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Tamara Cohn Eskenazi

For Tamara Cohn Eskenazi, editor of The Torah: A Women’s Commentary, becoming a rabbi was the culmination of a lifelong examination of the intersection of women and faith. Eskenazi earned her bachelor’s degree and PhD while raising five children and served both on the faculty of the University of Denver and as director of the Institute of Interfaith Studies. She also cofounded Denver’s Jewish Women’s Resource Center. In 1990 she became the first female tenure-track professor in the rabbinical school at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion since its founding in 1875, and is now the Effie Wise Ochs Professor of Biblical Literature and History. Exploring a fuller expression of her long-term commitment to Judaism, Eskenazi embarked on rabbinical training in 1995. She was ordained as a rabbi by HUC–JIR in 2013. As editor of The Torah: A Women’s Commentary (2008), she helped recover the stories of women mentioned throughout the Bible and analyzed them with the scholarly focus usually reserved for the patriarchs and other biblical men; the book won the Jewish Book of the Year Award from the National Jewish Book Council. Eskenazi was also honored with the 2011 National Jewish Book Award in Women’s Studies for co-authoring the JPS Bible Commentary: Ruth.

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Tamara Cohn Eskenazi
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Rabbi Tamara Cohn Eskenazi, photo courtesy of Rabbi Eskenazi.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Tamara Cohn Eskenazi." (Viewed on December 18, 2018) <>.


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