About Us

The Jewish Learning Lab grew out of the desire to have an independent, non-denominational organization where people can delve into Jewish studies at a variety of levels and in multiple settings. Our classes range from art nights, to multi-week series exploring facets of jewish life and jewish texts. 

We aim to educate and inform the student, rather than convince them of anything or prove that a certain brand of Judaism is correct. We believe in promoting a diversity of opinions about Judaism, both from a range of educators and a wide spectrum of of students. Our goal is to use Jewish learning to develop Jewish lives, however that is defined by the individual. We believe that whoever you are as a Jew, whether you are an atheist/ultra orthodox/cultural/Jew-ish/or spiritual but not religious, we believe that knowing more about Jewish history or Jewish texts both classical and modern, will make you a better you.


Avi Finegold, Founder - Rabbi Avi Finegold received his ordination from Yeshivat Noam Hatorah in Montreal under the direction of Rabbi Joshua Shmidman. He studied at Concordia and the University of Chicago and has been Teaching adults in North America for 10 years. He is a founding Chair of Limmud Chicago and a past Chair of LeMood Montreal and is currently the Executive Director of the Montreal Board of Rabbis. 

Cantor Heather Batchelor - Cantor Heather Batchelor graduated from the Jewish Theological Seminary with a Master's in Sacred Music and Diploma of Hazzan. She has over a decade of pulpit experience, and has led diverse congregations in the U.S., Canada, France and Poland. She is currently pursuing an additional master's degree in Judaic Studies, and is enrolled in the Institute for Jewish Spirituality's Meditation Teacher's Training program. In her spare time she is teaching herself to play the ukulele. 

Steven Lapidus, PhD -  Steven Lapidus, is a well-known researcher and teacher of local Jewish life and history.  Having received his doctorate at Concordia University, where he teaches, he has also taught at the State University of New York (SUNY) and McGill.  With a broad background in Jewish history and culture, he has also served as co-curator of the Montreal Holocaust Memorial Centre.  Join him for “Jewish Montreal” and “Resistance during the Holocaust.”