Secular Jewish group looking for a new name

Tri-Valley Cultural Jews — a community that identifies with the Jewish people through family, culture and history rather than religion — has announced its intention to change its name.

And Rabbi Judith Seid, the community’s Pleasanton-based leader, is happily seeking outside help.

The decision came at the community’s annual meeting this spring. “We agreed that Tri-Valley Cultural Jews no longer expresses who we really are,” the secular Humanistic community wrote on its website a few weeks ago. “Our membership ranges far outside the Dublin-Pleasanton-Livermore [Tri-Valley] area to include Brentwood, San Ramon, Fremont and Castro Valley, and we want people in the wider area to know they have a place to belong.”

Seid said the group is gathering both geographical terms and descriptions. Part of the problem is that the area stretching from Fremont to Brentwood to Livermore doesn’t have a geographical term to describe it.

Ideas being tossed around include East Bay, Greater East Bay, East Counties, Diablo Area and Delta-Diablo. Possible descriptions include Secular Jewish Community, Cultural Jews and Secular Jewish Circle.

Some early name suggestions include Beit Yerushateynu (house of our heritage), Kehillat Tzedek (justice community) and Hiloni (secular). Seid pointed out that the community’s sister organization in Los Angeles is called Sholem (peace/harmony).

Seid said that while anyone can suggest a name, only members will be able to vote. For more information about the community, which holds holiday celebrations, educational and social events, visit To submit a suggestion, email or call (925) 485-1049.