Michael Zeldin, Ph.D.

Professor Emeritus of Jewish Education

Contact Information

school/program: School of Education
academic field: Jewish Education
campus: Los Angeles

Dr. Michael Zeldin is Professor Emeritus of Jewish Education at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. Before retiring, he was Senior National Director of the (then) Schools of Education, Director of the Rhea Hirsch School of Education, Project Leader for the Jim Joseph Foundation Educative Initiative, and Founding Director of DeLeT – Day School Leadership through Teaching. In addition to founding DeLeT, he led the team that was responsible for the creation of HUC-JIR’s Executive M.A. Program in Jewish Education (E.M.A.), HUC-JIR’s pioneering program of hybrid professional learning for experienced educators. 

Dr. Zeldin’s publications and scholarship focus on Reform Jewish day schools and summer camps, mentoring in Jewish professional life, and the leadership practice of Managing Enduring Dilemmas. He is co-editor (with Sara S. Lee) and lead author of Touching the Future: Mentoring and the Jewish Professional. After leading the re-launch of the Journal of Jewish Education, the premier academic and scholarly journal in the field of Jewish education, he served as the journal’s Senior Editor for more than a decade.

He has been called “the intellectual father of Reform Jewish day schools.” He led a cadre of Reform and community day schools in becoming schools guided by Jewish values as part of the Jewish Day Schools for the 21st Century project. In addition, for over four decades, he has conducted workshops and seminars for Jewish educational leaders on topics ranging from change management to curriculum integration, from reflective practice to managing enduring dilemmas.

In his role as Professor Emeritus, he teaches courses on Jewish Educational Leadership in both the M.Ed.L. program and the Executive M.A. Program. He is on the academic faculty of the iFellows Masters Concentration in Israel Education at the iCenter for Israel Education and the mentoring faculty of the Certificate Program in Experiential Jewish Education at the George Washington University. Earlier in his career he served as Adjunct Visiting Faculty at the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University.

Dr. Zeldin is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of California, Berkeley. He received a Master of Arts in Hebrew Education from HUC-JIR and a Ph.D. in Social and Philosophical Foundations of Education from the University of Southern California.

Managing Enduring Dilemmas in Jewish Education

Leading with Gravitas

Martin Buber’s View of Integrity

Leading with Empathy: The Views of Rebbi Edwin Friedman, Daniel Goleeman and Brene Brown

Leading with Integrity

Leading Amidst Complexity

Jewish Educational Leadership