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Dear Members of the Etz Chayim  and Huntsville Community,

Thank you for welcoming us into your community! As many of you know, I have been serving for a little over a year as chaplain to a Marine Corps battalion that drills out of Bessemer, and so I have often passed by Huntsville, but am only getting to know it as more than a stop on the way south.

Rebecca and I are newcomers to the region, having moved to Nashville two years ago when I took up teaching in the Program in Jewish Studies (and in the Law School) at Vanderbilt. Although we were both born in California, we spent 15 years in the greater New York area before moving south. We have quickly put down ties in the region and are so glad to call it home. This year, Rebecca started working as Director of Talent Recruitment for an organization called the Tennessee Charter School Incubator, which will draw on a national talent pool to open some 10 charter schools throughout Tennessee (primarily in Memphis and Nashville) over the next five years. Rebecca and I have a five-year-old son, Gabi, who will be starting kindergarten at Nashville’s Akiva School in the fall; and a very enthusiastic ten-year-old Portuguese Water Dog named Caleb.

Although we will begin visiting Huntsville in the fall, please feel free to get in touch with me by phone or email at any time to introduce yourself, or simply to chat. Rebecca and I are looking forward to getting to know you and to becoming part of the Etz Chayim Community.

b’shalom,

Phil Lieberman

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