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Dr. Gary P. Zola To Receive Honorary Degree from Thomas More College

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Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Dr. Gary P. ZolaDr. Gary P. Zola will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree to be conferred by Thomas More College during a celebratory academic convocation honoring the institution’s 50th year on its current campus on Saturday, September 29, 2018, at 2:00 pm. Thomas More College’s acting president, Kathleen S. Jagger, Ph.D., MPH, said that Dr. Zola was chosen to receive the honor due his “dedication to the principles that are the foundation of our nation” and for modeling “the ethical leadership needed to address the concerns of our time.”

Dr. Zola is the Edward M. Ackerman Family Distinguished Professor of the American Jewish Experience and Reform Jewish History at HUC-JIR's Cincinnati campus, and Executive Director of The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives at HUC-JIR/Cincinnati.

Dr. Zola has played a national role in preserving and promulgating the history of American Jewry. In 2011, Dr. Zola received the first of three consecutive appointments by President Barack Obama to a key administration post as Member, United States Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad. In 2006, Zola was the first American Jewish historian and the first American rabbi to receive an appointment to the Academic Advisory Council of the congressionally recognized Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission.

“This is a high honor bestowed most generously by an institution that has earned far-reaching academic acclaim,” said Dr. Zola. “Thomas More College’s commitment to academic excellence in the liberal arts and in career preparation has borne sweet fruit—giving the world thousands of scholastically prepared and ethically-inspired leaders. I am truly humbled to have been selected to receive this distinguished tribute.”

For additional information or to arrange an interview, please contact Joyce Kamen at 513.543.8109.


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, museums, 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. www.huc.edu