Contributors (A→Z)

The Open Siddur Project is a volunteer-driven collaboration between folk passionate about Jewish spiritual practice. Some are interested in the Siddur as a technology for preserving and disseminating an evolving history of Jewish ritual, practice, and sacred poetry. Others are energized by the design challenge of crafting Siddurim that function effectively for nurturing spiritual, emotional and creative intelligence. All of us see the potential that creative engagement holds for empowering students and teachers to take ownership of those ingredients comprising their shared cultural inheritance.

The Open Siddur is a non-prescriptive, non-denominational project whose only intent is to help revitalize Judaism by ensuring its collective spiritual resources — the creative content intended for communal use — remain free for creative reuse. The Open Siddur Project invites participation without prejudice towards ethnic heritage, skin color, nationality, belief or non-belief, sex, gender, sexuality or any other consideration. All we ask for is an intellectually honest commitment to the principles and sensibilities preserved in our mission statement.

Cantor Hinda Labovitz
Cantor Hinda Labovitz is the cantor/educator of Ohr Kodesh Congregation in Chevy Chase, MD. She graduated with a masters degree in Judaic studies and cantorial ordination Hebrew College in Newton, MA in June of 2014. She has served as a part-time shlichat tsibbur at Congregation Kehillath Israel in Brookline, MA, the ritual director of Temple Emanu-El in Providence from 2009-2012, and and as the assistant to the conductor for the Zamir Chorale of Boston, with whom she was a proud alto from 2006-2014. Hinda maintains, where she publishes new and translated editions of tekhines texts.
Joy Ladin
Joy Ladin, Gottesman Chair in English at Yeshiva University, is the first openly transgender employee of an Orthodox Jewish institution. Her memoir, Through the Door of Life: A Jewish Journey Between Genders, was a finalist for a National Jewish Book Award, and she was named to the 2012 Forward 50 list of influential or courageous American Jews. A work of creative non-fiction, The Soul of the Stranger, about reading the Torah from a transgender perspective, is due out in 2018 from Brandeis University Press. She is also the author of seven books of poetry, including two Lambda Literary Award finalists, Transmigration and Impersonation. Two new collections, Fireworks in the Graveyard (Headmistress Press) and The Future is Trying to Tell Us Something: New and Selected Poems (Sheep Meadow Press) are coming out in 2017. Her work has been recognized with a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship, a Fulbright Scholarship, an American Council of Learned Societies Research Fellowship, and a Hadassah Brandeis Institute Research Fellowship, among other honors. A nationally recognized speaker on trans and Jewish identity, she was recently named to LGBTQ Nation's Top 50 Transgender Americans list. Links to her work can be found at
Miri Landau (translation)
Miri Landau is a student in Karmiel, Israel.
Gilah Langner
Rabbi Gilah Langner serves as a rabbi, educator, and chaplain in Washington, DC. She is a co-editor of the literary journal for Jewish liturgy and poetry, Kerem. She teaches at The George Washington University and is a coordinator of the Washington Jewish Healing Network.
Mona Lantz Levi (translation)
Mona Lantz Levi, formerly of Bucharest, Romania, lives in Rishon LeZion, Israel.
Berl Lapin (1889–1952) was a Yiddish poet and translator. Born in Grodno, he lived in Argentina 1905–09 and 1913–17 and in the U.S. 1909–13, before settling in New York in 1917. His first lyric collection Umetige Vegn ("Sad Ways," 1910) was completed in Vilna, where he had come under he influence of Chaim Zhitlowsky (as whose personal secretary he served) and the literary group Di Yunge. His excellence as a stylist is reflected in his translations of Shakespeare's Sonnets, Russian lyrics, and American poems, and his collected poems Der Fuler Krug ("The Full Pitcher," 1950).
Israel Meir Lask (1904-1974), born in London, was a journalist and English translator of modern Hebrew stories and poetry.
