HUC-JIR Announces the Class of 2020 / 5780 - Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion
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HUC-JIR Announces the Class of 2020 / 5780

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Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), North America’s premier institution of Jewish higher education and the center for professional leadership development of Reform Judaism, is privilged to bestow 145 degrees and certificates on the Class of 2020's cadre of new Jewish professional leaders for the Reform Movement, the Jewish People, and the larger world.

Due to the COVID-19 crisis, Ordination Ceremonies have been postponed for a time to be determined in the future. Students receiving earned graduate degrees and distinguished communal and civic leaders receiving honorary degrees and the Roger E. Joseph will be invited to participate in Graduation Ceremonies in 2021.

The College-Institute will award 145 degrees and certificates:

29 rabbis consecreated in Cincinnati, Los Angeles, and New York;
7 cantors consecreated in New York;
1 Doctor of Philosophy degree in Judaic, Hebraic, and Cognate Studies;
4 Doctor of Ministry degrees;
20 Master of Arts degrees in Hebrew Letters;
13 Master of Arts degrees in Hebrew Literature;
7 Master of Arts degrees in Sacred Music;
7 Master of Arts degrees in Jewish Education;
2 Master of Arts degrees in Jewish Studies;
2 Master of Arts degrees in Religious Education;
14 Master of Arts degrees in Religious Education, Executive Program;
10 Master of Arts degrees in Jewish Nonprofit Management;
1 Master of Philosophy degrees in Judaic, Hebraic, and Cognate Studies;
5 Master of Science in Organizational Leadership and Innovation; 
4 Certificates in Jewish Organizational Leadership;
7 Master of Sacred Music degrees; and
12 Sugiyot Chayim Certificates for The Blaustein Center for Spiritual Counseling.

All degrees granted upon completion of all requirements.

 

Honorary Degrees

(To be presented at 2021 Graduation Ceremonies)

Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa / New York
Amy Gutmann, Ph.D., President, University of Pennsylvania; Christopher H. Browne Distinguished Professor of Political Science in the School of Arts and Sciences; Professor of Communication in the Annenberg School for Communication

Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa / Los Angeles
Toni Reinis, Co-founder of SOVA; Legislation and Public Policy Advocate, California Homeless and Housing Coalition; Co-founder and Former Executive Director of New Directions, Inc.

Doctors of Humane Letters, honoris causa / Cincinnati
Eric Foner, Ph.D., DeWitt Clinton Professor Emeritus of History, Columbia University
Rabbi Samuel K. Joseph, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus, HUC-JIR/Cincinnati 

Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa / Jerusalem

Sidra DeKoven Ezrahi, Ph.D., Director Emeritus, Institute for Contemporary Jewry, The Hebrew University

 

Roger E. Joseph Prize

(To be presented at 2021 Ordination Ceremony)

Sara J. Bloomfield, Director, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

 

Rabbinical Class of 2020

(Ordination Ceremony postponed due to COVID-19)

JERUSALEM

(Presented November 14, 2019)

David Barak-Gorodetsky
Mori (Mordechai) Li-Dar
Binyamin Daniel Minich
Dahlia Shaham
Devorah Shoua-Haim
Olya Weinstein
Shlomo Yehuda Zagman 

NEW YORK

Sarah Melissa Berman
Deena Joy Gottlieb
Thalia Naomi Halpert Rodis
Jessica Leah Kerman
Jennifer Elizabeth Mager
Rena Singer

LOS ANGELES

Liora Esther Alban
Meir C. Bargeron
Noah A.L. Diamondstein
Calvin Sebastian Dox-DaCosta
Nora Elizabeth E. Feinstein
Daniel Moss Freedman
Sarah Elizabeth Rosenbaum 

CINCINNATI

Benjamin A. Altshuler
Benjamin Geoffrey Azriel
Yael K. Dadoun
Alicia Harris
Robert Aaron Gleisser
Natalie Louise Shribman
Caroline Rachel Sim
Michael Ephraim Weiss
Austin Maxwell Zoot

 

Cantorial Class of 2020

NEW YORK

(Ordination Ceremony postponed due to COVID-19)

Tobias B. Glaser
Alexandra Marie Kurland
Amelia Lavranchuk
Meara Ilene Lebovitz
Danielle Lea Rodnizki
Emily Clare Simkin
Robert David Wittner

Graduation

(Degree recipients will be invited to participate in 2021 Graduation Ceremonies)

NEW YORK

Interfaith Doctor of Ministry in Pastoral Care

Matthew J. Grimes
Michele Ellise Lenke
Marcos Antonio Miranda
Evan Lee Zazula

Master of Arts in Hebrew Literature

Emily Rebecca Aronson
Jeffrey Alan Dreifus
Joshua Aaron Gischner
Vanessa Morgan Harper
Janet Shelley Katz
Erin Binder Kurland
Ariel Dina Milan-Polisar
Preston Dean Neimeiser
Andrew Samuel Oberstein
Rachael Ann Nicole Pass
Kylynn Guenevere Mary Perdue-Bronson
Zachary Allan Plesent
Danielle Erica Weisbrot

