About Maggid David

I was born and raised in Suburban Detroit.  My dreams were of Paul Bunyan, visiting the moon and playing with the glorious Detroit Tigers.  We were all surprised that I discovered meaning in storytelling, forests and Jewish education.  I became hooked on storytelling when I witnessed the ability of stories to leap directly into the hearts of toddling four year old’s, the coolest of teens and serious adults.

Over 10 years ago I reclaimed the role of Maggid by bringing stories to prayer services, family programs, and interfaith events.  My first CD, The Birth of Love: Tales for the Days of Awe contains stories first told at Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur services.  My newest CD, The Life and Times of Herschel of Ostropol: The Greatest Prankster Ever to Live, is filled with light-hearted stories and will be released later this Fall.  My performance The Jar of Tears, about Rabbi Shapiro of the Warsaw Ghetto, won the Charles Hildebrandt Holocaust Studies Award in honor of its artistic excellence, tehcnical mastery and depth of vision.

My Jewish journey intensified over twenty years ago with a year of classical text study in a Jerusalem Yeshiva.   It was there I discovered Judaism’s ancient love affair with the natural world.  Combining this insight with a M.S. in Environmental Education, I’ve created many innovative programs for the Jewish community over the years. Most recently, this past summer, I trained a cadre of young Maggidim, of young tellers, and created the first Storytelling program at the Brandeis Collegiate Institute (BCI).  BCI is a month long arts immersion and Jewish study program for 19-26 year olds located in Southern California.

Along the way, assorted odd jobs have helped make ends meet, including bread baking, map-making, database building, Jewish teen educating, Hebrew school principal-ing, and teaching new americans digital literacy. WARNING: Don’t get me started on the dark shadow side of computing. These jobs have funded additional trainings including courses at Hebrew College, DLTI, a two year course in prayer leadership, Storytelling for volunteer development and fundraising and intensive workshops with leading teachers.

Here’s a little known fact, I’m also a “Shretelech guide” (Yiddish for the magical little people).  I draw on my experience as an environmental educator and lead “Shretelech Expeditions”.  Kids spot the kindly Shretelech easily, however adults usually have less luck.   At the very least, we all enjoy the quiet pleasures of field and forest, a taste of Judaism’s ancient environmental wisdom, and a few good stories.


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