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Amy Eilberg

Amy Eilberg

The first woman rabbi ordained by the Conservative Movement, Amy Eilberg forged her own path as a chaplain and pastoral counselor.

Amy Eilberg

Rabbi Amy Eilberg is the first woman ordained as a Conservative rabbi by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. She was a co-founder of the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center, where she directed the Jewish Hospice Care Program.

Celebrating the First Lights of Women Rabbis

On a cold New England night, as the first flurries of the season began to fall, members of the Jewish community in Boston piled into the sanctuary at Temple Reyim to kindle the lights of Hanukkah and celebrate four remarkable Jewish women. Sally Priesand, Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, Amy Eilberg, and Sara Hurwitz, the first-ordained North American Reform, Reconstructionist, and Conservative women rabbis and Open Orthodox rabba, respectively, gathered together for the first time, in an event cosponsored by the Jewish Women’s Archive, to share their inspirational stories, to celebrate the progress that has been made across the Jewish movements, and to discuss what still needs to be done.

JTS Faculty Senate votes to admit women

October 24, 1983

The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS) faculty senate voted to allow women admission to the JTS Rabbinical School.

Amy Eilberg ordained as first female Conservative rabbi

May 12, 1985

Amy Eilberg became the first woman ordained as a Conservative Rabbi at the Jewish Theological Seminary's commencement exercises in New York City.

Reform Judaism in the United States

Leaders of Reform Judaism in the United States have often celebrated their movement’s role in emancipating women from the many restrictions that Judaism has traditionally imposed upon their ability to participate and lead public worship.

Rabbis in the United States

Jewish women’s recent entrance to the brotherhood of the rabbinate masks a lengthy history of the question of women’s ordination.

Jewish Feminism in the United States

Challenging all varieties of American Judaism, feminism has been a powerful force for popular Jewish religious revival. Of America’s four Jewish denominations, all but the Orthodox have accepted women as rabbis and cantors.

Amy Eilberg

On May 12, 1985 Amy Eilberg became the first woman ordained by the Conservative movement.

Conservative Judaism in the United States

Women have played a pivotal role in Conservative Judaism throughout the twentieth century and have been instrumental on both the grass-roots and national levels in propelling the Conservative Movement to confront essential issues including Jewish education, gender equality and religious leadership. The Conservative Movement’s attention over the decades to issues such as the religious education of Jewish girls, the status of the ]agunah (deserted wife), equal participation of women in ritual and the ordination of women has helped to shape the self-definition of Conservative Judaism and its maturation as a distinct denomination.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Amy Eilberg." (Viewed on September 18, 2014) <http://jwa.org/taxonomy/term/17954>.

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