On October 26, Rabbi Deborah Waxman was inaugurated as the first woman president of both a seminary and a major Jewish movement—the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (RRC) and Jewish Reconstructionist Communities. The ceremony took place at the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia.
Waxman opened by chanting a verse from the book of Exodus and addressed the standing-room-only audience on the theme of redemption—both individual and collective. Contrasting the miraculous redemption from slavery in ancient Egypt with post-enlightenment thinking, she explored how modern Jewscan embrace modernity and still maintain a religious perspective. “Reconstructionist Jews don’t seek to resolve that tension between the miraculous and modern,” she said, “We revel in it.” To watch inauguration videos, peruse the media coverage or read Rabbi Waxman’s vision statement, please click here.