Introducing David Herrera, CBS Youth Advisor

HerreraCBS is pleased to introduce our new Youth Advisor, David Herrera.

David recently wrote an open letter to our USY, Kadima, and Shabbat School families. We're sharing it here so that the CBS community at large can have an opportunity to learn a bit more about David.

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Dear CBS families of 5th - 12th grade students,

Hello! My name is David Herrera, and I’m happy to introduce myself to you as CBS’ new Youth Advisor.

In addition to my work with the CBS USY and Kadima community, I will also be the Teen Educator for CBS’ Shabbat School program. In each of these roles, I will work closely with Michael Lederman, CBS Director of Congregational Learning.

My primary focus will be supporting the growing SFUSY chapter for CBS teens in 8th - 12th grade and building up our Kadima chapter for youth in 5th - 7th grades. I will engage USY and Kadima participants in opportunities to grow as individuals, Jews, and global citizens. SFUSY has an established slate of fun and exciting events that we will continue, so be sure to keep an eye on your emails and phones for upcoming event announcements!

Many of the CBS teens and I already know each other from our mutual participation in USY regional events (as participants and staff, respectively). On the other hand, I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting most of you! With that in mind, I thought I’d provide you with a little background on me, just to get the ball rolling.

I was raised in a Conservative Jewish congregation in Modesto, CA. Once I became old enough, I began participating in USY chapter and regional events. During my first year of USY participation, when I was a freshman, I took on the role of Religion/Education Vice President for the Modesto USY Chapter. Gradually, I moved up the ranks from Rel/Ed VP to President of the Modesto chapter, serving in this capacity for three terms. During the last of these terms, I also served our region (the incredible New Frontier!) as Executive/Programming Vice President.

Since my graduation from USY, I’ve never been far from our region in spirit. During the 2013-2014 academic year, I headed to Israel on the Nativ College Leadership Program, an invaluable experience that I encourage all high school juniors and seniors to look into — it’s also a part of the continuing USY experience that the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism offers. Following Nativ, I studied for a year in England before moving back home this past summer and taking a position as Regional Staff for New Frontier. All the while, in both Israel and England, I remained connected with New Frontier, often getting calls and emails from USYers in all levels of regional leadership; I was always happy to offer my advice and support.

Outside of USY, I have experience working with Jewish youth and teens as a religious school teacher, b’nai mitzvah tutor, Ramah camp counselor, and chapter advisor. (Ramah chapter advisor or USY chapter advisor? If the latter, we should drop it as it really isn’t “outside of USY.”)

I’m very excited to begin my work with the CBS kids. If you have any questions or concerns as the year progresses, or if you just want to say ‘hi,' my contact information is below. I usually work from home, but I am available most hours of the day. Please be aware that I am shomer shabbat, meaning that I do not check my phone, email, etc. on Shabbat or any of the chaggim.

I can’t wait to meet you all and your kids!

David Herrera
SFUSY and Kadima Chapter Advisor
cbsyouth@bethsholomsf.org
209-573-0979

Sincerely,
David Herrera