Sarah Birnbach began her encore career as a non-fiction writer in 2016 after successful careers as a human resources management consultant and a family therapist in a juvenile court. She was a sought-after speaker at conferences and delivered more than 500 presentations and workshops. Through her professional life she dedicated herself to enabling individuals to become their best selves.
Sarah has never known a time when she wasn’t writing. She has been journaling since a teen and her decades-long love of journaling led her to become one of the country’s first certified journal facilitators—a designation from the Center for Journal Therapy. She has taught numerous journaling workshops and introduced journaling into her therapeutic work with families.
She is a six-time award winner in the Soul-Making Keats Literary Competition and a two-time award winner from Bethesda Magazine, and her articles have appeared in Talking Writing, Bookwoman, the Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance Journal, the Michigan Jewish History Journal, and Pen in Hand.
Her education includes a bachelor’s degree in sociology from George Washington University, a master’s degree in human resources from American University, and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Maryland.
Sarah is a member of the Chevra Kadisha (Holy Fellowship)—women who perform the holy ritual of preparing a body for burial, midwifing the soul of the deceased from this world to the next. Additionally, she volunteers with Interfaith Works, an organization supporting the homeless, and works to eradicate racism.
Sarah’s memoir, A Daughter’s Kaddish: My Year of Grief, Devotion, and Healing will be published by Wonderwell Press in September 2022. Her story follows her 11-month journey to honor her father’s soul. In doing so, she broke with Jewish tradition to persevere through an unfamiliar world of prayer, incorporating new religious and spiritual practices into her already hectic twenty-first-century life, and ultimately discovering how the path of faith can lead to true healing.
Sarah recently retraced her father’s footsteps through the frontlines of World War II Germany and is at work on her next book, In My Father’s Footsteps.
Possessing an adventurous spirit, Sarah is a certified scuba diver who has also enjoyed cliff rappelling, sky diving, and hang gliding. She lives outside Washington, D. C. with her husband. In addition to indulging in chocolate, her passions include frequenting local bookstores, traveling, dancing, and being an active grandma to her seven grandchildren.