Sign In Forgot Password

Rabbis, Staff and Board

Rabbi Dr. Analia Bortz

Rabbi Dr. Analia Bortz, MD, Bioethicist, was ordained in 1994 at the Seminario Rabínico Latinoamericano, Marshall T. Meyer as the first woman Rabbi in Latin America. Dr. Analia Bortz is a medical doctor with postdoctoral studies in Bioethics.

Rabbi Analia is the founder of “Hope for Seeds,” a group for women struggling with sterility and infertility. Rabbi Analia is a Senior Rabbinic Fellow of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, Israel. Rabbi Analia was awarded the Community Hero in 2011 and was one of the Women of Achievement of Georgia’s YWCA in 2012.

Rabbi Analia serves as a board member of FIDF, JNF, ICM. Inspired by the words of Abraham Joshua Heschel, Rabbi Analia describes her vocations as follows: “Medicine is Religion in Acts and Religion is Medicine in Prayers”. 

Rabbi Analia along with her husband, Rabbi Mario Karpuj, are the co-founder rabbis of Congregation Or Hadash. They are also the proud parents of Tamar and Adina.

Rabbi Mario Karpuj

Rabbi Mario was born in Argentina, where he received his ordination from the Seminario Rabínico Latinoamericano, Marshall T. Meyer in 1994. He became the spiritual leader of his first congregation in 1986, at the age of 19. In the last 30, years he has served three congregations in Argentina and served as Rabbi-in-Residence for the Jewish community of Cuba. During his years at rabbinical school, he also became a chaplain for one of Argentina’s largest prisons.

In 1995, he become the first Rabbi of the Congregación Israelita de Valparaíso in Viña del Mar, Chile in 35 years. In the year 2000, he moved with his family to Atlanta and joined Ahavath Achim Synagogue’s clergy. In 2003, Rabbi Karpuj and his wife, Rabbi Analia Bortz, become the founding rabbis of Congregation Or Hadash in Sandy Springs, Georgia, the most meaningful and exciting professional endeavor he has been involved with.

He serves as a board member of the Atlanta Chapter of the American Jewish Committee and has served as the Rabbi-in-Residence of the AJC International Meeting for six years. Rabbi Karpuj has been involved for many years in interfaith dialogue and advocacy. He is a board member of FAMA, the Faith Alliance of Metro Atlanta, and he is also an active member of the Sandy Springs Interfaith Clergy.

Rabbi Mario feels very fortunate to be part of the Interfaith Community Initiatives World Pilgrims program, an Atlanta based project in which Jews, Christians and Muslims participate in interfaith pilgrimages. He participated in a number of pilgrimages to Jerusalem in 2005 and to Toronto and Niagara Falls in 2013. Rabbi was the Jewish leader on pilgrimages to Turkey in 2006 and 2007.

Gail Duner, President

Gail Duner and her family have been members of Congregation Or Hadash for 17 years, joining after they moved to Atlanta from Southern California in 2003. She has been actively involved in the synagogue, serving on committees, on the Executive Board, co-chairing the Strength to Strength Campaign to help make the synagogue debt-free, and most recently as a member of the rabbi search committee. Her husband Bruce is also a past executive board member (and High Holiday shofar blower) and her children both had their B’nai Mitzvahs at Or Hadash.

Gail and her family have developed strong roots in the Atlanta Jewish community. Their children attended The Epstein School and The Weber School and spent summers at Camp Ramah Darom. Gail is a trustee of the Jewish Women’s Fund of Atlanta, which is dedicated to effecting social change for Jewish women and girls. She is also on the board of Am Yisrael Chai, a Holocaust education and awareness organization that oversees The Daffodil Project.

Gail spent many years in marketing and strategy roles at a Fortune 100 global pharmaceutical company and has been a consultant in the healthcare arena. She spent several months working in Buenos Aires and is proficient in Spanish. She traded in her cache of frequent flier miles (one of the reasons Bruce married her) to focus on family and philanthropy/volunteering. Gail holds a BA in International Relations from Stanford University and an MBA from Harvard University.

Gail and Bruce have two children, Alex, 24, who is a software engineer for Apple in NYC and Emily, 22, who is graduating from Northwestern University in June. Gail is an avid tennis player, loves to hike, travel, read, cook and drink good wine (the last three she can still do in our current environment).

Scott Allen, Executive Director

Scott joined the Or Hadash family in December of 2017. He brings a wealth of experience to his role, having served as Executive Director of congregations in Rye, NY-Pittsburgh, PA-and Brookline, MA. Scott is passionate about his work and can often be found attending services on Shabbat and holidays. He loves the member relationship management part of his job, as well as both the financial and general administrative side. His previous career in the financial services industry has given him a good foundation for his role as Or Hadash's Chief Operating Officer. Scott grew up in Atlanta and was active in USY and Camp Ramah. He has traveled numerous times to Israel. Scott is married to Rae-ann and they are the proud parents of five grown sons and grandparents of five grandchildren. He is a graduate of the University of Virginia.

Scott enjoys travel, photography, science fiction, keeping up to date with news, cooking with Rae-ann, and spending time with family and friends.

Rachel Herman, Director of Education and Youth Activities

Rachel is a graduate of The Jewish Theological Seminary, where she received her M.A. in experiential Jewish Education. Her passion for Jewish education stems from her summers spent at Jewish summer camp. Rachel was raised in the south, but relocated to Atlanta from New York City to join the Or Hadash community. She  previously lived in Israel after receiving her B.A. from Indiana University.

She is an avid ice hockey fan and enjoys yoga.

Denise Fields Lee
Administrative Coordinator

Denise is a native Washingtonian (DC). She's lived and worked in amazing places: Lagos, Nigeria; San Salvador, El Salvador; Honolulu, HI; Norristown, PA; El Toro, California (Orange County); and New Orleans, Louisiana. Denise brings to us classical and practical business experience in office communications and support. Before joining the team of Or Hadash in 2014, Denise was employed at Ahavath Achim Synagogue for twelve years. 

Outside of the office, Denise enjoys the company of her grandchildren, religious research and study, and any activity that gets her out of the house and on the road to explore our world.

Angela Habeeb-Ajao

Or Hadash Board






Executive Committee
President - Gail Duner
Vice President - Heather Blank
Vice President - Geoffrey Deckelbaum
Vice President - Jodi Ginsburg
Vice President - Steve Wertheim
Treasurer - Fred Wachter
Secretary - Karin Golan
Assistant Secretary - Scott Rosenbaum
Immediate Past President - Ben Nadler

Board Members
Adina Bradshaw
Aaron Diamant
Beth Tieman Feldstein
Sally Ginburg
Ronit Hermoni
Monica Hochstein
Jennifer Parker
Barry Simon
Jay Strongwater
Renee Videlefsky

Sun, May 31 2020 8 Sivan 5780