R' Amichai Lau-Lavie (translation)
Amichai Lau-Lavie is the founding director of Storahtelling, Inc. and the spiritual leader of Lab/Shul. An Israeli-born Jewish educator, writer, and performer, he was hailed by Time Out New York as “Super Star of David,” an “iconoclastic mystic,” and as “one of the most interesting thinkers in the Jewish world” by the New York Jewish Week. He is currently a rabbinical student at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. Amichai was a Jerusalem Fellow at the Mandel Leadership Institute in Israel (2008-2009) and is a consultant to the Reboot Network, a member of the URJ Faculty Team, and a fellow of the new Clergy Leadership Institute. He is the proud Abba of Alice, Ezra, and Charlotte-Hallel.
R' Hillel Ḥayyim Lavery-Yisraëli
Vancouver-born Rabbi Hillel Lavery-Yisraëli joined Beth Jacob in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada in August 2015 after having served as chief rabbi of Gothenburg, Sweden for three years. Before that, he was the rabbi of a large Masorti/Conservative congregation in Netanya, and a teacher of Talmud and other Judaic fields at the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem. He has authored numerous articles, some of which can be seen here and here. Click here to watch his lecture, "Gender, Sexuality and Identity in the Jewish Tradition". More of his instructional videos can be found on youtube here and here.
Yonah Lavery-Yisraeli
Rabbi Yonah Lavery-Yisraeli lives in Hamilton, Ontario, having previously lived in Toronto, Gothenberg, Sweden, and Jerusalem, where she received most of her rabbinic/traditional education. Yonah’s illustrations of Masekheth Berakhoth have been featured in three exhibitions and have toured numerous art galleries in Israel, Canada, and the United States. She is also a soferet stam with experience in writing sifrei Torah, mezuzot, megillot, ketubot, and gitin. She is familiar with Ashkenazi, Sephardic, and Yemenite sofrut conventions.
Emma Lazarus
Emma Lazarus (July 22, 1849 – November 19, 1887) was a Sepharadi Jewish-American poet, writer, translator, and Georgist from New York City. Her sonnet "The New Colossus" (1883), was inscribed and installed in 1903 on a bronze plaque on the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty. Upon the proscriptive May Laws of 1881 Lazarus rose to the defense of Russian-Jewish immigrants in powerful articles contributed to The Century (May, 1882, and February 1883). Lazarus became more interested in her Jewish ancestry after reading the George Eliot novel Daniel Deronda, and as she heard of the Russian pogroms that followed the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881. As a result of this anti-Semitic violence, thousands of destitute Ashkenazi Jews emigrated from the Russian Pale of Settlement to New York. Lazarus began to advocate on behalf of indigent Jewish refugees. She helped establish the Hebrew Technical Institute in New York to provide vocational training to assist destitute Jewish immigrants to become self-supporting. In 1883, she founded the Society for the Improvement and Colonization of East European Jews. An important forerunner of the Zionist movement, Lazarus argued for the creation of a Jewish homeland thirteen years before Theodor Herzl began to use the term "Zionism." Contact with the Jewish emigrés from Russia led her to study Hebrew, Torah, Judaism, and Jewish history. Her Songs of a Semite (1882) is considered to be the earliest volume of Jewish-American poetry.
Avraham Leader (translation)
Avraham Leader is an internationally acclaimed teacher of various schools of Kabbalah and a founder of Matzref – The School for the Study of the Prophetic Consciousness Teachings of Rabbi Avraham Abulafia. Avraham has published new editions and translations of primary Kabbalistic texts. His students over the past thirty-five years include teachers, researchers, rabbis and beginners.
Rabbi Jacob Jehudah Leão (translation)
Jacob Judah Leaõ, or Leon, (Templo) was born 1603 in Buarcos, Portugal, and died in 1675 in Holland. He was a Dutch ḥakham, teacher, rabbi, translator of the Psalms, draughtsman, and expert on heraldry, of Spanish-Portuguese descent. He became famous for his models of the Tabernacle of Moses and the Temple of Solomon, which received Royal Patronage and approval and which were widely exhibited for many years in Europe and Britain in the 17th and 18th centuries.
