Rabbis and Staff

Rabbi Dan Ornstein

Dan Ornstein holds a B.A. in American Social History from Columbia University, a B.A. in Talmud and Rabbinics and an M.A. in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he also received his ordination.

Full Bio

Dan Ornstein has been rabbi of Congregation Ohav Shalom since 1994.

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Rabbi Rena Kieval

Rena Kieval holds a B.A. in English and Philosophy from Barnard College and a Masters of Social Work from Boston University. She was ordained in 2006 by the Academy for Jewish Religion in New York.

Full Bio

Rabbi Rena Kieval has served for many years as a spiritual, educational and pastoral leader at Congregation Ohav Shalom.

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Phil Merens

Executive Director

Sheryl Welton

Nursery School Director


Nancy Pandolfo

Operations and Events Coordinator

Patty Marcinkowski

Finance Coordinator


Our synagogue is committed to being a welcoming place where all people feel at home and share each other’s simchas and sadness.


We are known for being a warm, embracing, and friendly synagogue family.

Staff Directory

For information on how to contact our staff

Board of Trustees

Ohav Board Members serve for three year terms. Click above to see who is on our board and to contact our board president.

In the Rabbi’s Words

Sermons, thoughts, musings, bad jokes.

Purim 5777

Saturday evening, March 11th 6:45PM Evening service 7PM – Havdallah, Kid’s Costume parade & Megillah reading   Sunday, March 12th 10AM B’Yachad Megillah reading and carnival at Temple Israel All invited! Will the Jews’ troubles BALLOON out of control? With a...

Maccabi Games

Maccabi Games Come to the Capital District August 6-11
Help Our Community Host this Wonderful Event

Support and Recognition

Tribute donations support our congregation.