Interview: Susan Talve

A conversation with the founding rabbi of St. Louis Central Reform Congregation, the only synagogue in St. Louis City.

 

What is your current state of mind?
Hopeful.
What makes you happy?
Connecting with people—really connecting.
What is your idea of misery?
Missing the opportunity to make a difference.
What did you eat for breakfast today?
[Smiling] Haven’t had it yet. [It’s 11:30am.]What is one word that describes you?
Sister.
What trait do you most value in others?
Self-awareness.
What would you most like to be?
Aware enough not to miss the suffering around us in this world so we can respond and do something about it!
What is your favorite color?
I love rainbows: real ones, and pretend ones…
What is your favorite food?
French fries.
What food do you like the least?
Meat.
What talent do you wish you had?
I wish I were more musical.
Who is your favorite artist?
My husband as poet.
What excites you?
People working together in ways they could never work alone.
What do you consider a turnoff?
Gossip.
What do you love?
How loving my family has taught me that everyone is connected, that the separation between us is really an illusion.
What do you hate?
When self-interest gets in the way of the common good.
What are you most looking forward to?
Being a grandmother.
What is one thing that you wish would happen?
Quality and affordable healthcare for everyone. And I mean everyone.
What is something interesting that you just learned?
That in Israel, where women have more equal footing, they have more successful startups per capita than any other country.
What is your hidden talent?
I don’t think I really have one. I think I use everything I have just to get by every day.
What is something that you want to learn?
I always want to deepen my knowledge of my own faith.
What would you be in another life?
Better.
What is your current obsession?
Downsizing.
What is your favorite word?
Chutzpah.
What is your least favorite word?
Fear.
What is on your “bucket list?”
To leave the world better than I found it.
Who is your personal hero?
My father. At 84, he still wakes up singing every day.
If you could have a conversation with your younger self, what would you say? Take advantage of every opportunity to deepen your knowledge. And…take better care of your teeth.

 

220_120.jpgALIVE gets up close and personal with Susan Talve

 

Photo credit: Photographed by Jennifer Silverberg

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