Why Be Jewish 2007 Attendees

Joshua Aaronson is the Saidye Rosner Bronfman Rabbinic Chair at Temple Har Shalom in Park City Utah. He has held rabbinic appointments in Buffalo, Cleveland and Australia.

Daniel Boyarin is Professor of Talmudic Culture and holder of the Herman P. and Sophia Taubman Chair, Departments of Near Eastern Studies and Rhetoric University of California at Berkeley. He is the author, most recently of BorderLines: The Partition of Judaeo Christianity, University of Pennsylvania Press.

Anita Diamant is a journalist and a writer. Among her numerous publications, she has written six handbooks to Jewish life and lifecycle events. She is the author of the national bestseller, The Red Tent . Her most recent book and third novel is The Last Days of Dogtown.

David Ellenson is President of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He is the author of Tradition in Transition: Orthodoxy, Halakhah and the Boundaries of Modern Jewish History , Rabbi Esriel Hildesheimer and the Creation of a Modern Jewish Orthodoxy , and After Emancipation: Jewish Religious Responses to Modernity .


Charlotte Fonrobert is Associate Professor in the Religious Studies department of Stanford University. She is the author of Menstrual Purity: Rabbinic and Christian Reconstructions of Biblical Gender .

David Gedzelman is Executive Director of Jewish Life Network Steinhardt Foundation and was the Founding Creative and Rabbinic Director of Makor. He has served as Director of Hillel and Rabbi in Residence at the University of Judaism in Los Angeles and a Lecturer in Rabbinics at the University of Judaism's Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies.

Clare Goldwater is Director of Hillel's Joseph Meyerhoff Center for Jewish Learning. She has served as program director, tour educator and Web site manager for Ramah Programs in Israel. She is the author and editor of HERitage & HIStory: Visions for an Equal Future , a sourcebook of materials for Jewish women.

Arthur Green is Founding Dean of the Hebrew College Rabbinical School and Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies at Brandeis University. He is the author and editor of over fifteen books including most recently, Ehyeh: A Kabbalah for Tomorrow.

Tova Hartman is Professor of Education at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, specializing in gender studies. She is most recently the author of Appropriately Subversive: Modern Mothers in Traditional Religions .

Shai Held serves as Scholar-in-Residence at Kehilat Hadar, teaches at the Jewish Theological Seminary, and is a Jacob Javits Fellow in Religion at Harvard University. He has served as former Director of Education and Conservative Rabbinic Advisor at Harvard Hillel.

David Henkin is Associate Professor in the History Department at U.C. Berkeley. He is the author of City Reading , and most recently The Postal Age . David is also a co-founder of the "Mission Minyan" a praying community based in San Francisco.

Debby Hirshman is Founder and President of DCH Consulting Services. From 1990-2003 she served as Founding Executive Director of Jewish Community Center of Manhattan.

Jeff Jacoby is an op-ed columnist for The Boston Globe . He has worked on numerous political campaigns and for several years hosted "Talk of New England," a weekly television program. He is the first recipient of the Breindel Award for Excellence in Opinion Journalism.

Idit Klein is Executive Director of Keshet, an organization working for the full inclusion of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (GLBT) Jews in all aspects of Jewish life. She is the Executive Producer of the documentary film Hineini: Coming Out in a Jewish High School.

Jennifer Krause is a "rabbi without borders" bringing an innovative mix of sacred text, contemporary experience, and popular culture to diverse audiences throughout the country. Her work and commentary have been featured in Newsweek, US News and World Report, and O, The Oprah Magazine. Her first book, The Answer: Making Sense of Life, One Question at a Time will be published in November 2007.

Adam Koffler community leader and philanthropist. He is the chairman of the Wood River Jewish Community, Sun Valley, Idaho. Mr. Koffler is a member of the World Jewish Congress Foundation Board of Directors and leads its Young Professional Diplomatic Corps initiative.

Ruth Langer is Associate Professor of Jewish Studies in the Theology Department at Boston College and Associate Director of its Center for Christian-Jewish Learning. She received rabbinic ordination in 1986 from Hebrew Union College and is the author of To Worship God Properly: Tensions between Liturgical Custom and Halakhah in Judaism.

Darren Levine is Executive Director of the Jewish Community Project. He holds rabbinic ordination from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York and is completing a doctorate in pastoral psychology. Darren is the editor of Reflection, Renewal, Return: A Contemporary Machzor for the Days of Awe.

