Deborah Waxman

In 2014, Rabbi Deborah Waxman became the first woman (and first lesbian) to simultaneously lead both a seminary and a congregational organization as head of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and the Jewish Reconstructionist Communities. After studying religion at Columbia, Waxman was ordained by RRC in 1999 and earned a PhD in American Jewish history at Temple University in 2010. She began teaching at RRC in 2002 and published numerous articles on Jewish history and women in Judaism. In 2003 she became Vice President for Governance of RRC and planned the successful overhaul of the organization, merging the congregational arm and the seminary into one organization in 2012. She then became the leader of the new organization in 2014 and has viewed her role as strengthening the Reconstructionist movement and helping promote social justice and inclusion, creating positions for a vice president of community engagement and director of Israel engagement.

More on Deborah Waxman


Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.

Rabbi Deborah Waxman in 2013.

Image courtesy of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College via Wikimedia Commons.

Date of Birth

West Hartford, CT
United States

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Deborah Waxman." (Viewed on January 28, 2020) <>.


Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

The JWA Podcast

Can We Talk?

listen now

Get JWA in your inbox