Director of Operations

Laura Intfen

Laura has been a member of Beth Torah since 1996 and a member of the staff since 2001. Prior to joining the staff, Laura was an active leader in the community serving on numerous committees, on the Board of Trustees and on the Executive Committee. As a staff member, Laura began as a part time Volunteer Coordinator. She then served as Membership Services Coordinator before being named Director of Operations where she is responsible for communications, administration, human resources and building community among Beth Torah members. Email Laura at

Music Director

Emily Tummons

Emily Tummons has served Congregation Beth Torah as Music Director since 2014. She is responsible for all aspects of Beth Torah's musical life, including arranging music for small vocal/instrumental teams in our Shabbat worship services, rehearsing with our B'nai Mitzvah students, running our Kids Choir and Adult Choir, leading both Contemporary and Traditional High Holy Day services, training volunteers, composing new Jewish liturgical music, directing sermon-in-song programs, and teaching Hebrew music in our religious school.

Emily was classically trained in music theory and arranging, and she is proficient with numerous instruments including oboe, piano, mountain dulcimer, and klezmer accordion. Before arriving at Beth Torah, Emily served two congregations in the Kansas City Area: Congregation Beth Shalom (Conservative) and The Temple, Congregation B'nai Jehudah (Reform). During this time she led Tot Shabbats, parent/baby classes, music classes in the religious school and Jewish preschools, and was a cantorial soloist for High Holy Day Family Services.

Prior to pursuing her professional career in Jewish music, Emily studied education and writing, earning a bachelor's degree in English, and worked for five years as the head Curriculum Copy Editor for children's religious education at a local publishing house.

She later earned a masters degree in linguistics from the University of Kansas in Lawrence, where she was a Foreign Language Area Studies Fellow. Emily's graduate research focused on a language called Kaqchikel Maya, spoken by more than 500,000 people in Guatemala. She was the faculty instructor and head curriculum writer for Kaqchikel in the KU linguistics department for seven years before coming to Beth Torah, and also served as the Director of UNC/Duke University's Study Abroad program: the Yucatec Maya Summer Institute, in Mexico.

In 2007, she co-founded Wuqu' Kawoq | Maya Health Alliance, an NGO that delivers linguistically responsible medical care in Guatemala by operating in indigenous languages. She also founded and directed WK's Kaqchikel immersion school in Guatemala. She was the President of the WK Board of Directors for six years, and now serves on the Advisory Board.

In each dimension of life, Emily has dedicated herself to the work of tikkun olam, repairing the world. She believes that music has a great power to mend, and she strives to inspire every congregant to carve out his or her own unique ways of connecting through Jewish music.

 Email Emily at:

Choir Director


Carmen Dieker

At Congregation Beth Torah, Carmen Dieker is the director of the Adult Choir. She also is a member of the Friday night music team, singing and playing many instruments. She enjoys participating in the ongoing Contemplation Nights, Shabbat Huddles, and other programs. Carmen assists music director Emily Tummons in facilitating all of the various musical happenings of CBT, including the Men’s Group, Women’s Group, octets, trios, and instrumental ensembles.

Carmen composes original pieces for special occasions at CBT. Her compositions and arrangements are used and performed in CBT's Shabbat services, Spring Sessions, Hanukkah Programs, High Holy Days, and significant milestones in the life of the congregation.

Carmen teaches orchestra and private lessons. She has also worked as an accompanist and musician in Kansas City for the past ten years. She has participated in area groups including various bands, the Lee’s Summit Symphony, and the River Sisters.

Email Carmen at:

Director of Finance


Tara Hyder

Tara joined the Beth Torah staff in August 2016. Tara has 15 plus years of accounting, finance and internal auditing experience with several local non-profit organizations. Tara and her husband, Kevin, have two daughters and one son.

Email Tara at:

Office Manager


Robin O’Bryan

Robin has worked at Beth Torah since 1989. Before coming to Beth Torah she worked in the school office at Congregation B’nai Jehudah for eight years.  Robin’s responsibilities include greeting and assisting congregants and visitors coming into the office and coordinating the calendar and assisting the rabbi.  Robin and her husband have three grown daughters.

Email Robin at


   Barbara Kitt

Barbara Kitt joined the Beth Torah staff in July of 2008; however her connection to the synagogue began in 1996 when her oldest daughter started Sunday School.  Barb is the Beth Torah bookkeeper, and as such is very involved in the day to day financial life of the synagogue. Barb, her husband Jeffrey, and their two daughters, Alexa and Sydney have been actively involved in many aspects of life at Beth Torah.

Email Barb at

Front Desk

Alyssa Schildhorn

Alyssa holds a part time position in the office at Beth Torah. Before coming to Beth Torah, she graduated with a degree in Respiratory Therapy. Alyssa’s responsibilities include greeting congregants, answering the phones, ordering office supplies for teachers, and overall office and Weiner Religious School support. Alyssa and her husband just recently moved to Kansas City from Omaha, NE.

Email Alyssa at:

Sharon Altman

Sharon has held a part time position with Beth Torah since 1995. She is responsible for donations and yahrzeits as well as assisting staff members as needed. She also has been involved in the congregation’s Golf Tournaments and Directory Fundraising efforts. Sharon and her husband have two grown children. They have been members of Beth Torah since 1991.