Harvey Brotsky to retire from New Light

Harvey Brotsky to retire from New Light

Rabbi Harvey Brotsky can be added to the growing list of Pittsburgh area rabbis leaving their congregations in 2009.
Brotsky, who has been the spiritual leader at New Light Congregation for the past 12 years, announced to his congregation in January that he would be retiring at the end of the calendar year.
“My wife and I want to travel and things of that nature,” he said. “I still enjoy being a rabbi but it’s time to retire.”
Brotsky will continue to live in the Pittsburgh area after he retires.
Before becoming the spiritual leader, Brotsky was the cantor at New Light for 13 years. Even though he gets help during the High Holidays, he performs both roles a majority of the time.
New Light, which is celebrating the centennial of its chartering this year, is in the process of finding Brotsky’s successor.
“We are beginning a search for a new rabbi,” said Carl Solomon, New Light’s religious committee chairman. “It’s very early. We are just in the process of beginning our search.”
Solomon said it wouldn’t be easy to replace Brotsky.
“People knew him in the community,” Solomon said. “He was involved with the synagogue before taking over the pulpit. He will absolutely be missed. We don’t look forward to this process of his leaving.”
Brotsky said he hasn’t been asked to assist in the search process, but he did say he would stay on temporarily if he were needed.
While he is looking forward to retirement, he thoroughly enjoyed his 25 years at New Light.
“I’ve enjoyed it tremendously,” he said. “I think New Light is one of the best kept secrets in Squirrel Hill. We have a very friendly congregation. We welcome people and provide outreach to the community. I’ve very much enjoyed being the cantor and rabbi.”
In addition to Brotsky, Rabbis Stephen Steindel of Congregation Beth Shalom (Squirrel Hill), Danny Schiff of Temple B’nai Israel (White Oak) and the Agency for Jewish Learning, and Adriane Caplowe of Congregation B’nai Abraham (Butler) have announced they are leaving this year.
(Mike Zoller can be reached at mikez@thejewishchronicle.net.)

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