Isaac Leeser (translation)
Isaac Leeser (December 12, 1806 – February 1, 1868) was an American, Ashkenazi Jewish lay minister of religion, author, translator, editor, and publisher; pioneer of the Jewish pulpit in the United States, and founder of the Jewish press of America. He produced the first Jewish translation of the Bible into English, as well as editions of the liturgy. He is considered one of the most important American Jewish personalities of nineteenth century America.
Stephen Leon
Rabbi Stephen A. Leon is rabbi emeritus of Congregation B'nai Zion of El Paso, Texas, having served from 1986 to the present. He was born in Brooklyn, New York abd graduated from Colombia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, receiving his ordination from the Academy for Jewish Religion. Rabbi Leon was the dean of the Academy for Jewish Religion from 1974 through 1986. He also was an instructor in Homiletics, Practical Rabbinics, and Cantillations. At the same time, Rabbi Leon served as the rabbi of Elmwood Park Jewish Center in New Jersey from 1971 through 1986. He served on the boards of the bioethics committee of Providence Hospital, El Paso Hospice, the Jewish Federation, and the Holocaust Museum. Rabbi Leon wrote numerous articles published in the Paterson News, El Paso Times, and The Jewish Voice of El Paso. He taught in the Religious Studies department of the University of Texas at El Paso. He has appeared on National Public Radio and has made numerous appearances on local television programs. Rabbi Leon has received awards from Israel Bonds, the Israel government Tourist Office, Hadassah, the Bergen County Board of Rabbis, United Synagogue Youth, and others. In 1999, Rabbi Leon received a grant from the El Paso Community Foundation and visited many places in Europe where Crypto-Jews have lived, including Belmont, Portugal where 300 Crypto-Jews formally returned to Judaism. Rabbi Leon is a trusted friend and teacher for the Anusim and has helped many individuals and families make their return to Judaism.
Noam Lerman is a rabbinical student at Hebrew College.
Eve Levavi Feinstein
Dr. Eve Levavi Feinstein holds a PhD in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University. She is the author of Sexual Pollution in the Hebrew Bible (Oxford University Press, 2014) as well as a variety of academic and popular articles. Dr. Feinstein serves as editorial consultant for, a program devoted to integrating academic biblical scholarship and Jewish learning, and technical writer for the Open Siddur Project, an open source project developing a digital archive of Jewish liturgical texts. Dr. Feinstein is also the founder of Nisaba Editing where she edits a variety of works for individuals and publishers.
Dan Levene
Dan Levene is a lecturer of Jewish history and culture in the Department of History at Southampton University
Sara Levi-Tanai
Sara Levi-Tanai (Hebrew: שרה לוי-תנאי‎‎; c. 1910 – 3 October 2005) was an Israeli choreographer and song writer. She was the founder and artistic director of the Inbal Dance Theater and recipient of the Israel Prize in dance in 1973.
Joel Levinson
Rabbi Dr. Joel Levenson serves at the Midway Jewish Center in Syosset, NY. He earned a doctorate in Pastoral Care & Counseling from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he also received a Masters Degree in Jewish Education. He earned a B.A. from Miami University in Oxford, OH with degrees in Psychology and Political science, with studies abroad at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Originally from Akron, OH, in 1991 he served as International President of United Synagogue (USY). He is an alumnus of the Jewish Leaders Program, an initiative of the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. He serves on the Board of the Long Island Board of Rabbis. In addition, he enjoys time each summer at Camp Ramah in the Berkshires, a sleepover camp, serving in many capacities that reflect his love of fun-based education and inspiration.
