Rabbi Debra Robbins has served Temple Emanu-El since 1991 and currently works closely with the Social Justice and Adult Jewish Learning Councils, the Pastoral Care department and a variety of Worship initiatives. In addition to pastoral, life cycle and preaching responsibilities, she is a partner on Temple’s programming team and teaches a variety of classes for adults.
Outside of Temple, Rabbi Robbins has served on the board of Jewish Family Service of Greater Dallas and Family Gateway and is the founding chair of the Vaad HaMikvah of the Rabbinic Association of Greater Dallas. Rabbi Robbins is involved nationally with the Central Conference of American Rabbis where she served as Vice President for Leadership, as a mentor for the Ethics 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.
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.
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.
Contact Rabbi Robbins’ assistant, Jennifer Dietz, at email@example.com.