Rabbi Bruce Kadden
Bruce Kadden has served as rabbi of Temple Beth El since July, 2004. A native of Oakland, California, he received his B.A. in Religious Studies from Stanford University with honors in Humanities. He was ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio in 1981. After serving as Assistant Rabbi at Mount Zion Temple in St. Paul, Minnesota, he moved back to California where he served as rabbi of Temple Beth El in Salinas for 20 years. He taught interfaith Bible study classes for many years and served as Jewish Chaplain at the Correctional Training Facility in Soledad, California. Rabbi Kadden has been active in community activities, serving on the board of the Fair Housing Center of Washington and on the steering committees of the Puget Sound Interfaith Youth Camp and the Habitat for Humanity interfaith build. He is a member of Tacoma Sunrise Rotary and past president of the Pacific Association of Reform Rabbis.
Rabbi Kadden is an adjunct faculty member of Pacific Lutheran University where he has taught the Judaism class and the introductory class in Holocaust and Genocide Studies.
Bruce and his wife, Barbara, a nationally-known Jewish educator, have been married since 1978. They have written extensively in the area of Jewish education, including co-authoring three books: Teaching Mitzvot: Concepts, Values and Activities; Teaching Tefilah: Insights and Activities on Prayer; and Teaching Jewish Life Cycle: Traditions and Activities.
The Kaddens have two adult children: Alana Kadden Ballon (Jacob) and Micah, and two grandchildren, Matan and Liav.
Read Rabbi Kadden’s sermons on the Sermon Page.
Cantor Geoffrey Fine
Cantor Fine is honored to be joining the Temple Beth El community in July, 2017. He grew up in Rockville, Maryland and was always passionate about both Judaism and music. At his temple, he sang in the junior and then adult choir, and later sang duets with his beloved cantor during services. Throughout high school, he sang in numerous synagogue choirs, at the local Hebrew Home for the Aged, in musicals at the J.C.C. and in local dinner theaters, as well as in large and small professional choral ensembles.
Cantor Fine received a Bachelor of Music Degree in Vocal Performance from the Eastman School of Music with further studies at Tanglewood.
After college, he returned to the Washington D.C. area and sang professionally with Washington, Wolf Trap, and St. Louis Opera companies, and the Washington Jewish Players. He also worked at the National Portrait Gallery of the Smithsonian Institution where he wrote and performed in musical reviews based on the portraiture of Jewish composers and lyricists in the museum’s collection. A favorite memory included doing a radio jingle for the National Football League.
Moving to Boston, Cantor Fine continued to combine his musical and Jewish paths. Solo performances around Boston included singing with Boston Lyric Opera, the Jewish Zamir Chorale of Boston, Il Concerto di Salamone Rossi Hebreo (Renaissance Jewish music), and the Newton Choral Society (a concert of Jewish Music by composer Ben Steinberg). He also sang regularly at a synagogue in town.
After many years of singing professionally, he entered the Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion where he was ordained as a cantor and received his Masters of Sacred Music degree in 1998. He has served in two Massachusetts temples: Beth El Temple Center in Belmont, and Temple Beth David in Westwood. Cantor Fine is a proud member of the American Conference of Cantors (serving on the board for two years), The New England Board of Cantors, the Belmont Interfaith Clergy Group, and the co-ed music fraternity Mu Phi Epsilon.
Cantor Fine met Dr. Joel Hencken, his bashert (soulmate) in 1993. They had a Kiddushin ceremony in 1996 and in 2004, were one of the first same-sex couples to be married in Massachusetts. Joel is a psychologist in private practice and loves to spend time reading and singing with Geoff in and out of the temple. Geoff and Joel and their Bichon, Yum Yum, are happy to have made the transition from Boston to Tacoma, and are thrilled to be at Temple Beth El and living in the Pacific Northwest.
Andrea (Andy) Mauer joined the Temple Beth El staff in September, 2000. She was born and raised in the Puyallup/Sumner area. She is married and has resided in Fircrest for the past 30 years. Her daughter is a middle school teacher and is currently living in Maryland, with her husband, who is in the Air Force, and their first and only granddaughter. Her son works for Senator Patty Murray as a veterans’ affairs constituent services representative with wedding plans for the summer of 2018. Andrea and her family take pleasure in family get-togethers and yearly, extended-family campouts. Andrea enjoys being part the TBE community.
Rebecca Kendziora has been the administrative assistant at Temple Beth El since 2003. Born and raised in the Pacific Northwest, Rebecca has been in office administration for nearly 20 years after making the transition from retail management and human resources and enjoys it very much. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her family and friends and has a passion for Cirque du Soleil and the performing arts. Rebecca has enjoyed being a part of the Temple Beth El family and its extended community.
Religious Education Director
Nina King-Madlem is currently serving as the Religious Education Director and has been a member and teacher in the religious school since 2002. She was born in Portland, Or., moved to Toronto, Canada as a teenager, and returned to the pacific northwest in 1996. Nina received undergraduate degrees in sociology from York University and Antioch University, a Master’s Degree in Education-Counseling from UPS in 2006, a Masters of Jewish Studies from Gratz College in 2014, and became a Board Certified chaplain in 2015. Nina was a school counsellor in Tacoma Public Schools and later a chaplain for Multicare in their hospital system and for CHI/Franciscan as a hospice chaplain.
Nina and her husband, Matthew, have been friends since 1977 (married since 1997) and have four children. They enjoy back packing, travel and have a deep appreciation for music and visual arts.
Religious Education Administrative Assistant
Shelley is the religious education administrative assistant and works three days per week. She lives in Gig Harbor with her dog, Coco and cat, Tuffy. Her daughter and son-in-law also live in Gig Harbor, along with their two children. Shelley attends all of her grandchildren’s athletic activities. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with family, attending exercise class, reading and trying new recipes, and working all kinds of puzzles.