Rabbi Matthew L. Berkowitz is the director of Israel Programs for The Jewish Theological Seminary and cofounder of Kol Ha-Ot, a new Jerusalem-based venture devoted to exploring the arts and Jewish learning. For 10 years (1999–2009), he served as the JTS senior rabbinic fellow, organizing substantive adult learning throughout Florida and beyond. He is a member of the Wexner Heritage Program faculty.
Rabbi Berkowitz completed his undergraduate work in International Relations and Middle East Studies, summa cum laude, at Colgate University. While in Israel, he studied at the Pardes and Schechter institutes of Jewish Studies. Rabbi Berkowitz was ordained by The Rabbinical School of JTS in 1999 and is a Wexner Graduate Fellow alumnus.
An accomplished artist, Rabbi Berkowitz was formally trained in Jewish scribal art in Jerusalem. He completed the writing of Megillat Esther, the illumination of several ketubbot (marriage contracts), and a limited-edition artist portfolio called Passover Landscapes: Illuminations on the Exodus, which was later acquired by Yale University and then exhibited at Yeshiva University Museum (April 2006). It is now on permanent exhibit at JTS. Recently, he studied illustration and oil painting at the Jerusalem Studio School.
Rabbi Berkowitz resides in Jerusalem and became an oleh (new Israeli citizen) on August 27, 2009. He is married to Rabbi Miriam Berkowitz and they have three children: Adir, Rachel, and Shira.