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News at HUC-JIR
Rabbi David Ellenson Announces Retirement of Dr. Norman Cohen as Provost
Since 1995, Norman has revitalized the faculty through the appointments of over 20 emerging scholars, of whom half are women, thereby fostering an egalitarian faculty representative of the values of the Reform Movement. He has nurtured the faculty's scholarly development and their integration, across the campuses, through biennial faculty retreats and the use of new technology that has strengthened partnership in teaching areas and introduced the innovation of team-taught courses in our e-classrooms. He has led task forces to advance HUC-JIR's alumni relations, student assessment, and academic programs, resulting in a rabbinical core curriculum, with emphasis on leadership training and social responsibility, that stands as a model for all other academic programs and for our peer institutions.

An internationally recognized scholar of Midrash, Dr. Cohen has lectured and written extensively for learned and popular audiences. Among his publications are Self, Struggle & Change: Family Conflict Stories in Genesis and their Healing Insights for our Lives, Voices from Genesis: Guiding us through the Stages of Life, The Way into Torah, Hineini in our Lives, and, most recently, Moses and the Journey to Leadership; Timeless Lessons of Effective Management from the Bible and Today's Leaders, all published by Jewish Lights. He was a participant in Bill Moyers' Genesis: A Living Conversation series on PBS.
HUC-JIR Council of Alumni Associations Meets in New York
The HUC-JIR Council of Alumni Associations met for two days at the New York campus on November 18-19, 2008. The Council discussed alumni affairs, recruitment, and alumni communications. Council members met with HUC-JIR Board Chair Barbara Friedman and HUC-JIR President Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D.
Council of Alumni Associations Holds Webinar with Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D.
The HUC-JIR Council of Alumni Associations held a live webinar with Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D., President of HUC-JIR on December 3, 2008. Rabbinical, Cantorial, Education, Graduate, and Communal Service alumni were able to see and hear Rabbi Ellenson speak as well as email questions to him before and during the 60 minute session, where he answered them in live-time.
Arbit Blatas Honored with Reception and Program at HUC-JIR/NY
Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph.D., President of HUC-JIR, welcomed hundreds of dignitaries, guests, and HUC-JIR faculty, staff, and students to HUC-JIR/NY on Wednesday, November 19, 2008, for a celebration of the hundredth anniversary of artist Arbit Blatas's birth. Abraham H. Foxman, National Director of the ADL, delivered the keynote address, and Jean Bloch Rosensaft, Director of the HUC-JIR Museum in New York, read greetings from New York Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg. Ambassador Jonas Paslaukas, Consul General of the Republic of Lithuania in New York, presented the Commander Cross of the Order of Merit of Lithuania to Arbit Blatas and Regina Resnik, Blatas's widow.
Thanksgiving at HUC-JIR/ Jerusalem
Rabbinical, cantorial, and education students in the HUC-JIR Year-in-Israel program celebrated Thanksgiving together as a community on the Jerusalem campus. Students shared their thoughts about things they are thankful for, donated money to support the HUC-JIR Soup Kitchen in New York, collected dried goods for a soup kitchen in Jerusalem, and debated the meaning of a section of the Birkat Hamazon.
Spotlight on HUC-JIR's Programs and
Research Resources
Moving Pictures: In his Late Artworks, Arbit Blatas Took on the Holocaust - Nextbook
An exhibition at HUC-JIR celebrating the centenary of Blatas's birth is currently on view-bringing together, for the first time, major examples from every period of his long career. He died in 1999, at 90. Many museums dedicated to the Holocaust focus their art exhibits on work by victims and survivors, avoiding curatorial judgment and treating these expressions as testimony. This earnest approach protects the legacy of the calamity but tends to discount artistic merit and leave little room for other worthy contributions, no matter their integrity or skill. As an accomplished, masterful artist-and as a witness who escaped the maelstrom-Blatas brings a necessary complexity.
WRJ Study Guide for Parashah Vayigash Now Available Online
Since the publication in December 2007 of The Torah: A Women's Commentary, Women of Reform Judaism, along with Commentary Editors Dr. Tamara Eskenazi, Dr. Rabbi Andrea Weiss, and Rabbi Hara Person, has been working to provide a study program to accompany this historic work.
