Honorees
 
 
 
 
Rabbi Lester Bronstein  
 
Since arriving at Bet Am Shalom in 1989 with his wife, Cantor Benjie Ellen Schiller, Rabbi Les Bronstein has been a catalyst for our spiritual development and congregational growth. His searching intellect never overwhelms his ability “to connect,’’ creating an intellectual and haimishe backdrop for our congregational life. He takes personal joy in our s'machot, provides heartfelt warmth during moments of need
and encourages our questions and participation.
 
In addition to serving our diverse community, Rabbi Bronstein is a leader in local and national Jewish and civic circles. His leadership was most recently recognized in his election as President
of the New York Board of Rabbis in May, 2018.
 
Rabbi Bronstein and his wife and co-honoree Benjie Ellen Schiller are members of Beged Kefet, a performance group dedicated to new Jewish spiritual compositions. Rabbi Bronstein is also a founding member of the Coalition for the Advancement of Jewish Education (CAJE), an officer of the White Plains Religious Leaders Association, past president of the Westchester Board of Rabbis and past chair of the Westchester UJA Rabbinic Roundtable. He serves on the boards of UJA Federation of New York, the philanthropic group Myriam’s Dream and the Westchester Interfaith Clergy Network.
 
A native of Texas, Rabbi Bronstein has a Bachelor's degree from Yale University and a Master's in Education from Boston University. He was ordained at Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion in New York, and before joining Bet Am Shalom served as Assistant Rabbi of Temple Shaaray Tefila in Manhattan.
 
 
Cantor Benjie Ellen Schiller  
 
Cantor, composer, and community touchstone Benjie Ellen Schiller has for 30 years brought her trademark, captivating musical spirituality to the bimah. In addition to her Shabbat and holiday duties, Cantor Schiller organizes and leads Shirat Ha’am, Bet Am Shalom’s congregational choral group – in benefit concerts
and other programs.
 
A nationally renowned composer, Cantor Schiller’s works include "Life-Song Cycle," a series of pieces for Jewish life passage ceremonies; "Halleluhu," a multi-rhythmic setting of Psalm 150; and various commissioned works for synagogues, choirs, and interfaith liturgical groups. She has even released
a solo recording of her compositions, titled World Fulfilled.
 
As a classical soloist, Cantor Schiller has appeared with the John Oliver, Boston Zamir and Rottenberg Chorales, along with Sine Nomine in New York. She also shares her musical approaches to prayer
and celebration as a national fellow of the Synagogue 2000 project.
 
Cantor Schiller’s arrangements and compositions are featured on the two recordings made by the Beged Kefet philanthropic Jewish music ensemble. She has recorded music for Kol Haneshamah, the Reconstructionist movement’s home prayer book, and is featured on Yamim Noraim, a CD recording
of High Holy Day music.
 
In addition to her duties at Bet Am Shalom, Cantor Schiller is a Professor of Cantorial Arts at Hebrew Union College -Jewish Institute of Religion. She received her bachelor's degree in composition
from Boston University.
 
 
 
 
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