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Rabbi Phyllis Sommer served Am Shalom as Associate Rabbi since 2003, and became Director of Congregational Learning in 2014. She is a native of Wisconsin and attended the University of Wisconsin in Madison. She was ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2003, and in addition to Am Shalom has served congregations in New Iberia, Louisiana and Billings, Montana.

Rabbi Phyllis is passionate about Jewish life and learning... and baking... and technology... and reading... and quilting... and posting regular (!) updates on Facebook... and pretty much everything! She spends part of every summer on faculty at Olin-Sang-Ruby Union Institute, where she also leads a well-attended spring quilting retreat for adults. She has blogged the Exodus at, and the ins-and-outs of balancing her life as Rabbi, wife, and mother of four as Ima On and Off the Bima: Real-Life Jewish Parenting and Living(

Most recently she chronicled the experiences of her second son, "Superman Sam" as he underwent treatment for leukemia ( As her twitter persona @imabima she has tweeted Torah, the Exodus, and other thoughts on her life and Jewish experience, and the Huffington Post named her one of their Influential Jewish Twitter users in 2011.

Rabbi Phyllis and her husband, Rabbi Michael Sommer, are the proud and loving (if sometimes harried) parents of four amazing children - David, Samuel Asher z"l, sister Yael, and baby Solly.

You can check out Rabbi Sommer's blogs at:

E-mail Rabbi Sommer or give her a call at 847.835.4800 ext. 253.

Sat, July 13 2024 7 Tammuz 5784