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Note: The opinions expressed here are solely those of each individual blogger and do not necessarily represent the views of TRT.

2016 (5777) President's Speeches

Written by Bob Dollinger October 2016

Here are the speeches given by TRT President, Bob Dollinger in October 2016.  

2015 (5776) President's Speeches

Written by Bob Dollinger September 2015

Several people have asked to hear recordings of the speeches given by TRT President, Bob Dollinger.  These recordings are available here

Thanks - and Remembering What Went Well

July 2013

At his final Board meeting as the President of TRT, Brion Feinberg gave a short  speech.  This blog attempts to capture what he said (or intended to say).


 In these final weeks, I have received lots of wonderful, positive feedback. Thank you all for all the kind words and encouragement - they are truly appreciated.

I think that a lot has gone well over these past 3 years. But to really get the most benefit from everything I've learned, and to reinforce some of the ideas that I think worked well, I realized that I needed to capture these thoughts for others to use or at least consider.

Modeh Ani

August 2012

[I participated in the TRT Yishar Koach program this year. This program 
allows congregants to celebrate the anniversary of their Bar/Bat Mitzvah,
and use the opportunity to re-examine how their Jewish identity has changed since then. The following words are from the introduction I gave before 
leading the congregation in reciting the Modeh Ani prayer.]

As you may have noticed, our next prayer is from the morning service. Let
 me tell you why I asked if I could lead this prayer tonight.

Several years ago, I started attending our informal Saturday morning minyan
services. I can't even recall how I first discovered this wonderful jewel
 of a service. They are short and always involve an interesting discussion
 of the weekly Torah portion. But more importantly, they are informal. I 
found that I just loved something about coming to temple and praying in 
jeans and sneakers. Praying didn't have to be something I had to dress up
 for. Or felt obligated to do. Coming to minyan service is something that 
I want to do, for me. Not for any obligation I feel. But because I want 
to be there.

Yishar Koach

August 2012

[I participated in the TRT Yishar Koach program this year. This program allows congregants to celebrate the anniversary of their Bar/Bat Mitzvah, and use the opportunity to re-examine how their Jewish identity has changed since then. The following words are from min-sermon I delivered during the service.]


I remember, like it was yesterday, being a teenager and, with total certainty, knowing that I knew it all. And I remember my parents telling me “you have so much more to learn.” But of course, given that I already thought I knew everything, I figured that they were wrong about this also. Now, on my anniversary of being 13 again, I have to admit – I was wrong. If I knew everything then, how could I possibly explain everything that I have learned since then?


Temple Marketing Advice

June 2011

In my “real” life, I provide marketing and strategic planning for technology companies.  Here are some ideas and suggestions, based on my professional experience, that I believe may also improve our ability to market our temples.


You have to sell what the customer wants to buy

Many families thinking about joining a congregation are not focused on lifelong Jewish education or finding a comfortable spiritual home.  They are focused on car pools, how often they must schlep their children to religious school, and the near term costs of joining a synagogue.  Stage 1 of your marketing efforts has to be: Get them to know you exist.  During this stage, you need to sell to people on their ground, and not ask them to move to your home turf.  After you get them in the door can you start to sell the other values that you bring.  But your initial focus has to appeal to people based on what they are looking to buy - not based on what you are trying to sell.


Scheidt Seminar Was Fantastic

April 2011

The Scheidt Seminar was fantastic. The information was extremely helpful. But it was so much more than that. There was something special and magical, far beyond just the mechanics of learning together how to better lead a synagogue. We spent the full day on Friday working together with other presidents running similar sized temples. By late afternoon, we were friends, and we enjoyed sharing our stories and ideas with each other.

And then it was Shabbat ...