Master of Arts in Religious Education

Amelia Lavranchuk
Daniel Dolph Reichenbach

Master of Arts in Religious Education, Executive Program

Miriam S. Berk
Sarah Michal DeWoskin
Roberta Franco Glick
Maxwell Richmon Hendrix
Amy Beth Hertz
Benjamin David Mazur
Deborah L. Morin
Wendy D. Pein
David Jonathan Perolman
Eran Rosenberg
Heather Brooke Rosenthal
Jennifer Cheryl Weiner
Susan B. Wexler
Mia Suzanne Zimman

Master of Sacred Music

Olivia Paige Brodsky
Shani Cohen
David Warren Fair
Daniel Joseph Geigerman
Ilana Kate Goldman
Stefano Lorenzo Iacono
Lianna Sage Mendelson 

LOS ANGELES

Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters

Megan Ilana Brumer
Elias Luis Ivone Chajet
Scott Ethan Goldberg
Esther Sarah Jilovsky
Sarah Alicia Moody
Rachel Ann Rothstein
Ariel Ezekiel Zitny
Sofia Louisa Zway

Master of Arts in Jewish Education

Michelle Erin Blumenthal
Tamara Ellyse Cohen
Sasha Dominguez
Erin Samantha Levine
Andrea Rose McNellis
Elana Sara Rabishaw
Brett Charles Weisman

Master of Arts in Jewish Nonprofit Management

Tamara Ellyse Cohen
Sasha Dominguez
Maryn Shelby Gordon
Hannah Evelyn Leib
Erin Samantha Levine
Andrea Rose McNellis
Taylor Aryn Millman
Elliana Frieda Rao
Rebecca Beryl Sachs
Aviva Chana Symons

Master of Science in Organizational Leadership and Innovation

Edden Leigh Dembsky
Monica Rachael Edelman
Michael Craig Gropper
Spencer Todd Hirsch
Joel Ross Swedlove

Certificate in Jewish Organizational Leadership

Michelle Erin Blumenthal
Daniel Moss Freedman
Scott Ethan Goldberg
Will Hall 

CINCINNATI

Doctor of Philosophy in Judaic, Hebraic, and Cognate Studies

John C. Johnson

Master of Philosophy in Judaic, Hebraic, and Cognate Studies

Chelsea Ann Simon

Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters

Jason Samuel Cook
Libby Louise Fisher
Deborah Samantha Novak Goldberg
William Paxton Hall, Jr.
Jonathan Lee Jackson
Ross Zadoc Levy
Zoe Mira McCoon
Shmuel Polin
Taylor Ann Poslosky
Samantha Frances Schauvaney
Annalisa Grimes Stryer
Yair S. Walton

Master of Arts in Jewish Studies

Amichai Levy
Devin G. Olachea

 

HONORING OUR ALUMNI

(Honorary degrees to be presented at 2021 Graduation Ceremonies)

HUC-JIR alumni were awarded honorary Doctorates of Divinity, Music, Jewish Religious Education, and Jewish Nonprofit Management, as well as the Graduate Medallion, in recognition of their 25 years of distinguished professional service.

Rabbinical Alumni – Doctor of Divinity, honoris causa

Camille Shira Angel
Leslie Paulette Bergson
Mark Bloom
Jeffrey Scott Clopper
Sandra J. Cohen
Heidi Barron Coretz
Stacia Deutsch
James E. Egolf
Jennifer B. Flatté
Lisa S. Greene
Johanna Michelle Hershenson
Shira H. Joseph
Stephen Kahn
Elliott Adam Kleinman
Marc Aaron Kline
Benjamin Martin Levy
Valerie Lieber
Steven Stark Lowenstein
Sharon Young Marcus
Barbara Metzinger
Kenneth Daniel Milhander
Michael Lawrence Moskowitz
Andrew Marc Paley
Stephen B. Roberts
Rachel Sabath Beit-Halachmi
Judith Schindler
Burt E. Schuman
Susan Silverman
Joel Lee Sisenwine
Richard Michael Steinberg
Robyn Hedy Tsesarsky
Amy Coben Weiss
Richard Winer
Stephanie Wolfe

Debbie Friedman School of Sacred Music Cantorial Alumni – Doctor of Music, honoris causa

Jennifer R. Bern-Vogel
Joel Matthew Colman
Erik Lee Contzius
Ilene Keys
Rogerio F. Marx
Judith A. Seplowin 

School of Education Alumni - Doctor of Jewish Religious Education, honoris causa

Susan Ellen Cosden, RJE
Andrea B. Gardenhour
Aviva Miriam Levin, RJE
Amy Grossblatt Pessah  

Zelikow School of Jewish Nonprofit Management Alumni – Doctor of Jewish Nonprofit Management, honoris causa

Mindee Stein Fredman
Aaron Benjamin Levinson
Andrea Milens
Lee Bryant Rosenfield

Pines School of Graduate Studies Medallion 

Stephen J. Andrews


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 leaders to serve 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