and then the boys went on to confirmation. Throughout all the years Ellen still wanted her B’nai Mitzvah. With a lot of hard work and determination she joined a class with other adults to study and ultimately achieve her goal. Thank you to Rabbi Roos and Cantor Clissold for helping to make it happen. In addition to all that, both Josh and Jeremy chose Monmouth Reform Temple as the recipient of their Eagle Scout projects.

A retired school teacher after 30 years of educating in the public school system she took on two roles at MRT. Ellen is the co-president of the Sisterhood working alongside the fabulous Nancy Zaslowe. In addition to that, she took on the position as the Mitzvah Academy teacher in the religious school in the 8th and 9th grade. Ellen regularly attends most of the special services at MRT. She plays Mah Jongg with the Sisterhood just about every week, helps with Gan Mazon whenever she can and volunteers with Family Promise. She enjoys being a Greeter at the High Holy Day services. This past year was special, because she had a wonderful experience helping her MRT students create a video for the 60th Anniversary of MRT. She is ALWAYS ready with a Smile and a great hug. She has been enjoying her experience as co president of Sisterhood and looks forward to continuing for a few more years.

Co written by Jay and Ellen Goldberg