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Rabbi Saul Berman

Professor of Jewish Studies, Yeshiva University

Adjunct Professor of Law, Columbia Law School

Rabbi Saul J. Berman was born and raised in the Bed-Stuy neighborhood of Brooklyn, NY. He was ordained at Yeshiva University, from which he also received a B.A. and an M.H.L. He completed a degree in law, a J.D., at New York University Law School, and an M.A. in Political Science at the University of California at Berkeley. He did advanced studies in Jewish Law at Hebrew University and Tel Aviv University Law Schools.

He was Rabbi in Berkeley CA (1963-1969), Brookline, MA (1969-1971) and at Lincoln Square Synagogue in Manhattan (1984-1990.) He was an early leader in the Soviet Jewry movement in the 1960s and 1970s. In March 1965 he participated in voter registration efforts in Selma, Alabama and was twice arrested just prior to the march from Selma to Montgomery.

From 1971 until 1984 he served as Chair of the Department of Jewish Studies at Stern College for Women of Yeshiva University, which grew into the largest Undergraduate academic Department of Jewish Studies in the U.S.  He continued since 1984 to serve as Professor of Jewish Studies at Stern College where he teaches Jewish Law related to medical ethics, contemporary social and political issues, the status of women, and Liturgy.

Since 1990, Rabbi Berman serves also as an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University School of Law, as the Nathan and Rose Rotter Fellow in Talmudic Law, teaching seminars in Jewish Law. From 1997 until 2007 he also served as Director of Edah, an advocacy organization for Modern Orthodox Judaism, and in 2009-2010 he was an Inaugural Fellow of the Tikvah Center for Law and Jewish Civilization at NYU Law School.

Rabbi Berman is the author of many articles and of a book entitled “Boundaries of Loyalty: Testimony Against Fellow Jews in Non-Jewish Courts.” He and his wife, Shellee, have four children, plus in-law children, and ten grandchildren, three living in Israel and seven living in the New York area.