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236 Kane Street / Brooklyn, NY 11231 / 718 875-1550

Professional Staff

718-875-1550 x 2003

Rabbi

Michelle Dardashti

Prior to making her way to Cobble hill to join the team at Kane Street, Rabbi Michelle Dardashti spent nine years on College Hill in Providence, RI, where she served  as Associate University Chaplain for the Jewish Community at Brown University and Rabbi at Brown RISD Hillel. Rabbi Dardashti is the daughter of an American folk-singer and teacher and an Iranian-born cantor. She was raised on a brand of Judaism that is multicultural, meta-denominational, musical and global; she became a rabbi to share the gifts her parents’ eclectic Judaism afforded her: passion, hope, wonder, gratitude, empathy, responsibility and joy.

Her appointment at Kane Street has been covered by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency, The Brooklyn Eagle, and the Brown Daily Herald.

Rabbi Dardashti was ordained and received an MA in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS). During her time at JTS, she was trained in Congregation-Based Community Organizing through JOIN for Justice and in Clinical Pastoral Education at Bellevue Hospital; she was also an educator for Interfaith Community and Director of Youth and Family Education at Congregation Shaare Zedek. She came to Brown University in 2013 after serving as the Marshall T. Meyer Fellow at Congregation B’nai Jeshurun in Manhattan and Director of Community Engagement at Temple Beth El in Stamford, CT.

At Brown, Dardashti represented Judaism at university events and multi-faith programs and nurtured Jewish life at Hillel through teaching, leading (and supporting students in leading) services, creating alternative platforms for spiritual engagement, including monthly Women’s Rosh Hodesh (New Moon) gatherings, weekly “JIM Sits” (Jewishly Inspired Meditation—a workout for the soul) and Kivun, a musical and soulful prayer experience. She has also birthed a number of initiatives that critically explore allyship, antisemitism, activism, and the American Jewish relationship to Israel. Among these are the Narrow Bridge Project and Fellowship, recently covered by JTA. Dardashti received a Campus Life Staff Excellence Award from Brown University in 2020 and, during her tenure, Brown RISD Hillel was recognized by Hillel International with both the “Best Place to Work” and “Outstanding Campus” awards.

Rabbi Dardashti has spent time living and working in the Jewish community of Montevideo, Uruguay as well as four years in Jerusalem, where she was a student at Hebrew University, a Dorot Fellow, and a volunteer and staff member at a number of NGOs working in the realms of democracy, dialogue and cross-cultural exchange. Her writings have appeared in Sh’ma Journal, Jewschool and Siddur Lev Shalem (2016), and in three recent books, One Nation, Indivisible: Seeking Liberty and Justice from the Pulpit to the Streets (2019), Chaver Up: Allyship Through A Modern Jewish Lens (2021), and Jewish Theological Grace: Drashot In Honor of Chancellor Arnold M. Eisen (2022). She is also a 2021 Pedagogies of Wellbeing Research Fellow through M²: The Institute for Experiential Jewish Education. Rabbi Dardashti is married to Nathan Sher, who hails from Sydney, Australia. They will soon be moving to Carroll Gardens with their three children: Eden, Miya and Lavi, who are excited to be starting at the Hannah Senesh Day School.

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