“It is not what one says, but rather what one does, that makes a difference in the world.”
–Pirke Avot, 1:17

You can help make Congregation Kol Ami an even better place to be.  Kol Ami has a number of very active committees that support the programs and mission of our congregation. Many of these committees need volunteers – individuals who can help in a variety of ways. This booklet contains a list of the committees, a brief description of their roles, the chairpersons, their contact information, and an explanation of the volunteers’ jobs. Please contact the committee chairs and let them know you can help.


Committee on Adult & Family Education “CAFÉ”
Co-Chairs:   Emanuel & Rina Donchin
Contact Info: or; (813) 760-7114
The Committee on Adult and Family Education “CAFÉ” coordinates and plans an extensive selection of exciting and innovative programs for all members of our congregation as well as for the entire community. CAFÉ enthusiastically encourages families – grandparents, parents, and children alike – to come together to study Torah and other topics in concert. In addition to classes, CAFÉ plans special events such as the annual Scholar-in-Residence Weekend. Volunteers are needed to help develop and plan new educational programs. The Committee is always looking for people with ideas for classes and programs. They only meet a few times a year and would love to welcome new faces to the committee.

College Outreach Committee
Chair: Toby Elozory
Contact Info: ; (813) 269-4429
The College Outreach Committee sends packages, emails and mailings to our undergraduate and graduate school students. Please keep the chair person updated with current addresses. Volunteers are needed twice a year (prior to Hanukkah/finals and Pesach) to assist in obtaining donations for the packages, organizing the packages, and preparing them for distribution.

Fellowship Committee
Chair: Carol Tarica
Contact Info:; (813) 412-1118
The Fellowship Committee arranges Synagogue Shabbat dinners, as well as the 2nd night Passover Seder meal, and Scholar-In-Residence weekend. Volunteers/Committee members are needed to assist in planning, publicity and creating table decorations. Volunteers/Committee members are also welcome to assist in setting tables and centerpieces for these events. This usually requires about an hour or two on Friday morning or day of the event.

Fundraising Committee
Chair: Yoav Rappaport
Contact info:; (813) 792-2786
The Fundraising committee organizes programs and activities that raise money for our congregation. Current and past fundraisers include Memorial Plaques, Tree of Life, Special Dinners and Events, The Annual Fundraising Gala/Event and Flamingo Flocking.

House Committee
Chair: Ken Novak
Please contact the office:; (813) 962-9338
The House committee is responsible for the repair and upkeep of our physical plant. Volunteers are needed to assist with special projects as the need arises.



Kesher Committee
Chair: Judith Sachs
Contact Info: (813) 961-6533 
What does Kesher mean?  “Kesher” translated from Hebrew means “connection”.  The purpose of the Kesher Committee is to find ways for our members to connect with each other and to Kol Ami. Members of the Kesher committee will be developing and implementing ideas designed to help our members make new friendships and enrich existing friendships to deepen our link to one another throughout the year.  Early ideas include producing a Kol Ami play, Schmear and Schmooze and ??   Be a part of this new adventure as we explore and plan meaningful and fun ways to further connect our Kol Ami family.

Kol Yeladim School Board
Co-Chairs: Amy Wasser and Francine Lazarus
Contact Info:; (813) 264-6266 or; (813) 908-3726
The Kol Yeladim School Board works with the Education Director to set policy for and oversee the running of the Kol Yeladim Religious School. Volunteers are needed to serve on the Kol Yeladim School Board to help set the policy and direction for the school. Volunteers are also needed to help with specific Kol Yeladim events (Purim Carnival, High Holiday Junior Congregation, Sukkot programs, Passover Candy Sale, Hanukkah celebrations).  Volunteers are needed to serve as class parents and make necessary phone calls to families and assist in classrooms when needed, as well as drive on field trips. Volunteers are needed to answer phones during religious school hours and help with assorted tasks during religious school hours.

Long Range Planning Committee
Chair: David Lazarus
Contact Info:; (813) 908-3726
The Long Range Planning Committee evaluates and makes recommendations to the Board of Trustees regarding the future needs of our congregational family on a wide variety of topics.  These topics include, but are not limited to, Personnel, Membership, Finance, Facilities, Ritual, Communication, Security, Leadership, Education, and Programming. Volunteers are needed to provide thoughts and expertise in the areas listed above to help shape and update the existing Long-Range Plan for the synagogue.”

Membership Committee
Chair: Jenn Flansburg
Contact Info:  (813) 857-7360
The Membership Committee’s mission is to bring in prospective members to the Kol Ami family, to retain current members, and to help new and not-so-new families feel welcome and engaged at Kol Ami. Volunteers are needed to serve on the Membership Committee to help in any aspect of recruitment, retention and overall welcoming of new and current members into the fold.  We are developing a buddy system between current members and new/prospective members and are always looking for folks who are willing to make an occasional phone call or agree to meet a new/prospective member at Shabbat services or such.  Committee meetings are kept to a minimum, when necessary include food, and mostly we use email to keep in touch.  Creative ideas and enthusiasm for growing and maintaining our membership are appreciated!

