Women’s voices must be heard too
ABOVE ALL other considerations, the next chief rabbi must be the best man for the job.
So what does that mean from a woman’s perspective? Thus far, the Chief Rabbinate Trust has ensured that women’s voices have been heard on an equal footing with their male counterparts. Initiated by the immediate past US president, Simon Hochhauser, and his trustees, wide-ranging consultation has already taken place with United Synagogue Women, the chairs of governors of US schools and the RCUS (Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue).
The next stages in the recruitment process must continue to ensure that the female perspective is heard. There is at least one woman member of the Chief Rabbinate Trust and four women representatives at the US Trustees table, who are in positions of authority and influence.
As one of these four I hope to use my expertise and experience from the professional, business, education and communal worlds, alongside my experiences as a woman and an Orthodox Jew.
The involvement of women, supported by clear halachic rulings from foremost Orthodox authorities, must be promoted by all interested parties, women as well as men. This approach will ensure that women take their rightful place in 21st-century United Synagogue Judaism.
This is no easy task, and the right candidate will clearly need to have deep reserves of courage, skill and tenacity in addressing this, as well as many other issues.