Rabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus installed as president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis
February 28, 2009
On February 28, 2009, Rabbi Ellen Weinberg Dreyfus was installed as president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), the world's oldest and largest group of Jewish clergy, founded in 1889. Installed at the CCAR's 120th Annual Convention in Jerusalem, Dreyfus is only the second female rabbi to be elected president of the body, which represents nearly 2,000 Reform Rabbis. She is the first female leader of a major rabbinic organization to begin her tenure in Israel.
Since its establishment, the CCAR has provided professional and personal support to Reform Rabbis of North America, offering opportunities for study, professional development, and spiritual growth.
Dreyfus, 57, is the rabbi of B'nai Yehuda Beth Sholom in Homewood, Illinois. She succeeds Rabbi Peter Knobel as president of the CCAR.
With Dreyfus's election, three of the four main associations of American rabbis had women in top leadership positions at the time. In October 2008, the Conservative movement's Rabbinical Assembly named Rabbi Julie Schonfeld its new executive vice president. Rabbi Toba Spitzer was president of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association, a post now held by Rabbi Yael Ridberg.