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Rabbi Charlie Cytron-Walker

Charlie Cytron-Walker became the new rabbi at Temple Emanuel in Winston-Salem, NC on July 1, 2022. 

Rabbi Charlie arrives at Temple Emanuel with a history of working to bring a sense of spirituality, compassion, and learning into the lives of the community. He loves finding a connection with people of every age and strives to welcome all who enter the congregation, from interfaith families to LGBTQ+ individuals and families to those seeking to find a spiritual home in Judaism, along with all others. 
He previously served at Congregation Beth Israel (CBI) in Colleyville, TX since 2006. He was CBI’s first full-time rabbi.

He developed positive relationships with local school districts and  helped organized interfaith gatherings including numerous vigils, walks, and relationship building events. He is a past President of the Southwest Association of Reform Rabbis and served on the steering committee of Peace Together. In 2022, he was honored as a Hero Against Hate by the Texoma Anti-Defamation League and currently serves as a Special Advisor to the ADL.

On January 15, 2022 Rabbi Charlie and three CBI congregants were held hostage by a gunman in the CBI sanctuary.  After an 11-hour standoff, all the hostages were able to escape when Rabbi Charlie threw a chair at the gunman, distracting him long enough for everyone to get out of the building.  Since then, he has spoken out on the importance of security training for religious communities, and especially small congregations, as well as the need to build stronger bridges between faith communities, especially on a local level.  He has spoken at the White House, testified before U.S. Senate and House Committees, has been published in news sources including the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal, and has been interviewed and/or profiled for outlets from CNN to CBS.

Rabbi Charlie is originally from Lansing, Michigan and he graduated from the University of Michigan in 1998. After graduating, Rabbi Charlie worked at Focus: HOPE, a civil and human rights organization in Detroit, Michigan, and then became the assistant director of the Amherst Survival Center, which housed a food pantry, free store, and soup kitchen in North Amherst, Massachusetts.

Rabbi Charlie attended Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion at its Jerusalem and Cincinnati campuses, receiving his rabbinical ordination in 2006 and M.A. in Hebrew Letters in 2005. His rabbinical thesis was titled, “Jewish Service-Learning: Integrating Talmud Torah and Ma’asim Tovim.” As a student, he served congregations in Ishpeming, MI, Fort Walton Beach, FL, and Cincinnati, OH. During his time at HUC-JIR, he received multiple awards for his service to the community, along with an award for leadership from QESHET: A Network of LGBT Reform Rabbis.

Rabbi Charlie remains completely in love with Adena Cytron-Walker and simply adores his two daughters. 

(May 2023)

Mon, July 22 2024 16 Tammuz 5784