Sign In Forgot Password
Reaching Out to Invite You In

Director of Lifelong Learning Carla Adivi

Carla Adivi
Director of Lifelong Learning

Carla Adivi has overseen Jewish education at Valley Outreach Synagogue for over a decade. Under her direction, the innovative JEWELS education program has grown from two in-home classes to a comprehensive life-long education program serving toddlers through retirees. Her desire to inspire people of all ages to embrace the joy of Judaism through authentic Jewish experiences fuels the vision for JEWELS, while her collaborative and compassionate nature helps ensure that everyone is recognized as a unique soul.

A life-long learner herself, Carla studies Mussar (Jewish character development) and conversational Hebrew, and she recently completed a two-year fellowship in the prestigious Mandel Teacher Educator Institute for the purpose of elevating staff development at VOS. She is also an active member in the Religious School Educator’s Network of the Builders of Jewish Education.

Carla is married to her husband Dan for over 30 years. They have three sons, a daughter-in-law and recently became proud grandparents.



Christopher Raymond
Music Director

Music Director Christopher Raymond is a highly acclaimed young composer, lyricist, conductor, and orchestrator who has won an NAACP Award, a Stage Raw Award and a Broadway World Award for his work in musical theatre.

At the age of 15, Christopher began his career playing in the band for “13 the Musical” at the Kirk Douglas Theatre and Mark Taper Forum. He then continued to Broadway, playing for “13 the Musical” at the age of 17. Christopher music-directed, conducted and played piano for 14 large-scale musicals for DOMA Theatre Company in Hollywood, including their production of “Dreamgirls,” which was awarded “Best Musical” at the LA Weekly Awards and at the LA Drama Critics Circle Awards. Christopher was the Music Director, Composer and Orchestrator for several theatre-award shows in Los Angeles held at venues such as the Ahmanson and The Theatre at Ace Hotel. He co-wrote the theme song for the show “Troy,” which opened at the 80,000-seat Beijing National Stadium in July of 2017. Christopher wrote the book, music and lyrics for “Scarlet Letter: The Musical,” which was recently performed at the Greenway Court Theatre in Hollywood. In addition to work in musical theater, Christopher writes music for film and television.

Christopher considers Judaism to be the most important part of his life and describes himself as “truly blessed and honored to be joining the wonderful VOS Community.” He looks forward to engaging the many talented people of all ages in the VOS community in music-making and to furthering Founding Music Director Jack Bielan’s commitment to musical excellence and innovation.


Jack Bielan
Founding Music Director

Founding Music Director Jack Bielan is privileged to have served Valley Outreach Synagogue for thirty-three years—from its inception in 1985 through 2018.

Raised in the Beverly-Fairfax area, he has also been a longtime fixture in the Los Angeles music scene. Serving as a studio keyboardist, arranger and conductor, as well as a producer and composer, Jack’s varied discography includes a Gold Record award and a place in music history for his arranging efforts on James Taylor’s landmark “Sweet Baby James” album and the succeeding single, “Steamroller Blues”/”You’ve Got A Friend.” He has also toured the world as a Music Director and conductor/keyboardist.

In addition to having performed on recordings selling in excess of twenty million copies, Jack regards his spiritual endeavors as “the most significant part of my creative life.” During his tenure as Music Director, he produced and arranged all of VOS’ on-bimah musical presentations, in addition to composing much of the music. His first original CD, “From The Heart Of A Jewish Soul” (which prominently features Rabbi and Rebbetzin Ron and Bronwen Li-Paz) has been called “a contemporary Jewish masterpiece.”

Valley Outreach Synagogue has always been a family affair for Jack. His daughter Megan became a superb vocal soloist on the VOS bimah shortly after her seventh birthday, and her mother, Sheri Montrose, was the first VOS cantorial soloist.

Jack has authored two books, “On Loss” and “Does God Make Mistakes (Holding On To Your Faith At Life’s Most Difficult Moments).” In addition to his Jewish musical compositions, his works of contemporary inspirational and recovery-based material, including his renown “Serenity (The Serenity Prayer Song),” are sung in houses of worship all over the world. He has completed spoken audio recordings of the complete fourth edition of ”The Big Book Of Alcoholics Anonymous” and “Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions,” which are available free of charge on his website as a service to vision-impaired individuals and anyone else in the recovery community who might find them useful.

His personal websites are and


Administrative Staff:

Clergy Assistant, Sharona Jacobs

Finance Administrator, Karen Lavin


JEWELS Administrative Assistant, Judy Gaffin

JEWELS Deputy Program Director, Julie Blair


Mon, January 24 2022 22 Shevat 5782