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Elyse Goldstein

Elyse Goldstein

As one of the first women rabbis in Canada, Elyse Goldstein has broken down barriers by founding inclusive communities for learning and prayer.

Elyse Goldstein

One of the first women rabbis in Canada, Elyse Goldstein was the first female president of either the interdenominational Toronto Board of Rabbis or Reform Rabbis of Greater Toronto.

Elyse Goldstein

Rabbi Elyse Goldstein was born in Scranton, Pennsylvania and educated at Brandeis University (B.A. summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa in 1978) and the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (M.H.L. followed by ordination in 1983). As a student, she served at Beth Or, a synagogue for the deaf in the New York City area, and she remains committed to Jewish education for the deaf. Her first rabbinic positions were as assistant rabbi at Holy Blossom Temple in Toronto and rabbi of Temple Beth David in Canton, Massachusetts. She is one of many Canadian Jewish professionals born and/or trained in the United States. In the somewhat more conservative Canadian Jewish community, where synagogue egalitarianism has developed much more slowly than in the United States, she has been a path breaker.

Canada: From Outlaw to Supreme Court Justice, 1738-2005

The positive aspect of the Canadian mosaic has been a strong Jewish community (and other communities) which nurtured traditional ethnic and religious values and benefited from the talent and energy of women and men restrained from participation in the broader society. The negative aspect has included considerable antisemitism and, especially for women, the sometimes stifling narrowness and conservatism of the community which inhibited creative and exceptional people from charting their own individual paths.

How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Elyse Goldstein." (Viewed on December 16, 2017) <https://jwa.org/taxonomy/term/22796>.

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