HUC-JIR Presents Doctor of Divinity, honoris causa, to Darryl P. Crystal

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Rabbi David Ellenson, President of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, awarded Rabbi Darryl P. Crystal with the Doctor of Divinity at Graduation Ceremonies in New York on Thursday, April 29, 2010, at Congregation Emanu-El of the City of New York.  Rabbi Crystal was honored for 25 years of scholarly distinction as an alumnus of HUC-JIR.

Rabbi Crystal is an Interim Rabbi who guides congregations that are in transition between permanent rabbis.  Since 2004 he has served temples in Illinois, Wisconsin, and Connecticut.  He is currently working with Har Sinai Congregation, MD. 

Rabbi Crystal served North Shore Synagogue, in Syosset, NY, a 950 household congregation, as the Senior and Associate Rabbi from 1985-2003.  He created an institute for adult Jewish learning which featured speakers, classes, and study groups and a nationally recognized youth group program which at its peak had over 400 members. 

Social justice is a cornerstone of Rabbi Crystal’s rabbinate.  He has worked on issues including immigration reform, the abolition of torture, reproductive rights, and marriage equity.  He is a member of Rabbis for Human Rights, has worked with the Jewish Council on Urban Affairs, in Chicago, and was an Eisendrath Intern at the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, in Washington, DC.

Rabbi Crystal is devoted to Jewish learning.  He was ordained at HUC-JIR in 1985.  He has studied with the Pardes Institute in Jerusalem, the Institute for Jewish Spirituality, Hebrew College, in Boston, Gratz College, and teachers in the Bratslav and Chabad Hasidic communities.

A commitment to youth is a hallmark of Rabbi Crystal’s work.  He was the Chairman of the Committee on Youth for the Central Conference of American Rabbis and a member of the Union for Reform Judaism Youth Committee.  He has served on the staff at four URJ camps.


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. www.huc.edu