Rabbi Barry Kornblau

Young Israel of Hollis Hills-Windsor Park, Queens, NY

Mar 14, 2014

Barry Kornblau received a B.A. in music theory and composition from Yale University in 1988 and worked until 1995 on Wall Street as a computer programmer and fixed income analyst, primarily at Goldman Sachs & Co. At that point, he decided to enter the rabbinate and began his ordination (semicha) studies at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary at Yeshiva University. In 1996-97, he lived with his family in Alon Shvut, Israel while studying at Yeshivat Har Etzion, under the leadership of Rav Yehuda Amital zt”l and Rav Aharon Lichtenstein zt”l.

After receiving semicha from RIETS in 2001, Rabbi Kornblau served as rabbi of Congregation Kodimoh, in Springfield, MA. He is proud of having successfully forged a consensus among all of the local Reform, Conservative, Reconstructionist, and Orthodox rabbis in Springfield to oppose the opening of the local Jewish Community Center on Shabbat.

Since 2003, he has served as rabbi of the Young Israel of Hollis Hills-Windsor Park, in Bayside, Queens, NY. He feels that it is a special honor to serve a congregation with many Holocaust survivors in its ranks, and which has sent so many of its sons and daughters on aliyah over the years. He is pleased to have led his congregation to join the Orthodox Union shortly after his arrival.

From 2005-2017, Rabbi Kornblau served on the staff of the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA) in Manhattan, NY. He considers it a great honor and privilege to have advanced the interests of the rabbinate and the Jewish people, and gotten to know and serve 1000 colleagues, from diverse backgrounds, in the United States, Israel, Canada, and beyond. Responsibilities included: helping to guide the organization as a whole as well as its committees; organizing annual conventions; mentoring colleagues; overseeing standards and procedures for membership applicants; helping to formulate internal and public positions and policies; responding to sensitive inquiries from member rabbis, other Jewish organizations, and the general public; membership communications, and more.

Rabbi Kornblau often considers halacha and Jewish thought in light of their historical development and their contemporary cultural and religious contexts. He has published original essays on a variety of Torah topics in different venues over the years, including Bikkurim and Simcha, Halachic Jews and Modern Time, A New Take on the Old Problem of Jewish Identity, Priestly Temptation, Elegy for a Tree, and Slaughterhouses, Sacrifice, and Sanctity. Essays published by National Council of Young Israel include A Torah Philosophy of Death, Difficulties Facing Converts, Rav Shlomo Goren on Slavery and the Freedom of Man, and Potholes, Jewish Leap Years, and the Divine Presence. Audio presentations include The Biblical Crescendo of Shabbat, and a series, The History of the Jewish People from Abraham to the State of Israel. Essays for the Orthodox Union include Dimona - The Israel That People Don't Think About and Shabbat in Sderot .

Rabbi Kornblau is a member of the RCA, Vaad Harabonim of Queens, the Orthodox Union, the National Council of Young Israel, and AIPAC. He is a rabbinic sponsor of Organization for Resolution of Agunot (ORA).

Rabbi Kornblau is married to Dr. Dina Kornblau, a pediatric neurologist who works at St. Barnabas Hospital in Bronx, NY. They are blessed with five children.