About Our Rabbis

The Reform Temple of Putnam Valley (RTPV) is delighted to announce the appointment of Rabbi Steve Altarescu and Rabbi Laurie Levy, effective July 1. The couple, already seasoned by previous careers and having raised families, met while studying at the Academy of Jewish Religion. “We are thrilled to embark on a new path with Rabbi Altarescu and Rabbi Levy. Their unique partnership, breadth of experience, spiritual passion and energy will greatly benefit our temple,” noted former RTPV President Shimon BenDavid.

Steve Altarescu was ordained in May 2014 through the Academy of Jewish Religion (AJR). He holds a Bachelors degree in Religious Studies and Literature from Hobart and William Smith College and a Masters degree in Counseling from the Bank Street College of Education. Steve did his rabbinic internship at the Riverdale Temple in the Bronx, and has served as Rabbi at the Center for Applied Judaism in NYC, and B’not Yam in Belle Harbor. He is currently serving as a Chaplain at Westchester Medical Center. Steve taught religious school for 16 years at Temple Beth Shalom in Hastings-on-Hudson, was a director and counselor at Kingsbridge Heights Community Center and JFK High School, both in the Bronx, and ran a business in New York City for 24 years. Steve brings a passion for Jewish spirituality, meditation, prayer and Torah study to RTPV.

Laurie Levy was ordained in May 2015 through the Academy of Jewish Religion (AJR).  She has also studied at the Jewish Theological Seminary, the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education and the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem. She did her rabbinic internship at Morristown Jewish Center in NJ and has led services at the Center for Applied Judaism in NYC and B’not Yam in Belle Harbor. She holds Masters degrees in Education and Mathematics from the University of Pennsylvania. She taught middle and high school Math in New Jersey and Computer Science at William Paterson College. Laurie is a yoga instructor and has a certificate in teaching Torah Yoga. 

Both are avid bikers and hikers. Other interests of the couple include yoga, art, music, challah baking and Jewish vegetarian cooking. Rabbi Levy and Rabbi Altarescu were married in 2009, have six adult children, and divide their time between their homes in Putnam Valley and Riverdale, NY.