Rabbi Debra Robbins has served Temple Emanu-El since 1991, teaching, preaching and praying, caring for members in times of need, and leading the congregation in a variety of initiatives and projects across all departments.
Outside of Temple, Rabbi Robbins serves as the chair of the Vaad HaMikvah of the Rabbinic Association of Greater Dallas which she helped to establish. Rabbi Robbins is involved nationally with the Central Conference of American Rabbis where currently serves as Chair of the Task Force on Convening, she served as Vice President for Leadership, as a mentor for the Ethics Committee, chair of the Convention Committee, and she is a member of the Women’s Rabbinic Network. She served as President of Reading Village, a non-profit organization working in Guatemala to help teens become leaders through literacy. In 2020, in response to the pandemic she co-founded Common Table at the Fox and Crow, providing 20,000 meals to those in need in the town of Wellfleet Massachusetts.
Originally from Newton, Mass., Rabbi Robbins grew up at Temple Israel of Boston. While in rabbinic school, she served congregations in Kokomo, Ind., Anchorage, Alaska, and Los Angeles, Calif. She was ordained in June of 1991 at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio, after receiving her Master of Arts degree in Hebrew Letters from the Los Angeles campus of HUC-JIR. She attended Colby College in Maine and received her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of California at Berkeley. She has published essays in: Ecology and the Jewish Spirit: Where Nature and the Sacred Meet, in The Women's Torah Commentary, in Lights in the Forest Lights in the Forest: Rabbis Respond to Twelve Essential Jewish Questions (CCAR Press, 2014), in Gates of Shabbat, Revised Edition (CCAR Press) and in Reform Judaism Magazine. She is the author of Opening Your Heart with Psalm 27:A Spiritual Practice for the Jewish New Year published in 2019 by CCAR Press and released an APP to accompany the book in 2021.
On a more personal note, Rabbi Robbins has traveled with her husband, Larry S. Robins, President and CEO of PediPlace in Lewisville, and her son, Sam, a recent graduate of the University of Denver, to nine United States National Parks, Egypt and Guatemala and made more than 20 trips to Israel in her lifetime. She treasures time walking her golden retriever Baskin and vacations regularly on Cape Cod.
To contact Rabbi Debra Robbins, click here.