Ordained in June 2017, Rabbi A. Nitzan Stein Kokin is the first graduate of the Zacharias Frankel College, one of the five rabbinical seminaries of the Conservative movement. Her love for congregational and spiritual engagement led her to pursue the rabbinate when this new program opened its doors in Berlin in 2013.
Born and raised in Germany, Rabbi Stein Kokin moved to Jerusalem in her early twenties and lived there for six years, immersing herself deeply in both Judaism and Israeli society. After receiving a Master’s degree in Jewish Studies from The Hebrew University in 2002, she joined her then-fiancé Daniel in Boston, MA and took graduate-level classes in Jewish Education at Hebrew College in Newton, MA. She lived in the U.S. with her husband and her two daughters until they moved to Berlin, Germany, in 2010 for a few years and has been based in Los Angeles since 2016. For over fifteen years, she has taught Judaism and Hebrew language in formal and informal settings alike in Israel, the United States, and Germany.
Rabbi Stein Kokin believes in the power of connection and engages actively in building community through strengthening personal relationships. In a congregation, she works to attract and deepen the engagement of new and longtime members following the approach and best practices of Relational Judaism (developed by Prof. Ron Wolfson and described in his work “Relational Judaism – Using the Power of Relationships to Transform the Jewish Community”, Jewish Lights Publishing, 2013).
In addition, as a rabbi who loves to sing and infuse prayer services with spirit and energy, she has encountered and actively participated in dynamic, innovative, and passionate prayer services across the Jewish world, and looks forward to collaborating with the congregation on ways to enliven the prayer experience.
Her academic interest in Gender Studies inspires her to explore biblical and rabbinic literature from a critical, egalitarian perspective. It sparked her research on the international, and especially German-Jewish, feminist movement in the early 20th century which culminated in her rabbinic thesis analyzing the halakhic thought of Regina Jonas, who in Berlin in 1935, became the first woman ever ordained as rabbi.
In her free time she likes to explore the outdoors by hiking or biking with family and friends, and engage in nature photography.