Our June 25th Gala Garden Party honors Renata and Jethro Miller, both active and supportive members of our congregation. And we all know their children—Sophie, 17, andNoah, 13, who are both at The Ethical Culture Fieldston School. Renata and Jethro joined our congregation when they were expecting Sophie.“We wanted to belong to a synagogue in time for her baby naming.” Renata researched nearby Reform congregations on the URJ website.
They found a hearty welcome at Sinai Free Synagogue with Rabbi Mo and our warm community. Renata became active almost right away starting a play group for toddlers and, with Cantor Liz, inaugurated the intergenerational choir. “The parents had to sing with the children because the little children couldn’t read yet.”
Renata was the first of the Millers to join the Board. She is most proud of serving on the search committee that found Cantor Amy. For the last two years, Renata has gifted us with a Zoom Sacred Gathering poetry class, leading discussions of works by authors from Shakespeare to Sylvia Plath to Tyehimba Jess.
Jethro joined the Board and his fundraising know-how was recognized and is appreciated. Jethro served as SFS Co-President from December 2016 to December 2020. He currently is our SFS Board Chair. “I’m proud that the synagogue is now at a moment of solid financial footing,” he said, “but we still have to take care of a 25-year-old building.”
Jethro grew up in a Reform Jewish home and became a Bar Mitzvah. Renata converted to Judaism after Noah was born. Patricia Kobetts, Renata’s mother, studied Judaism, joined SFS, and converted in 2020.
Renata and Jethro met at Princeton, where both were debaters and graduated magna cum laude. Renata is Dean (Interim), Division of Humanities and the Arts at The City College of New York and Professor, English Department. Jethro is Chief Development Officer for Planned Parenthood Federation of America, overseeing its philanthropic fundraising programs.
We’re looking so forward to celebrating on June 25th. For more information see our calendar SFS Gala 2022 – Sinai Free Synagogue