Who is on the Board of Directors?
President: Dan Lessner
Vice President: José Daniel Torres López Secretary: Raúl Eitan Martínez Aguilera
Treasurer: Eric Kaplan
Dan Lessner, José Daniel Torres López, Carole Stone
Fundraising: Raúl Eitan Martínez Aguilera
Programming: Zajar Campos
Ritual: Dan Lessner
Tzedakah: Helder Ayon Flores
Membership: José Daniel Torres López
Communications: Carole Stone
Building Committee: Carole Stone
Board Members Emeritus: Soli Cohen
Charles (Carlos) Soberman
in fond recognition for their service to the community
Dan Lessner: President
A retired Family Practice physician from Long Island, NY, Dan moved to San Miguel de Allende in 2005 and began a Saturday morning minyan group. A founding member of Shalom SMA, he has served on every Board since its inception, as well as leading weekly Conservative Shabbat and holiday services as Baal Tefilah/Shaliach Tzibbur of the minyan group and "spiritual leader" of CHESMA, AC in representing the community at interfaith meetings.
He helps prepare children (and adults) for their B'nei Mitzvah, and his relative fluency in Spanish has allowed him to teach classes in Judaism, Torah and basic Hebrew to help guide an increasing number of Mexican nationals who began to attend SSMA religious services and functions. This has led to the eventual conversion/return --some claim Sephardic Jewish ancestry-- of 44 individuals over the past 5 years. He continues to lead a Spanish-language Torah discussion group after Saturday morning services, as well as teach beginners' Hebrew and other classes.
You may contact Dan at: firstname.lastname@example.org
José Daniel Torres López: Vice President
Daniel Torres (born 1985) is originally from Moroleón, in the state of Guanajuato. He studied Clinical Psychology at the Universidad Autónoma de Querétaro. Currently, he is part of the psychology team of the Secretaría de Salud del Estado de Guanajuato, working in the municipality of San Miguel de Allende, where he resides and also has private clinical practice. Due to his academic interest, he has also dedicated himself to teaching at several universities. His interest in community processes has led him to collaborate in various civil society organizations in social development interventions with vulnerable groups using transformative education strategies. Daniel has been an active member of the JC3 since 2013, when he began to study Torah, Talmud, and Biblical Hebrew, among other subjects, under the tutelage and accompaniment of Dan Lessner. In Hanukkah of 2016 he obtained his official conversion after having studied with Rabbi Juan Mejía. He is assistant Ba'al Koreh (reading publicly from the Torah scrolls at services) and helps lead the Shabbat services of KSSMA.
Eric Kaplan: Treasurer
Eric Kaplan was born in Brooklyn in 1947. He grew up there and then in South Florida. He graduated with Honors from the University of Florida law School in E1971, where he was the most distinguished member of his graduating class, having been an Executive Editor of the Law Review and a member of the National Moot Court Team. After law school he was recruited to join the US Department of Justice Honor’s Program in Washington DC. He ultimately became a Senior Trial Attorney in the Special Trial Section and eventually was the first recipient of the Department’s highest honor, the Award of Merit. Eric concluded his legal career in Montana, where he was the senior partner of a small law firm he began. He has achieved the highest ethical and ability rating a lawyer in the U.S. can have, which establishes him as “preeminent” amongst his peers. Eric’s activities have not been limited to the law. He has had numerous photography showings, has produced an award-winning motion picture, has been an officer of many non-profit organizations, is an avid and accomplished tennis player, and has traveled extensively. He has been a full time resident of San Miguel for more than eight years but first visited here more than 40 years ago. He has one son who lives in Portland, OR.