Creator(s) bio

Interviewers- Zayne Nordberg: I am a 4th year history student at HSU, I organized and conducted these interviews for an internship, focusing on Humboldt county during the COVID-19 pandemic. I sought out interviews with two religious leaders from the Jewish community in Humboldt county, and asked them a series of questions regarding their experience. Both interviews were conducted in the fall of 2020. Madeline Wilson: Madeline is a religious studies student that joined me for my interview with Rabbi Steinberg. Her perspective from a different discipline helped create a better interview. Subjects- Rabbi Eli Cowen: Rabbi Eli is the leader of the HSU Jewish Student Group, and teaches at Chabad of Humboldt in Arcata, CA. The Chabad of Humboldt's teachings are "dedicated to providing every Jew regardless of philosophy, affiliation, level of awareness or commitment, an open door environment for strengthening and enhancing Jewish life."( Rabbi Naomi Steinberg: Rabbi Naomi has been associated with Temple Beth El for thirty six years, as a community participant since 1981, as a student rabbi from 1995 to 2004, and as resident rabbi since 2004. She is also a lecturer at HSU, where she has instructed courses on Introduction to Judaism, Jewish Mystical Tradition, Women in Religion, and Torah and Kabbalah.


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Oral History

Creation Date



Interviews with Rabbi Eli Cowen of Chabad of Humboldt, and Rabbi Naomi Steinberg of Temple Beth El, regarding their religious communities during the COVID-19 affected year of 2020. Humboldt State history student Zayne Nordberg, working as an intern, reached out to two local religious leaders and asked them questions regarding their congregations and personal experience through the pandemic. Questions featured are regarding the transition from in-person to digital communication, personal experiences, and responses to the changing conditions imposed by the Corona virus.

Interview with Rabbi Steinberg was conducted: Monday, Oct 26, 2020

Interview with Rabbi Cowen was conducted: Tuesday, Nov 3, 2020

RabbiEli-Transcript.pdf (65 kB)
Text transcription of interview with Rabbi Eli Cowen

RabbiSteinberg-Transcript.pdf (105 kB)
Text transcription of interview with Rabbi Naomi Steinberg

RabbiSteinbergInterview.m4a (26486 kB)
Audio of interview with Rabbi Naomi Steinberg

RabbiEliInterview.wav (99024 kB)
Audio of interview with Rabbi Eli Cowen