HUC-JIR Alumni Selected to Join UJA-Federation of New York Rabbinic Fellowship

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Five alumni of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR) have been selected to join the 2016-2017 cohort of the UJA-Federation of New York Rabbinic Fellowship for Visionary Leaders. UJA-Federation of New York created the Fellowship for mid-career rabbis to give voice to their rabbinic visions as they expand their practical toolkit to lead a thriving congregation amidst a changing landscape. 

HUC-JIR alumni include: 

  • Rabbi Marcus Burstein, New York '99, Congregation Shir Shalom, Ridgefield, CT
  • Rabbi Howard Goldsmith, New York '07, Congregation Emanu-El of Westchester, NY
  • Rabbi Andrew Gordon, New York '08, Temple Sinai of Roslyn, NY
  • Rabbi Alysa Mendelson Graf, New York '04, Port Jewish Center, Port Washington, NY
  • Rabbi Darren Levine, New York '03, Tamid: The Downtown Synagogue

Rabbi Aaron D. Panken, Ph.D., HUC-JIR President, stated, "We are proud of our rabbinical alumni who will be participating in this important fellowship and are grateful to UJA-Federation of New York for its vision in engaging mid-career rabbis of all denominations to study together and further hone their leadership development."

"One of the key attributes of thriving synagogues is visionary rabbinic leadership," writes UJA-Federation of New York. "In order to be visionary leaders, rabbis must possess a voice deeply rooted in Jewish wisdom, values, and learning; the ability to lead with authentic vision; leadership and management skills appropriate to the complexity of synagogue life; a strong peer network; and a sense of connectedness to the broader landscape of both synagogue and Jewish communal life in their local community."


Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding.