December 10, 2020 – The Rabbinical Council of America, the leading membership organization of orthodox rabbis in North America, mourns the loss of its mentor and guide, the preeminent scholar and halachic authority, Rabbi Gedalia Dov Schwartz, zt”l. Rabbi Schwartz served as the Av Beth Din (head of the rabbinical court) of the Beth Din of America and as Rosh Beit Din of the Chicago Rabbinical Council. He served as the editor of the RCA’s Torah journal Hadarom and was the author of Divrei Regesh, Migdanos Eliezer, and Shaarei Gedulah.
Rabbi Daniel Korobkin, president of the RCA, said, “Rabbi Schwartz was well respected for his encyclopedic halachic knowledge and insight, as well as his ability to understand the nuances of circumstances and the complexities of human nature. He was unafraid to address the challenges of contemporary society and the needs of individuals.”
Rabbi Leonard Matanky, past president of the RCA, said, “Rabbi Schwartz was not only a soaring rabbinic figure, he was a man who related to all people regardless of age, race, or beliefs. His strength of conviction and belief, combined with his wisdom and kindness, made him the ideal representative of the beauty of our Torah. We were all his students, and he was the gentle guide who treated us with great respect, always available to offer guidance and counsel. His passing leaves a void in our lives that will not be easily filled.”