In the spring of 1977, five families in the Western Reserve area felt there was a need for a Temple in the immediate area. They were motivated by the fact that their children were beginning school and wanted them to have a Jewish education. The families met with Rabbi David Hachen, Regional Director of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations, and Temple Beth Shalom – a.k.a. The Western Reserve Synagogue – was founded.
After an extensive search, Temple Beth Shalom rented space in the Twinsburg Library. The Temple began to grow with the help of Cleveland Synagogues, Bureau of Jewish Education, UAHC, and many Temple volunteers. Rabbi Hachen’s daughter, Debbie, a student at the Hebrew Union College, served as the congregation’s first student Rabbi. Debbie was with the Temple for two years and was followed by a succession of student rabbis.
In 1986, Temple Beth Shalom moved to Hudson, where it began holding services in the Temple on the Green, owned by congregants Larry and Susan Terkel. In the fall of 2005, we moved into a new home at 50 Division Street in Hudson, the former site of the Western Reserve Christian Church.
In 1987, Rabbi Stuart Gertman became the Temple’s first ordained Rabbi and served the congregation for five years. Rabbi Steven Adams led the congregation from 1992 to 1994, when the congregation grew from 80 to 110 families. Rabbi Susan Stone served as our rabbi from 1994 to 2009, through a period of great change. Rabbi Sheldon Ezring came to the congregation in 2009, then retired in 2014, becoming our Rabbi Emeritus. From 2014 to 2018, the congregation was led by Rabbi Jim Egolf. In 2018, we welcomed Rabbi Michael Ross as our new religious leader, through a cooperative arrangement with Hillel at Kent State University.