Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald
National Jewish Outreach Program, New York, NY
Jan 31, 2011
Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald is one of the leaders in the movement of Jewish return in America today. He has pioneered and developed many of the most dramatic and effective outreach programs in this country.
Ordained at Yeshiva University, where he was a student of Rabbi Dr. J. B. Soloveitchik, Rabbi Buchwald served from 1973 for 15 years as the Director of Education at Lincoln Square Synagogue in New York, which, during his tenure, became one of the largest and most successful centers for adult Jewish education programs in America. He also established and coordinated Lincoln Square's celebrated outreach program. Since 1975, Rabbi Buchwald has led the now renowned "Beginners Service," a special Shabbat service for people with little or no synagogue experience.
In July of 1987, Rabbi Buchwald founded the National Jewish Outreach Program. NJOP sponsors the acclaimed Shabbat Across America/Canada and Read Hebrew America/Canada campaigns, establishes Beginners Services and offers the Turn Friday Night Into Shabbat, Passover Across America and Sukkot Across America programs, as well as free "Crash Courses" in Hebrew Reading, Basic Judaism and Jewish History. These programs are now hosted by more than 3600 locations across North America, and more than three dozen countries worldwide. NJOP also has an extensive presence on the web. NJOP’s “Jewish Tweets,” was the first Jewish presence on Twitter, the popular social networking site, and has been recognized by JTA as the #2 most influential Jewish newswire on Twitter. Through its “Jewish Treats” email, NJOP offers “Juicy bits of Judaism, daily,” on diverse Jewish topics. Through these much admired programs and the innovative Jewish consciousness raising advertising campaigns, NJOP has successfully reached more than one million North American Jews and engaged them in Jewish life.
In May 2001, Rabbi Buchwald was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters by Yeshiva University in recognition of his pioneering outreach work. He has been included in the Forward 50, a list of America’s 50 most influential Jews, and has been part of Newsweek’s list of the top 50 Rabbis in America for the last three years.
Rabbi Buchwald was founding President of the Association for Jewish Outreach Professionals (AJOP). He lectures across the country, and overseas, and leads experiential programs in cities throughout the world. He and his wife Aidel, reside in New York City, and are the proud parents of four children and six grandchildren.