Steven M. Stark, Executive Director
Steve has been a passionate and dedicated Jewish communal lay leader for over 25 years. Most recently, Steve served as the Treasurer of the Allied Jewish Federation (now Jewish Colorado), Treasurer of the Jewish Community Foundation, and Treasurer for the Mizel Arts & Culture Center at the JCC. Steve also served as President of the Colorado Chapter of the American Jewish Committee. There, he was recognized on a national level when he was selected for the Konrad Adenauer Fellowship, the Shalom Comay Fellowship, and the Blaustein Leadership Institute.
In 2010, Steve’s commitment to the Denver Jewish community and deep love for Jewish life led to his selection as a Wexner Fellow, giving him the opportunity to learn with some of the most prominent scholars of our day. With gratitude, he brought his new knowledge and energy back to Denver where he put it to work in the community. At the Hebrew Educational Alliance, he, along with the rabbis and a small team of lay leaders, developed Shir Hadash, a vibrant new service that increased engagement within the congregation and the community.
Steve joined Temple Emanuel as Executive Director to further pursue his life-long passion for Jewish communal work. Previously, he was the Managing Partner at StarkSchenkein CPAs, a 25-year-old family business that successfully merged with a larger, regional firm. While at StarkSchenkein, Steve’s areas of expertise included Merger & Acquisition, Strategic Planning, Business Valuation, and Litigation. Steve also maintained operational and financial oversight of the firm.
During his time with StarkSchenkein, Steve was proud to lend his experience to area civic and professional organizations. He served as Treasurer of the Board for Cherry Creek Dance and provided his expertise to the Association for Corporate Growth, the Denver Council on Foreign Relations, and others.
Steve earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from the University of Colorado, Boulder and his MBA from University of Colorado, Denver. Steve is a third-generation native of Denver, Colorado.
Scott Esserman, Interim Religious School Director
Scott Esserman is a lifelong educator. His experiences range from early childhood education to high school and from informal to formal education. He has taught middle school and high school in public (Cherry Creek and Northfield) and private (Kent Denver and St. Mary’s Academy) schools in both core content and elective instruction.
His journey began as a counselor at Shwayder Camp where he has served twice as Camp Director. Having advised Friedman Club Temple Youth Group, Scott also taught in our Early Childhood Center.
In addition to his depth and breadth of education experience, Scott has also served on the Temple Emanuel board, various iterations of the Camp Committee, and numerous search committees. As a part of that service, Scott has worked on multiple strategic plans.
Married to Mieke Thorson, Scott is a proud parent of Jeira and Isaiah Esserman. Jeira, a junior at Manual High School, was confirmed this past spring and served as an SIT at Shwayder Camp this past summer. Isaiah is a 6th grader at DSST Montview who completed his 5th summer at Shwayder and will become Bar Mitzvah summer of 2021.