Our People

Rabbi Alex Chapper

Senior Rabbi
Rabbi Alex Chapper

Rabbi Alex Chapper was appointed as Rabbi of Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue (BES) in April 2019, following two years as Community Rabbi.

He has more than 20 years’ experience in the rabbinate, and prior to joining BES was the rabbi of Ilford Federation Synagogue, Reading Hebrew Congregation and Hammersmith Synagogue.

He grew up in North West London and spent seven years at the London School of Jewish Studies (LSJS) where he attained a London University degree in Jewish Studies, as well as Semicha. He pursued further study at yeshivot Mir and Darchei Noam in Israel.

A pioneer in informal Jewish education, Rabbi Chapper has devised many innovative adult education programmes including the highly successful SpeedLearning, Diploma in Judaism and J Knowledge courses. He regularly visits Jewish schools encouraging young people to ask questions about Judaism.

Chaplain to the Mayor of Redbridge in 2014/15, Rabbi Chapper is actively involved in interfaith work. In 2009 he was appointed as a Justice of the Peace sitting at Redbridge Magistrate Court, the same year in which he graduated as an Ashdown Fellow.

Rabbi Chapper is a regular contributor to Jewish media and is a sought after public speaker. He is married to Eva and they have five sons.

Rabbi Avinoam Czitron

Interim Rabbi
Rabbi Avinoam Czitron

Rabbi Avinoam Czitron joined BES in January 2023, as Interim Rabbi of the Yavneh community. He has rabbinical and educational work-experience. He holds a Law Degree, and briefly practiced Law in Israel for seven months, during the two years a Rabbi in Netanya. His next appointment was as Senior Rabbi at Childwall Hebrew Congregation in Liverpool . Additionally, Rabbi Czitron obtained a M.A. in Jewish Studies from Middlesex University, London (LSJS).

Rabbi Czitron’s deep commitment to Torah is evident in his 11 years of dedicated Yeshiva studies and subsequent 7-year tenure in Kollel in Jerusalem. During this period, he received his Semicha from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel as well as from Rabbi Baruch Mordechai Ezrachi and Rabbi Zalman Nechemia Goldberg.

Born in Netanya, Rabbi Czitron’s passion for Israel and Modern History led him to gaining extensive experience as a tour guide accompanying educational tours of diverse groups in both Israel and in Poland. His commitment to education continued in his previous role as an educator at the World Centre for Jewish Education. In the academic year 2022-2023, Rabbi Czitron served as the Head of the ‘Beit Midrash Track’ at Yavneh College.

Rabbi Czitron’s was a Jewish chaplain at Ma’asiyahu prison. Beyond his Rabbinic and academic roles, Rabbi Czitron is deeply involved in community and interfaith work. He dedicates himself to promoting unity, dialogue, and support within and beyond the Jewish community. Born in 1986, Rabbi Czitron is married to Haddas and they are parents to two daughters.

His background and life experiences embody a harmonious blend of Israeli and European heritage.

Rabbi Alan Plancey MBE

Emeritus Rabbi
Rabbi Alan Plancey MBE

Rabbi Alan Plancey MBE is the Emeritus Rabbi of BES. Rabbi Plancey and his wife Rebbetzen Miriam led the community for more than 30 years, overseeing the huge growth in the number of members over three decades, before retiring as Minister of BES in 2007.

Rabbi Plancey continues to play an active role in the BES community, as well as representing Borehamwood South on Hertfordshire County Council and being on Norwood’s Advisory Council.

Rabbi Yaacov Finn

Community Rabbi
Rabbi Yaacov Finn

Rabbi Yaacov Finn was born in Israel but is very much a ‘homegrown’ Rabbi, having lived in Borehamwood since the age of six. He attended Sinai School and Immanuel College before going to learn in Netiv Aryeh in the Old City of Jerusalem. He studied Psychology at UCL, after which he went on to gain Semicha from the Montefiore College and a MSc in Health Psychology from UCL and Kings College London – he even has an article published in a psychology journal .

Whilst training as a Rabbi he became the Interim Minister of Shenley, and upon becoming a qualified Rabbi, BES was delighted when he returned home to join the Rabbinic team in October 2013. With the exception of two short breaks to support Radlett US and Northwood US, Rabbi Finn has supported BES services across both Croxdale Road and Yavneh sites on Shabbat and Yom Tov, initiating new ideas and programmes.

Rabbi Finn is employed part time by BES.

Rebbetzin Eva Chapper

Senior Rebbetzin
Rebbetzin Eva Chapper

Rebbetzin Eva Chapper has over 20 years’ experience working in the Jewish community, previously serving as Rebbetzin in Hammersmith, Reading and Ilford. Eva grew up in Edgware and attended Haberdashers’ Aske’s School for Girls and completed 3 years in Seminary in Israel. She has worked in many varied industries including catering, Marks & Spencer and for Schools’ J-Link.

Eva is an accomplished Bat Mitzvah teacher, she also learns one-to-one with brides in preparation for their wedding and has counselled many women.

Warm and approachable, she has spearheaded many initiatives for women to feel more empowered and connected to their Judaism.

Eva is primarily focussed on developing and delivering programmes to enhance the social and educational provision for women in the community.

In addition to her communal work, she is a mother of 5 sons. Her eldest son is based in Jerusalem and is in a combat unit in the IDF. Eva is well known for her love of Harry Potter and connecting the story to themes in the Torah.

Rebbetzin Haddas Czitron

Interim Rebbetzin
Rebbetzin Haddas Czitron

Rebbetzin Haddas Czitron grew up in Israel. After completing a comprehensive two-year Rebbetzin training programme with Amiel, they served as a Rabbinic couple in Liverpool for three years.

During the challenging times of the Covid, Haddas took the initiative to lead a welfare programme for community members. This programme included the provision of hospitality, food delivery to the vulnerable, outdoor children’s services, and various engaging activities for the youth.

Haddas collaborates closely with many members of the BES Israeli community and regularly organises support groups featuring guest speakers. Her academic background includes graduating from Machon Lev, and she brings a unique perspective to her community work, having previously worked in IT for Israeli Hi-Tech companies.

Known for her warm and welcoming approach, Haddas is always delighted to host and engage in tea meetings with community members, fostering an environment of connection and support.

Honorary Officers & Synagogue Council

Honorary Officers

Chair: Josh Moont
Deputy Chair: Simon Berman

Vice Chair Croxdale: Lara Lipsey  |  Vice Chair Yavneh: Dan Miller
Warden Croxdale: Justin Kett  |  Warden Yavneh: Leslie Allweis

Vice Chair Women: Caroline Levison
Vice Chair BES Wide: Lisbeth Gilmore

Financial Representative

Avner Radomsky

Synagogue Council

Shoshana Bacall
Robert Blech
Dan Bradley
Katherine Brownstein
Leora Cohen
Daniel Hirschfield
Rebecca Livingstone
Daniel Morris
Stephen Newton
Jeremy Roskin

Board of Deputies Representatives

Jonathan Benjamin
Daniel Hirschfield
Danielle Shane

Professional Staff & Mikveh Attendants

Shul Office

Community Administrator: Debbie Levine
Marketing & Events Administrator: Avigail Goodman
Rabbinic Executive Assistant: Angela Rosen

Care Team

Community Support Coordinator: Karen Moss
Community Care Support Administrative Assistant: Marcelle Schechter

Croxdale Site Team

Site Manager: Dave Coulman
Celia Bray
Josh O’Sullivan
Andrew Ray
Mark Tish

Mikveh Attendants

Aliza Hodges
Sara Hambling
Shoshana Kahan
Golda Goldman

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