Rabbi Mira Rivera is the first Filipina-American Rabbi to be ordained at The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS). Born in Michigan to immigrant parents, she grew up dancing and developed a love for the arts and a discipline for learning.
Deeply rooted in meditation practices and community organizing, she brings an introspective approach to her practice, while emphasizing relationship building, interconnectedness, collective power, and collective responsibility. Her experiences of being an outsider as a person of color in Jewish spaces inspired her to make spaces for Jews of Color (JOC) by co-founding Harlem Havruta, teaching and mentoring at Ammud: The JOC Torah Academy, and taking part in the first cohort of Dimensions’s Jewish Women of Color (JWOC) Resilience Circle and Bend the Arc’s Selah Cohort 15 for JOCs.
Prior to her ordination in 2015, she danced for the Martha Graham Dance Company and Ensemble under the mentorship of Yuriko Kikuchi, performed under the auspices of Actors’ Equity, and completed a BFA in Film at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts. She spent years as an educator in Jewish institutions, while performing and reaching New York City public school children through National Dance Institute. After ordination, she went on to serve a Chaplain Residency at Mount Sinai Hospital, and community fellowships at DOROT and St. Mary’s Episcopal Church. She currently serves at Romemu as Rabbi and Board Certified Chaplain, following two years as their Jewish Emergent Network Rabbinic Fellow. She is a board member of the Jewish Women’s Foundation of New York, and co-chair of the Rabbinic Council of Jews for Racial and Economic Justice (JFRE
Additionally, she offers preparation classes for B’nai Mitzvah students, conversions, and officiates weddings and other life cycle rituals. She is fluent in English, Spanish, and Tagalog.