Bernard-Henri Lévy, philosopher and writer. He is the co-founder of The Levinas Institute in Jerusalem and the author of Who Killed Daniel Pearl? His most recent work is American Vertigo: Traveling in the Footsteps of Tocqueville.

Wendy Mogel is a clinical psychologist and parent educator. Wendy is author of the national bestseller The Blessing of a Skinned Knee. She is the co-founder of the Los Angeles Association of Independent School Counselors and serves on the boards of the Center for Early Education and the Council for Spiritual and Ethical Education.

David Myers is Professor and Director at UCLA ’s Center for Jewish Studies. He has authored Re-Inventing the Jewish Past: European Jewish Intellectuals and the Zionist Return to History, and most recently, Resisting History: Historicism and its Discontents in German-Jewish Thought.

Kerry Olitzky is Executive Director of the Jewish Outreach Institute. Among his most recent publications are: The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal.

Esther Perel is an internationally known licensed marriage and family therapist. She is the author of the bestselling Mating in Captivity: Reconciling the Erotic and the Domestic . She is the host of the downtown salon in New York City, a capacity crowd forum that addresses Zeitgeist issues.

Abigail Pogrebin is the author of Stars of David: Prominent Jews Talk About Being Jewish. Abigail was a senior correspondent for Brill’s Content , a contributing writer for Talk Magazine, and a producer for Mike Wallace and Ed Bradley at "60 Minutes."

Kalman Samuels is the Founder and Director of Shalva, the internationally acclaimed association for children with special needs. Kalman with his wife Malky have won numerous awards for their work on behalf of Shalva including the President of Israel Award, The Knesset Award and the Jerusalem Foundation Prize.

Jonathan Sarna is the Joseph H. & Belle R. Braun Professor of American Jewish History at Brandeis University and Director of its Hornstein Jewish Professional Leadership Program. He has written, edited, or co-edited more than twenty books, including American Judaism: A History.

Arthur Gross-Schaefer is Professor of Business Law and Ethics at Loyola Marymount
University, Los Angeles. He has practiced both law and accounting, and served as a
congregational rabbi.

Laurie Gross-Schaefer is a nationally known artist, best known for her fiber sculptures based on the theme of the tallit. Seven of her studio's synagogue projects have received national awards from the AIA and IFRAA in the area of religious art. Laurie's work is included in museum and institutional collections as well as many synagogue and private collections.

Daniel Septimus is Editor-in Chief of MyJewishLearning.com. He hosts the 92nd Street Y's Jewish Literary Exchange. His literature column, "Reading Between the Lines," is published monthly in the Jerusalem Post.

Bambi Sheleg is a columnist for the Israeli newspaper Maariv . She is the founder of Eretz Acheret ("A Different Israel") an NGO that also publishes a magazine and website with the same name.

Yair Sheleg is an op-ed columnist and features writer for Haaretz . He is the author of The New Religious Jews – Recent Developments among Observant Jews in Israel.

Jeffrey Solomon is President of the Andrea and Charles Bronfman Philanthropies. He previously served as the Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of UJA-Federation of New York. An author of over 70 publications, he serves as adjunct associate professor at New York University and sits on numerous nonprofit and foundation boards. He is a founding trustee of the World Bank–World Faiths Development Dialogue.

Igor Timofeyev is strong Director of Immigration Policy and Special Advisor for Refugee and Asylum Affairs, Department Of Homeland Security. He previously served as associate legal officer for the president of the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia. He has clerked for the U.S. Supreme Court and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

Avi Weiss is Founder and Dean of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah. He is also Senior Rabbi of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale and is Founder and President and of AMCHA-The Coalition for Jewish Concerns. He is the author most recently of Principles of Spiritual Activism.

Leon Wieseltier is the author of Kaddish among many other books and essays on Jewish thought and Jewish history. He has been the literary editor of The New Republic since 1983.

David Wolpe strong is the Rabbi of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles, California. Previously, he taught at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York. His most recent book is strong Floating Takes Faith: Ancient Wisdom for a Modern World.

Dov S. Zakheim is Vice President of Booz Allen Hamilton, a global strategy and technology consulting firm. Dr. Zakheim served as Undersecretary of Defense from 2001-2004. He is also an ordained rabbi.

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