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October 4, 2015 | 21st Tishrei 5776

Cantor Neil Schwartz, Congregation Agudas Israel, Saskatoon, SK, Canada

Debbie helped create Hava Nashir, the URJ songleader training at OSRUI. While I saw Debbie most summers at CAJE and other venues, it was our time together at the one Hava Nashir we shared that gave me an opportunity to get to know her better as a friend as well as a colleague.

It was her influence and that of other Reform colleagues that made me realize how much contemporary Jewish music informs my otherwise traditional approach to the Cantorate. This helped me take the fulfilling step of recently becoming a dual member in the ACC, in addition to three decades in the CA. Debbie's warm music will live on in the Western Prairies of Canada, in the lives of our student and adult congregants of all ages.

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