Firsts

Women in Congress: The Good News and the Bad

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Women Belong in Senate Photo

Ten years after the election that resulted in a doubling of the number of women in Congress, the old record of 90 women was broken on Tuesday. Five newcomers will join 15 returning female senators — including two Jewish women from California  — for an all-time high of 20, and there will be at least 77 women in the House (a few races are still undecided) when the 113th Congress convenes in January.

Julie Rosewald: America's first woman cantor

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Julie Rosenwald

She wrote a book. She was an actress. She sang opera. She became a professor. She toured the world by herself. She paid her own way. She was a musical superstar.

Jill Abramson ascends to top spot at the New York Times

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The New York Times announced a change last week in its managerial lineup when current executive editor Bill Keller said he would retire and managing editor Jill Abramson would take his placep in the paper's to spot.

Alysa Stanton, First Black Female Rabbi, Will Leave N.C. Congregation

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Rabbi Alysa Stanton with Gail Reimer

Alysa Stanton, who made headlines when she became the country’s first black woman rabbi, will be leaving her Greenville, N.C. pulpit — after the congregation that hired her less than two years ago decided not to renew her contract. Stanton said the decision to leave was not hers, and that she fully intends to serve out the duration of her contract, which expires July 31, 2011.

Lessons from "A Lay Sermon by a Young Lady"

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Frank, Ray - still image [media]

One hundred and twenty years ago today, Ray Frank delivered a historic sermon on what was the first night of Rosh Hashanah in Spokane, Washington. Ray Frank, featured in JWA's Women of Valor exhibit, is one of those "complicated" heroines.

Celebrating Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, the first woman Reconstructionalist rabbi

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Thirty-six years ago today, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso was ordained as the first female Reconstructionist rabbi by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (RRC) in Philadelphia on May 19, 1974.

Our first Jewish Congresswoman

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Eighty-five years ago today, Florence Prag Kahn became the first Jewish woman elected to the United States Congress, and only the fifth woman to ever serve in that body.

The decade in Jewish women's history

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Since we celebrated the beginning of a new millenium, Jewish women have continued to make important "firsts" in a variety of fields, and have made their voices heard in the Jewish community, in American culture and politics, and in forums around the world.  Here are just some of the important events of this decade in Jewish women's history.  Please do add other important events and accomplishments in the comments.

Happy New Year everyone!

The decade's best Jewish athlete?

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Last week the Jewish Chronicle asked us to nominate the most important Jewish person in sports over the last decade.  They suggested Israeli footballer Yossi Benayoun, European judo champion Arik Ze’evi, tennis star Andy Ram, and American swimmer Jason Lezak.  Tablet magazine picked up on the story, and added Red Sox first baseman Kevin Youkilis to the list. Excuse me, but where are the Jewish women athletes? Have they been invisible for the past ten years?  Considering the Associated Press' recent nomination of two horses for "Female Athlete of the Year," maybe so.

Amy in the sky

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Last week we got an unexpected call from a woman named Amy Sheridan, the first American Jewish woman pilot in the U.S. Army.

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