Or Chadash Committee

Chair: Brenden Crampton


Or Chadash is a program developed to facilitate interaction between young adult members and families of Kol Ami.  The group will plan events throughout the year to build a strong rapport among other members of similar age.  The group is made up of congregants in their 20’s and 30’s interested in having a good time and meeting new people.

We are openly looking for volunteers to host or plan events. Any member that is interested in learning more about the group or potentially joining and meeting other young adult members of the congregation are strongly suggested to reach out to Brenden at

Ritual Committee
Chair: Kalman Pila
Contact Info:; (813) 964-9000
The Ritual Committee organizes Shabbat services, Holiday services, and works with the Rabbi to make ritual decisions. The Ritual Committee needs volunteers to help prepare Torah and Service Assignment sheets by coordinating requests for individual honors, interfacing with the Rabbi, Hazzan, and the Office; securing Service leaders and Torah readers; extending honors on Shabbat and Yom Tov mornings;  assisting honorees in anticipation of their ascending the Bima; and participating in discussion and decisions affecting ritual issues.

Security Committee
Chair: Mike Korenvaes
Contact Info:, (813) 264-4407

The Security Committee helps to maintain and enhance safety and security of our Synagogue and School.

Various volunteers are needed to provide security coverage for Shabbat services, work on emergency operations plans, security related landscaping, lighting, physical building security and safety audits, High Holiday security coverage, and any other items that enhance the safety and security of Kol Ami. Meetings are held quarterly. Training is provided and women and men 18 years of age or more are welcome to join the team.

If you have an interest please feel free to contact Mike at above email or phone number or just see Mike and chat.

Social Committee
Chair: Dan “Coach” Ochman
Contact Info:; (813) 960-5971
The Social Committee plans programs designed to bring our congregational family together for enjoyable social functions. The Social Committee is looking for people willing to help in the organization, creation and participation of social events at Congregation Kol Ami. Only those who are willing to interact with their fellow congregants and are able to have a good time while doing so need apply. A sense of humor, desire to have fun and think outside the box attitude are preferred. The Social Committee at Kol Ami is an equal opportunity committee.


Social Action Committee

Chair: Sheri Peterson

Contact:, (813) 961-1865

Kol Ami’s Social Action Committee is looking for volunteers to help with Tikkun Olam, Repairing the World, by coordinating programs and projects that help others in our community and beyond.  This past year, we helped build a house, roofing and installing siding, for Habitat for Humanity during the Suzy Q Blitz. We collected donations in our third annual “Hanukkah Dreidel Drive” to benefit the Tampa Jewish Family Services.  In April, we celebrated our 2nd Annual Earth Day, recycling electronics, computers, printers, microwaves, and small appliances.  Goodwill Industries received donations that packed their truck. Confidential paper documents were shredded. Cell phones were collected for recycling, which were used to purchase phone cards for our American soldiers.  Shoes were collected to donate to the homeless and others were sent for rubber recycling.  We also collected  furniture, clothing, and small appliances for First Nesters who repurpose the items for those who have aged out of foster care and are now on their own, for use in their first apartment.  We are looking for new great ideas and fresh members and look forward to a productive and active year.

Tot Programming Committee
Chair: Co-chairs, Carolyn Fink and Lydia Abrams
Contact Info: Carolyn at (917) 771-1016 or Lydia at (813) 299-0086. The Email Address for both Carolyn & Lydia is

The Tot Programming Committee plans and runs Kabbalat Shabbat programs for families with toddlers –  ages 2 ½ -5 years old. Volunteers are needed to assist in planning and running other activities geared for this age group. In addition, if you are interested in organizing a playgroup for children ages birth through preschool please contact Allison.

Youth Committee
Chair: Bonnie Amsterdam-Miele
Contact Info: (813) 908-0926         
The Youth Committee works with the Youth Director, Karen Kosowski, who in turn works with the Boneem, Kadima and USY Advisors to develop and supervise the Youth programming for Kol Ami. Volunteers are needed to serve on the Youth Committee. The Youth Committee will help develop and assist in setting a policy for and oversee the running of the Youth Groups. Volunteers are also needed to act as chaperones and drivers at youth events, assist with food preparation and set up for fund raising events such as the annual Tikkun Olam dinner. The Youth Committee is responsible for setting polices and procedures to ensure the safety of the staff and youth groups. The Youth Committee is also responsible for making sure the Kol Ami Youth Department follows the guidelines and procedures set by the HaNegev Region of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.