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High Holidays

Led by Rabbi Mendel Simons & Acapella group

Hakim Synagogue at YJP

6100 Wilshire Blvd Suite 400 

Get to know the team! They're dedicated to revolutionizing prayer and making your High Holidays as relatable and relevant as ever. Make sure to introduce yourself!


Mendel  Simons 
Rabbi/ Spiritual Guide

Mendel co-founded YJP Los Angeles in 2012, in an attempt to create a community that he couldn't quite find. Born and raised in Sydney, Australia, Mendel studied at Rabbinic School in Israel, Budapest and New York. Having dabbled in the study of psychology and relationships around the world, Mendel has a serious penchant for people. When he's not counseling couples or officiating weddings, Mendel spends his time hiking the local hills - sparking inspiration for creating new and unique platforms and opportunities for young Jewish professionals to connect with each other and their heritage. Mendel lives in Hancock Park with his wife Rachey and their four children. Let's just say he's finally found that community he was looking for. It's YJP LA.

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Rachey Simons 

In co-founding YJP LA with her husband Mendel, Rachey sought to bring a new vitality to the lives of the young Jewish women around her. There seemed to be plenty of local traditional Judaism in LA, but much of it was missing the life and the energy behind all those customs. Born in Ohio and raised in Chicago, this thoroughly midwestern girl truly believed that if you build it, they will come. And did they ever! From Rachey's Loaves of Love challah baking classes to women's night outs, to preparing brides for their wedding, to crowding around her family Shabbos table to enjoy her beloved home cooking, and partake in the joys that come from experiencing Shabbat with their four young children, young Jewish professionals have been joining their extended family community by the dozens. And lots of them, for a side of Rachey's no-fail spitfire feminine wisdom! 

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Aron Niasoff

Music Director

Aron was born into music, to his father - both an acclaimed Australian Chazan and musician, and his mother - a musician and composer. Raised in Sydney, Aron sang in his father's synagogue choir from the early age of five. After galavanting the globe in an exploration of ethnic music, Aron moved to LA four years ago bringing with him the edge he had acquired, and channeling the choir charm to work some YJP services magic!

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YJP Acapella 

Directors of good vibes

Meet Nathan Heldman, Nathan Fertig, Jake Goldman, Zack Palmer, Jack Lipson, Andrew Hudson, Omer Shrem, and Adam Schwartz.

The YJP Acapella group was formed in 2015 in an effort to heighten the connection of people to prayer and inject some serious soul into the High Holiday experience. From nostalgic notes, familiar from childhood, to freshly-written spine-chilling choruses, the lyrical accompaniment of human harmonies inspire the senses and uplift the spirit in an unparalleled melodic manifestation.  

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Kids Program

Childrens Program

Holiday-appropriate crafts, games, and activities on-site in a separate area for all kids attending services with their parents. 

YJP's attending the High Holidays are also going to:

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