2020-2021 Board of Directors

as of 7/3/20


   Bill Wittmer, President

   Rodger Orman, Vice President

   Emily Orr, Treasurer

   Cindy Lavagetto, Secretary

   Rick Singer, Immediate Past President

Board Members "at large"

Teri Broleman

Megan Greenberg

Gunther Hsue

Ruth Perrine

Gat Slor

Georgie Spira

Tom Spira

Theda Wagner

Rabbi Andra Greenwald

We are a 100% volunteer run membership organization.

Our Board of Directors


The Board of Directors is elected annually each June at the annual member meeting, serving from July through June. The board, along with other volunteers drawn from our membership, organizes and hosts about 12 events each year.

   President’s Message


                                       "Let your house be wide open'   Pirkei Avot  1:5

                                               (Ethics of our fathers)


I have the privilege of currently serving as president of the Mother Lode Jewish Community's Board of Directors.  The Mother Lode Jewish Community is a “family” bound by traditions, culture and history, a “family” that comes together to share the joys of our Jewish heritage.  We are a small, but growing, community celebrating many holidays and events such as Passover, Chanukah, Simchat Torah and Shabbat, with services and dinners primarily at members' homes.  Our strength is our relationship with one another, exemplified by support, caring and concern for our members.  As a small group, we are participatory, with all events organized by our members willingly, joyfully and voluntarily.  Our events are thus intimate and personal, with these Jewish experiences a meaningful aspect of our lives.

                                                                                    ...Bill Wittmer

Rabbi Andra Greenwald


Rabbi Andra Greenwald is a licensed clinical social worker and ordained rabbi who feels "that adding the spiritual component to the physical, psychological and emotional dimensions of our lives would make touching those lives more complete."


Rabbi Greenwald, along with her husband, Loren Gonella joined the Mother Lode Jewish Community in 2014 and has been involved in leading the spirutual portions of our gatherings since 2013.  She also contributes a thoughtful and educational note to this website each month. Rabbi Andra (as she prefers to be called) also has been called upon by both our members and others in the 4 county region to officiate at life cycle events, with the goal of "making these moments meaningful" and notes, "I have made so many friends in the process."


Rabbi Andra also serves as the second vice president of Modesto's InterFaith Ministries and believes "we are blessed in the process of helping others".  She and her husband have three young adult daughters, the youngest of  whom is a cantorial student at the Jewish Theological Seminary.


Rabbi Andra’s rich knowledge of our Jewish traditions, coupled with her warmth, sincerity and caring manner enhance and facilitate our mission to provide opportunities and events that nurture an enduring Jewish identity and community in the Motherlode.


Contact Rabbi Andra