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Meet Our Team

Rabbi Adam Chalom 

Rabbi Adam Chalom (847-383-5184, is a dynamic and illuminating speaker, a clear and inspiring teacher, a warm and welcoming presence at Kol Hadash, and a leading voice in the movement of Humanistic Judaism. Rabbi Chalom has served as the rabbi of Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation since 2004.; 847-383-5184


Ilana Shaffer - Youth Education Director 

Ilana Shaffer holds a Bachelor of Business Administration and has held positions in marketing communications, event planning, and non-profit management. Ilana grew up in a traditional Jewish household in Oklahoma City, OK, and Atlanta, GA, but had an “aha!” moment when she learned about Humanistic Judaism. Ilana’s daughter completed Sunday School confirmation and her son is in the 6th/7th grade class this year. 773-209-8266

Ellen Apley - Choir Director 

Ellen Apley grew up as a Humanistic Jew and has been singing at Kol Hadash services since its founding, becoming music director in 2014. Ellen has a BA in Psychology and an MA in Learning Disabilities. She runs Kroft Educational Therapy and her two sons have both completed the Kol Hadash Youth Learning program from adult-tot through Confirmation and serving as classroom aides.

Jeremy Owens - Administrator

Jeremy Owens is from Arkansas and grew up Southern Baptist, and converted to Judaism in 2010. Jeremy has an MFA in acting and when he isn't keeping Kol Hadash organized, he runs the storytelling show known as You're Being Ridiculous and teaches and performs all over Chicago., 847-383-5184


Learn more about our Sunday School Staff.

Wed, June 12 2024 6 Sivan 5784