Sign In Forgot Password

Melany Spielman

Co- President

Melany moved to the Central Coast in 2015 when she retired to be near her daughter's family in San Luis Obispo.  After a career as a recreation therapist, and then a university professor, she is now concentrating on being a grandma to her 8 grandchildren. Melany and her husband Larry loved the warmth and caring of this small but mighty Jewish community and became members in 2015.  Melany studied Judaism with Rabbi Janice and is a proud Jew by Choice. 

Larry Spielman


Born in New York , growing up and  bar mitzvahed  in Chicago,  a SF Bay Area resident - since 1979, retired to Atascadero and the Central Coast in 2015. We are thankful to our Cal Poly children  for introducing us to the beauty and serenity of of the region.  I was fortunate to work as a financial controller for  a  growing  Newspaper chain in the 80's and 90's (pre-internet), and  a National food company in the 90's and 2000's. earning an MBA, and CPA along the way. I married my lovely wife Melany in 1996 , ironically the same time Congregation Ohr Tzafon began.  We've never been to a friendlier, more  inviting, cordial synagogue, and  I was honored to be its Treasurer for the last 3 years,  and am now extemely honored to be Co-President of this awesome Congregation.


Steve Salzman

Vice President, Building and Grounds 

Nachshon Margalit 

Vice President, Ritual and Welfare

Melissa Trinidad

Vice President, Education

After living in both northern and southern California for many years, Melissa Trinidad moved back to her hometown of Atascadero in 2014.  It was then that she discovered her true home at COT. Melissa has worked as an educator of all ages for the past 20+ years and has been involved in Jewish Childhood Education as a parent, volunteer and educator for the past thirteen years.  She enjoys hiking, yoga, dancing, gardening and spending time with her husband Doug and their two children Nathan and Ariela. 

Leslie Moss

Vice President, Social Events 

Leslie is enthusiastic about being a member of the board, again, after a 5 year hiatus. She and her husband, Rick, moved to Paso Robles in 1978 where they taught in the public school district for over 30 years. They have three grown children and four grandchildren. In retirement, Leslie is involved in several community and philanthropic endeavors.  She treasures time with her family; especially assisting her parents in their golden years.  She and Rick have been members of COT for 20 years and value being part of the North County Jewish community. A significant highlight of  Leslie's life was studying with Rabbi Janice to become a Bat Mitzvah with six other special women, in 2012. 

Jackie Ramsdell 


Michael Mogull



Naomi Blakely

Vice President, Membership

Naomi has served on the Board since her retirement from teaching special education, in 2012.  She relishes the opportunity to be a contributing member to our wonderful synagogue. She and her husband, David, are the proud parents of two young men, one of whom is married and has made them grandparents, one of the best roles on earth!  In addition to visiting them, Naomi is also actively involved in volunteer activities. Both her mother and her mother-in-law are 96, and she and David spend as much time with them as they can. They also play bridge, go camping, and travel.  Last year, Naomi and three other fabulous women became B’not Mitzvah, concluding a year of deeply meaningful study with our Rabbi Janice. 

Rick Moss

Vice President, Ways and Means

Rick and his wife, Leslie have lived in Paso Robles for the last 40 years. He spent 30 of those years teaching in Paso Robles. He is the proud dad of 3 wonderful children. He and Leslie have been members of Congregation Ohr Tzafon for 20 years and they both have served in many board and committee positions. One of Rick’s great pleasures is the COT Book Club of which he is a founding member. Since the club’s inception, in 2010, members have read and discussed 73 books.


Irv Shelub

Vice President, Adult Education

Samantha Mogull

Vice President, Communications

Carrie White 

Vice, President Social Action

Carrie White joined the COT family in February 2018. Although originally from New Jersey, she has called the Central Coast home since 1998 and lives in Atascadero with her husband and two children.  She works in Administration at Sierra Vista Regional Medical Center as the Executive Assistant to the Central Coast Market Chief Executive Officer. Carrie has been an active member of the San Benito Road Elementary School PTA Executive Board since 2014 and currently serves on the Executive Board of the 24th District PTA and CASA of San Luis Obispo County. Carrie is very proud to dedicate her time as a volunteer and advocate to help enrich the lives of our future generations. 

Theresa Hirsch

Representative, Member at Large

Jean Lowe

Representative, Member at Large

Rita Becker 

Past Co-President

Rita Becker, originally from South Africa, moved to Irvine, Orange County in 1997, with her husband Jerome and her three children       Daniel, Lance and Monique. After their children had graduated from college, Rita and Jerome looked for a town to move to so that the pace of life would not be as hectic. Rita loves the coast line and Jerome loves the forests, so they found a match in Cambria, where the pines meet the sea. When looking for a congregation, they felt that COT welcomed them with open arms and caring hearts. This felt like home.

Jerome Becker

Past Co-President 

Originally from South Africa, Jerome and his wife Rita lived in Southern California since 1997 with their three children Daniel, Lance and Monique. After many visits to the Central Coast, they finally moved to Cambria in 2013.  They found the wonderful warm congregation of COT and said, "We are home!" Jerome is an entrepreneur who has owned a general dealer store in S. Africa and an auto parts wholesaler in Riverside. He enjoys his family and RV'ing across the USA.  

Update this content.

Update this content.

Wed, February 26 2020 1 Adar 5780