Unveiling the Past: the Incirli Trilingual Inscription - ABZU
Professor Bruce Zuckerman of USC and Professor Stephen Kaufman of HUC-JIR/Cincinnati are currently working on a decipherment project to figure out what the Phoenician text on the stele says.
HUC-JIR in the News
American Jewry's Challenges: Impact, Education, Leadership - Jewish News Weekly
Coverage of Rabbi Ellenson's participation in the United Jewish Communities General Assembly in Jerusalem, discussing conversion complexity.
Historic Partnership Between Two Cincinnati Colleges - WCPO ABC 9
Xavier University, a Jesuit, Catholic university, and HUC-JIR a Reform Jewish Seminary, are creating a Jewish and Interfaith Studies Program that will be offered to students at both institutions. This is the first partnership of its kind.
Jewish Communal Service as a Calling (PDF) - JCSA
Richard A. Siegel, Interim Director, School of Jewish Communal Service at HUC-JIR LA, writes, "We - those of us lucky enough to be living right now and right here in this extraordinary moment in Jewish history - have the opportunity to expand and enlarge the Jewish experience, shaped and tagged by our own world view, values, attitudes and practices."
Feminist Scholar Probes New Visions - New Jersey Jewish News
According to a scholar at HUC-JIR, as women found a foothold in the larger literary world and in Jewish life over the last century, a reinterpretation of these texts emerged, colored by a feminist viewpoint. Dr. Wendy Zierler Delivered the Dr. Louis Schrager Memorial Lecture.
Women's Torah Commentary Provides Missing Voices - Cleveland Jewish News
Its co-editor, Dr. Tamara Cohn Eskenazi, Professor of Bible at HUC-JIR, was the featured guest at the recent celebration of Anshe Chesed Fairmount Temple Sisterhood's 100th anniversary.
Upcoming Events at HUC-JIR
Richard J. Scheuer, z"l, Chairman Emeritus of HUC-JIR, to be Honored at Memorial Tribute Lecture Monday, December 15 at HUC-JIR/NY
Dr. Nili Fox, HUC-JIR Associate Professor of Bible, will lecture on "Revealing Biblical Dan: A Tribute to Richard Scheuer," Monday, December 15, 2008, at Noon, at HUC-JIR/NY. Scheuer, Chairman Emeritus of HUC-JIR, died November 7, 2008 at the age of 91 years.
Rabbi Donniel Hartman to Present Dr. Fritz Bamberger Memorial Lecture: 'The New Narratives of Modern Israel' at HUC-JIR/NY.
Rabbi Dr. Donniel Hartman, Co-Director of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem, will present the 2008-2009 Dr. Fritz Bamberger Memorial Lecture on Wednesday, December 10, 2008 at 6:30 p.m.
HUC-JIR School of Sacred Music to Perform Concert in New York
The Choir of the School of Sacred Music will perform a concert: Music for Shabbat and Hanukkah, Directed by Pedro d'Aquino, with Shinae Kim on piano, Sunday, December 7, 2008, 3:00 p.m. at HUC-JIR/NY. Admission is $10/$8 for Students.
HUC-JIR/NY Soup Kitchen Serves Community for 20 Years; Celebrates with Beit Cafe Fundraiser December 11, 2008
The HUC-JIR Soup Kitchen Beit Cafe, marking the soup kitchen's 20th anniversary, will take place on December 11, 2008. The Soup Kitchen was created in 1988 in response to HUC-JIR students' desire to help the community that surrounded them.
Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is the nation's oldest institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and communal service professionals and offers graduate and post-graduate degree programs for scholars of all faiths. With campuses in Cincinnati, Los Angeles, New York, and Jerusalem, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise renowned library, archive, and museum collections, the American Jewish Archives, biblical archaeology excavations, research centers and institutes, and academic publications. HUC-JIR invites the community to an array of cultural and educational programs that illuminate Jewish history, culture, and contemporary creativity, and foster interfaith and multi-ethnic understanding. Visit us at

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