K.A.M. leadership transition

Staff Writer

K.A.M. Isaiah Israel has been shuffling its leaders around in recent months.

Rabbi Frederick Reeves came to K.A.M. II in July from The Temple in Atlanta, Ga., where he served as Associate Rabbi for eight years. His move came on the heels of Robert Nevel assuming leadership of the board of directors at the synagogue.

Reeves said he believes that he and K.A.M.’s community will be a good match for each other.

“It’s good seeds and good soil,” Reeves said. “It’s a great match.”

Among his goals for the synagogue is to bring the same attention and enthusiasm that has been shown to the social justice program, to K.A.M.’s other offerings.

Reeves said he hopes to advance K.A.M.’s adult education series by bringing in more and varied speakers to its weekly lecture and to expand and enhance its children’s education.

He said he also plans to work towards building the social network of the members at K.A.M.

“[Houses of worship] whose members don’t have a tight social web will dwindle,” Reeves said. Studies have shown that if someone has at least seven friends at their place of worship they are likely to become a lifetime member.

One social outing the synagogue took was to go see a concert in Grant Park. The secular outing gave worshippers the opportunity to socialize outside the synagogue.
“Within five years there will be a lot of changes in place,” Reeves said. “But it will be the same synagogue.”

Former social justice committee chair Nevel hung up his farmers’ hat to become the synagogue’s president. He served as chair of the Social Justice Committee from 2009-2013 and during that time created the Food Justice Sustainability Program, where K.A.M. II and other Hyde Park houses of worship turned their lawns into food-producing gardens to fill soup kitchens’ pots.