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Rabbi Nina H. Mandel has been with Congregation Beth El since the summer of 2002. She began as a part-time student rabbi and was hired full time after her ordination from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Wyncote, PA in 2003. She also holds a Master’s degree in Anthropology from New York University and a BA from the University of Pennsylvania.


In addition to her full-time duties as rabbi for Beth El, Rabbi Nina is a lecturer at Susquehanna University teaching classes in Jewish philosophy and culture, Women’s Studies, Diversity Studies, and Jewish film. She also co-leads an interfaith engagement class for SU students for two-weeks in Jerusalem. Rabbi Nina teaches periodically at Bucknell University and has been a guest lecturer at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. 


Prior to becoming a rabbi she worked for a variety of non-profit organizations consulting on community, resource, and board development.

Lectures and Awards


  • ACLU PA Central Susquehanna Chapter award for Religious Leadership, 2016

  • Presenter, Making Sense of Food, 2nd Global Conference, 2013 “Why Do You Care What I Eat: Commensality and Kashrut Explanations”

  • Peacemaker of the Year Award, Lewisburg Center for Non-Violent Living Lewisburg, 2012

  • Chair and program coordinator for two Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association conventions in 2009 and 2010, entitled “Jews, Race, and Class in North America”

  • Speaker and Humanitarian Award Winner for local United Church Women, 2009

Publications Include:


  • “Why Do You Care What I Eat: Commensality and Kashrut Explanations” in Making Sense of Food, e-publication, 2015

  • “Sukkot” in Guide to Jewish Practice series, Reconstructionist Press, 2011

  • “Shoftim” on the Mekor Hayyim (Jewish Federation of North America-Rabbinic Council) website, August, 2011

  • “Commentary” in Guide for Jewish Ethics series, Reconstructionist Press, 2008, 2009, 2010

  • “Ten Commandments Are Not Enough for a Toddler” in The MotherHood, March 2006

  • “Responding to Intermarriage” in The Reconstructionist, Spring 2005

  • “Haftarat Acharei Mot” in The Women’s Haftarah Commentary, Rabbi Elyse Goldstein, ed. Jewish Lights Publishing, 2004

  • “Baking and Spirituality” in Nashim Magazine, Spring 2002

  • “Reconsidering the Meanings of Diaspora” in Gesher v’Kesher: A Bridge and Connection. June 1999, Vol. 8, No. 1


Affiliations Include:

  • Board of Governors, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

  • Advisory Committee, Center for Jewish Ethics Guide to Jewish Practice Series, Reconstructionist Rabbinical College

  • Member, Rabbis for Human Rights.

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