Reform Cantors Conference Installs First Openly Gay President

The American Conference of Cantors (ACC) has installed Cantor Mark C. Goldman, an openly gay cantor, as its next president.  Cantor Goldman, who serves Temple Kol Ami Emanu-El in Plantation, FL, began his term as of his installation last week at the ACC’s annual convention in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

In an ACC press release, Cantor Goldman said, “I’m proud to represent cantorial clergy of Reform Judaism. More than any other movement, the URJ has welcomed people of all faiths, lifestyles, ethnicities and beliefs. Our diversity, inclusiveness, and willingness to always think forward and be truly progressive is key to our strength and integrity,”

Cantor Goldman said in his July 4 installation remarks,

…I skate to where the puck is going not where it’s been…My goal is for the American Conference of Cantors to double our sphere of influence by the second half of this decade so that we can positively impact the lives of those who choose to be part of our progressive community.

In a time where there are a plethora of musicians who touch the lives of those they serve through Jewish music, we have a singular opportunity to unite and lead as clergy committed to the highest ideals of Judaism and Jewish music. In the backdrop of a movement which is experiencing challenges in the areas of affiliation, support, and engagement, we have an exciting and extraordinary opportunity to be on the cutting edge of progressive Jewish life. The 21st century cantor…clergy, musician, teacher, program coordinator, artist, counselor, communal figurehead, ambassador, and the list goes on and on, multi faceted and talented, involved in every aspect of modern communal life. Indeed, the center of our Jewish community.

This is our opportunity to jump ahead of the wave. This is our opportunity to unite and lead as Jewish progressive clergy dedicated to contemporary Judaism, Jewish music, and Jewish life.

A native of London, England, Cantor Goldman is a descendant of generations of cantors. He pursued cantorial studies as well as a B.A. degree in Judaic Studies at the London School of Jewish Studies (formally “Jews College”). He is the youngest recipient of certification by the Chief Rabbi of The United Kingdom. Prior to moving to South Florida, where he has been serving Kol Ami Emanu-El since 1995, Goldman served Temple Beth El of Rochester, NY. Learn more about him on the ACC’s website.

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From the URJ

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