Temple Emanuel of Marlborough Welcomes New Rabbi and Cantor with Fenway Connections
While most of us would prefer to forget about Fenway Park this September, Temple Emanuel of Marlborough is happy to think about the storied ballpark. The temple, Marlborough’s only synagogue for the past 70 years, welcomed Rabbi Scott Sokol and Cantor Linda Sue Sohn this summer and recently discovered that both spiritual leaders have sung the national anthem at Fenway.
“In addition to clearly being outstanding singers, Rabbi Sokol and Cantor Sohn have a wide range of experience and skills, and longstanding professional affiliation between them,” said Alan Moskowitz, the temple’s president. “They bring a new level of possibility to Emanuel’s members, area Jews and the local community our temple serves.”
Rabbi Sokol completed his rabbinic ordination under the auspices of the Rabbinic Seminary International in New York City. He is a licensed psychologist (board-certified in pediatric neuropsychology) with a BA from Brandeis in psychology, and an MA and Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University. He received his MSM and cantorial investiture from The Jewish Theological Seminary of America, is a past recipient of a Young Psychologist Award from the American Psychological Association, a Fulbright Scholar, and a Wexner Fellow.
Rabbi Sokol was also the founder and former dean of the cantorial school at Hebrew College in Newton, and is currently professor of psychology, Jewish education and Jewish music, teaching liturgy, lifecycle officiating and prayer chant to rabbinical and cantorial students, as well as special education. He has previously served on the executive council of the Cantors Assembly of America.
Rabbi Sokol’s deep love of music led him to cofound Koleinu: The Jewish Community Chorus of Boston and Sheminiyah, a professional octet of cantors. He is the featured soloist on several recordings with the Zamir Chorale of Boston, and concertizes widely. He is also the past editor of the Journal of Synagogue Music.
Cantor Sohn is a talented educator with a specialty in making Jewish learning more accessible, particularly to b’nei-mitzvah students and special needs learners of all ages. She is a graduate of the Cantor-Educator Program at Hebrew College, where she was ordained as a cantor. While there, she earned a master's degree in Jewish education and a certificate in Jewish special education. In addition, Cantor Sohn has a BA in math and linguistics from Windham College in Putney, Vt., and spent many years in high-tech, which has made her quite adept at using technology to benefit her students.
Most recently, Cantor Sohn was on the planning committee for the 2012 GISHA Conference (Good Ideas Supporting Hebrew Access) at Hebrew College and the 2012 Women Cantors Network annual conference, held this year at Temple Beth Avodah in Newton, where she presented workshops on her original methods for teaching Hebrew readers.
Rabbi Sokol and Cantor Sohn will lead Shabbat services twice a month and are currently preparing for the upcoming Jewish High Holy Days of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Cantor Sohn will lead during the High Holy Days while Rabbi Sokol continues his part-time role as cantor at Temple Beth Sholom in Framingham.