Meet Our Team
Rabbi Andrew Pepperstone
Rabbi Andrew Pepperstone's rabbinate is devoted to:
meeting people where they are
collaborating with partners
balancing tradition and innovation
cultivating a multiplicity of pathways into Jewish learning and living
centering on our relationships with each other, Torah, and God
Rabbi Pepperstone received his rabbinic ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary (New York City) in 2002, where he also studied Jewish Education at the Davidson School of Jewish Education. Following his ordination, he served as rabbi in various capacities in Louisville, KY, including director of their local USY chapter, director of the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School, and Assistant Rabbi for Youth and Education at Keneseth Israel Congregation. From 2008 to 2011,
Rabbi Pepperstone served as the first Rabbi-in-Residence at the Gross Schechter Day School in Cleveland, OH. From 2011 to 2020, Rabbi Pepperstone served as the rabbi of Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas in Syracuse, New York, where in addition to serving his congregation, he also was involved in Syracuse's interfaith community, both in the areas of dialogue and education, as well as social action and justice. He holds a BA in Linguistics with a Minor in Hebrew Language from the University of California in San Diego.
During the past two decades, Rabbi Pepperstone has made professional development a cornerstone of his growth as a rabbi, including non-profit management, davening leadership, and pastoral care. Rabbi Pepperstone is married to Cantor Paula Pepperstone, who served Keneseth Israel as their first female cantor between 2002 to 2008. They have three children who arrived in Wichita in 2020: Hadar, Aviyah, and Matan. In addition, Rabbi Pepperstone is an avid cook and bread baker. A board game enthusiast, he aspires to develop a series of role playing games based on the Jewish lifecycle and festival calendar. Rabbi Pepperstone is a Hebrew grammar guru, stand-up comedy aficionado, Star Wars expert, and pop culture trivia master.
Rabbi and Cantor Pepperstone and their kids were excited to arrive in Wichita in summer 2020, and are enjoying the Jewish community of Wichita and the greater community of Wichita and Kansas.
Cantor Paula Pepperstone
Cantor Paula Pepperstone grew up in New Jersey singing in her synagogue’s children’s choir and reading Torah. Encouraged by her rabbi and cantor to attend the Jewish Theological Seminary’s H.L. Miller Cantorial School, she did so after graduating from Indiana University’s School of Music, and serving on the Hillel board and leading High Holiday services at IU.
After cantorial school, she and her family moved to Louisville, Kentucky where she was the cantor of Keneseth Israel. After six fulfilling years there, including three years on the Cantors Assembly's Executive Council, the five Pepperstones moved to Cleveland, Ohio where Cantor Pepperstone focused on pedagogy. The Pepperstones spent nine years in Syracuse, New York. While there, she worked side-by-side with her husband (a rabbi) at Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas, was the Director of the Rabbi Jacob H. Epstein High School of Jewish Studies, and taught in the Syracuse Community Hebrew School. Her community work there spanned serving on the Syracuse Jewish Family Services/Group Residence Board and on the Education Committee at the Syracuse Hebrew Day School to co-founding a monthly Jewish chant group.
In 2020, Cantor Pepperstone and her family moved to Wichita, Kansas, where she is the cantor for Congregation Ahavath Achim - Hebrew Congregation, and her husband is the rabbi. The Pepperstones have discovered the warmth of this community and the beauty of the Plains.
AAC Board Members
President: Ellen Beren
First VP: Jeff Greenberg
Second VP: Buma Fridman
Secretary: Dan Chocron
Treasurer: Lisa Klaskin
Gabbai: Jan Hoffman
Board of Directors of Ahavath Achim Congregation 2022-2023