Avatar is a website for Jews in Boston where you can find an immediate connection to all the amazing Jewish things that are happening in Boston right now. Discover links to cultural events (music, dance, film, lectures, cooking classes), Jewish education (courses, lectures, trips), organizations (synagogues, community centers, professional networking) and lots more. Combined Jewish Philanthropies (CJP) created the world of so that, finally, there is an easy-to-find, vibrant online place to connect Jews, especially young Jews, with one another and the community at large. No more endless searching for ways to experience Jewish life. is a natural extension of CJP and was born out of the realization that a new way of thinking was needed to bring the community together.
Sholomo Levy
Rabbi Sholomo Levy is the spiritual leader of Beth Elohim Hebrew Congregation in Saint Albans, New York. He is also a Professor of History at Northampton Community College.
Abraham Lincoln
Abraham Lincoln (February 12, 1809 – April 15, 1865) was an American statesman and lawyer who served as the 16th president of the United States (1861–1865) and died in office upon his assassination. Lincoln led the nation through its greatest moral, constitutional, and political crisis in the American Civil War. He preserved the Union, abolished slavery, strengthened the federal government, and modernized the U.S. economy.
John Linder
John Linder is rabbi of Temple Solel in Paradise Valley, Arizona. Before coming to Temple Solel, Rabbi Linder served as a rabbi at Congregation B’nai Jehoshua Beth Elohim in Glenview, Illinois. Rabbi Linder received a Masters in Hebrew Letters and was ordained at the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati in 2003. A 1980 Cum Laude graduate of Amherst College, Rabbi Linder became a rabbi at age 46 after earlier careers as a community and labor organizer and as an executive in his family’s scrap-metal recycling business in Buffalo.
Nathan Lopes Cardozo
Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo is the founder and Dean of the David Cardozo Academy, Machon Aron and Betsy Spijer, in Jerusalem. He is the author of many books on Jewish Law and Philosophy and lectures in more than fifty Institutions of Jewish and secular learning around the world. He pens a weekly “Thoughts to Ponder” which is sent electronically. To receive: please sign up at
Michael Lotker
Rabbi Michael Lotker is Rabbi Emeritus at Temple Ner Ami in Camarillo, California, Rabbi of the Jewish Community of Ojai, and the Community Rabbi for the Jewish Federation of Ventura County. He is a second career rabbi having been ordained at age 55 from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) in 2003. Rabbi Lotker is also a physicist who spent his first career in alternative energy focusing on wind, solar and geothermal energy. An entrepreneur, he started a number of alternative energy firms including a wind power development company that installed and operated wind farms in Hawaii and California. Rabbi Lotker holds undergraduate and graduate degrees in Physics from Queens College in New York City and from the University of Illinois and is widely published in the alternative energy field. Prior to his ordination from HUC-JIR (the Reform movement's rabbinic seminary) in 2003, he received his Master of Hebrew Letters degree from this same institution. Rabbi Lotker is a member of the Central Conference of America Rabbis and the Board of Rabbis of Southern California.
Thomas A. Louchheim
Rabbi Thomas A. Louchheim, MAHL, L.D.Div. is the rabbi of Congregation Or Chadash since its beginning in 1995. He was ordained in 1987 and went on to serve as an assistant Rabbi for two years in Kansas City. He moved to Tucson with his wife, Marcia, in 1989, where he was rabbi at Temple Emanu-El for five years. He then served for two years as an executive at Handmaker Hospice. Since becoming the spiritual leader of Congregation Or Chadash, he has served as the Co-Chair of the annual Yom HaShoah service, has been president of the Tucson Board of Rabbis, and a board member for Habitat for Humanity, Tucson Jewish Family and Children's Services, and Handmaker. If you look up to the heavens, you might see the only space object named after a rabbi: asteroid 9584 Louchheim. Rabbi and Marcia Louchheim have been married for over 25 years and are the proud parents to Katie, Jacob, Daniel, and Benjamin.
