When Ruth Anne married, she—in the midst of a hectic schedule doing an intense International Montessori educational year—and her husband, Halley—in medical school, on an even busier schedule—decided to set aside Shabbat to insure time together. That opened up a world of Jewish observance and sensibility. Her wise grandparents encouraged her to become kosher so they could come visit and that was the beginning of more extensive physical connections to Jewish observance. In the process, a deepening relationship to spiritual-soul aspects became paramount.
As Ruth Anne moved from Montessori teacher, to mom of two boys, to providing programming at her synagogues (family, meditation, healing, children’s and special needs services), both during Shabbat and mid-week, to working with special needs children in preparation for their Bar/Bat Mitzvah her Jewish studies and explorations of the worlds of wonder, appreciation and kabbalah began to round out her sense of self.
Music has always been a pathway into Ruth Anne’s heart. Learning chanting over many years with many wonderful teachers (Shefa Gold, Andrea Cohen-Keiner, Karen Drucker, and amazing cantors at the Women’s Cantors’ Network) created an ongoing, powerful support through challenging times as well as during easier, exultant celebrations. Ruth Anne has found compassion, ease and renewal through music.
Today, Ruth Anne lives with her husband in Santa Fe, New Mexico, appreciating the vistas, gardening, refreshing air, amazing hiking and community. They both spend significant amounts of time enjoying and helping with granddaughters in the East, along with their sons and daughter-in-law. She visits her Alaska family each summer and spends more and more time in celebration and wonder.