JTS Appoints Rabbi Joel Seltzer as New Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement  

 Seltzer was most recently executive director of Camp Ramah in the Poconos. 

February 14, 2023 — New York, NY— The Jewish Theological Seminary (JTS), one of the world’s preeminent centers of Jewish higher education, today announced that it has appointed Rabbi Joel Seltzer, a JTS alum, to serve as its Vice Chancellor for Institutional Advancement. In this role, Rabbi Seltzer will lead the institution’s development and communications efforts. As a seasoned pulpit rabbi, educator, not-for-profit executive, and fundraiser, Rabbi Seltzer brings years of experience and a unique perspective to this newly created role.  

Rabbi Seltzer will assume his new position on March 13.  

“I could not be prouder to join an institution for which I have had a deep affinity since I was a student. I’ve had the great privilege to both learn from JTS’s renowned faculty and later on work closely with JTS’s senior leadership. I am looking forward to deepening those relationships and engaging with JTS’s wide network of supporters, many of whom I already know. Together we  will further strengthen this vital Jewish institution and lead it toward a robust future,” said Rabbi Joel Seltzer, the newly appointed Vice Chancellor.  

“I’ve known Rabbi Seltzer for many years and have always been impressed by his consummate professionalism, his invigorating spirit, and his creative vision. Under his leadership, Camp Ramah in the Poconos experienced significant growth in enrollment and philanthropic support during a very challenging time. Rabbi Seltzer will bring a fresh perspective to the institution’s fundraising and communications efforts. We are excited to see how he will help JTS achieve its goals, both on campus and throughout the larger Jewish world,” said JTS Chancellor Shuly Rubin Schwartz. 

For over 10 years, Rabbi Seltzer led Camp Ramah in the Poconos, one of the many camps that comprise the Ramah camping movement. As Executive Director, he managed the day-to-day and long-term strategy of this seven-million-dollar not-for-profit organization, which includes an overnight camp, day camp, and Tikvah programs (programs for campers with various disabilities.) Previously, he served as a congregational rabbi at Temple Emanu-El in Providence, Rhode Island.  

Rabbi Seltzer earned his rabbinical ordination at JTS and his BA, Magna Cum Laude, from Florida State University. He is an author of the articles “The Things We Will Lose and “A Strange, Familiar City.” He serves on the board of the Perelman Jewish Day School in Wynnewood, PA, is a member of the Rabbinical Assembly’s Siddur Lev Shalem for Weekdays Editorial Committee, and is an avid musician.   


About The Jewish Theological Seminary 

JTS is a preeminent institution of Jewish higher education, training thoughtful, innovative leaders—rabbis, cantors, educators, lay leaders, and scholars—who strengthen our communities with a vision of Judaism that is deeply grounded in the Jewish past and thoroughly engaged with contemporary society. JTS also provides high-caliber, lifelong learning and professional development to our alumni, adult learners, and Jewish communities throughout North America. Through its Library, JTS preserves and makes accessible to students and scholars throughout the world the greatest collection of Judaica in the Western Hemisphere.