Yitsḥak Luria Ashkenazi (1534 – July 25, 1572) (Hebrew: יִצְחָק בן שלמה לוּרְיָא אשכנזי, English: Isaac ben Solomon or Yitzhak ben Shlomo Lurya Ashkenazi), commonly known as "Ha'ARI" (meaning "The Lion"), "Ha'ARI Hakadosh" [the holy ARI] or "ARIZaL" [the ARI, Of Blessed Memory (Zikhrono Livrakha)], was a foremost rabbi and Jewish mystic in the community of Safed in the Galilee region of Ottoman Syria. He is considered the father of contemporary Kabbalah, his teachings being referred to as Lurianic Kabbalah. The works of his disciples compiled his oral teachings into writing and spread his fame which led to his veneration and the acceptance of his authority. Every custom of the Ari was scrutinized, and many were accepted, even against previous practice. Luria died at Safed on July 25, 1572 (5 Av 5332). He was buried in the Old Cemetery of Safed (from wikipedia)
Jacob Luski
Rabbi Jacob Luski is rabbi emeritus of Congregation B’nai Israel (CBI) of St. Petersburg, Florida. He was born in Havana, Cuba and immigrated with his family to the United States when he was 11. Rabbi Jacob Luski graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1971 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Industrial Management. From there, he enrolled in the Jewish Theological Seminary, New York, New York, where he received his Master of Arts in 1974, and then continued at JTS to graduate from Rabbinical School, At CBI, he established meaningful educational experiences and activities such as the JTS Tampa Bay Outreach Lecture Series, the first Mitzvah Day in Pinellas County, and Congregational trips to Israel. He also established the Hevra Kadisha Burial Society to ensure respectful and spiritual care for Jewish people after death. For 26 years, he has been the Jewish Chaplain at the VA Medical Center, Bay Pines, Florida. Both he and his wife Joanne, were instrumental in founding the Pinellas County Jewish Day School, welcoming the school on the CBI campus as it grew over it’s first 11 years. Rabbi Luski founded the Vaad Kashrut of Pinellas County, to ensure Kosher supervision for local hotels, restaurants, and caterers. After retiring from Congregation B’nai Israel in June of 2018 and earning the title of Rabbi Emeritus, he continues his support of Israel as the 17th Chairperson of the International Rabbinic Advisory Council of the State of Israel Bonds.
Bruce Lustig
Rabbi M. Bruce Lustig is Senior Rabbi at Washington Hebrew Congregation, where he has served for more than 25 years. Along with the daily responsibilities of leading a more than 2,800 family congregation, Rabbi Lustig has long held leadership roles in the local and national Jewish communities. He has served on the Washington, D.C. Mayor's Faith Advisory Board and as the National Liaison for National Day of Prayer. A committed social activist, Rabbi Lustig initiated Mitzvah Day at Washington Hebrew Congregation, which has become an international model for social justice programming. Rabbi Lustig is a proactive leader of Washington, D.C.'s interfaith community and organized the nation's first Abrahamic Summit, bringing together Christians, Jews, and Muslims for dialogue. Newsweek recognized him as one of "America's most influential rabbis." Ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Rabbi Lustig also holds a doctorate of divinity and a master's degree in Hebrew letters. He earned a bachelor's degree with honors from the University of Tennessee.
Hershel Lutch
Rabbi Hershel Lutch is an advocate for the American Jewish community and has served in leadership roles within several prominent Jewish organizations, including Aish HaTorah.
Acting on behalf of the American Jewish Historical Society, the Lyons Collection Committee, chaired by Leon Huhner, was responsible for curating and publishing a major collection of papers gathered by Jacques Judah Lyons (1813-1877). Besides Huhner, the committee consisted of Albert M. Friedenberg, Herber Friedenwald, N. Taylor Phillips, and David de Sola Pool. Translations published from this collection by the Society were not attributed further than this committee.

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