Dr. Jonathan Sarna to Discuss “The Economic Meltdown and the Future of the Jewish Community” at JTS

Press Contact: Nina Jacobson
Office: (212) 678-8950
Email: nijacobson@jtsa.edu

January 13, 2010, New York, NY

Jonathan SarnaDr. Jonathan Sarna, the Joseph H. and Belle R. Braun Professor of American Jewish History, Brandeis University, will give the annual Gerson D. Cohen Memorial Lecture on Thursday, February 4, at 7:30 p.m. at The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS), 3080 Broadway (corner 122nd Street), New York City.

The Great Recession has followed almost twenty years of unprecedented economic advancement, from which Jews greatly benefited. The collapse of the stock market and various financial frauds and scandals, including the notorious Bernard Madoff Ponzi scheme, have destroyed a good deal of this new Jewish wealth.

How will this impact Jewish organizations and the Jewish community? Why will some institutions thrive in the new era, while others perish? What can we learn from how the Jewish community was affected by the Great Depression of the 1930s? Dr. Sarna’s lecture, entitled “The Economic Meltdown and the Future of the Jewish Community,” will address these issues.

Dr. Sarna is a leading commentator on American Jewish history, religion, and life. He has written, edited, or co-edited more than twenty books, including the new A Time to Every Purpose: Letters to a Young Jew. Dr. Sarna is best known for the acclaimed American Judaism: A History. Winner of the Jewish Book Council’s 2004 Jewish Book of the Year Award, this work has been praised as being “the single best description of American Judaism during its 350 years on American soil.”

The evening will also include a special memorial tribute to JTS alumni Rabbi Judah Nadich (z"l) and his wife, Hadassah Ribalow Nadich (z”l). Rabbi Nadich, adviser on Jewish affairs to General Dwight D. Eisenhower (thirty-fourth president of the United States); spiritual leader of Manhattan’s Park Avenue Synagogue for thirty years; scholar and author; past president of the Rabbinical Assembly; and a key leader in the Conservative Movement passed away in 2007. His beloved wife, Hadassah, former executive secretary of the Rabbinical Assembly and committed Hebraist, educator, writer, role model to her community, and devoted partner with her husband in their life's work, passed away in 2008.

The annual Gerson D. Cohen Memorial Lecture was established in 1993 by the Honorable Howard M. Holtzmann, honorary chairman of the JTS Board of Trustees, as a tribute to the late Gerson D. Cohen, who served as chancellor of JTS from 1972 to 1986.

Arrangements for Dr. Jonathan Sarna were made through the B’nai B’rith Lecture Bureau.
Admission is free, but reservations are required. To reserve your seat, email publicevents@jtsa.edu or call (212) 280-6093.