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Rabbi Hershel Schachter and Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks to Be Recognized for Contributions to Jewish Law in Modern Life

Yeshiva University Rosh Yeshiva Rabbi Hershel Schachter, Nathan and Vivian Fink Distinguished Professorial Chair in Talmud at YU-affiliated Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Rabbinical Theological Seminary (RIETS), and Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, Kressel and Ephrat Family University Professor of Jewish Thought, will be presented with the 2014 Katz Award for their contributions to the practical analysis and application of halakha [Jewish law] in modern life.

Rabbi Hershel Schachter

Rabbi Hershel Schachter

The award is to be bestowed by Katz Family Foundation committee members, including former Chief Rabbi of Israel Rabbi Israel Meir Lau, Hebrew University President Professor Menachem Ben-Sasson, and noted Talmudic scholar Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz, at a ceremony at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem on Tuesday, May 27 at 6:00 p.m.

“Rav Schachter and Rav Sacks are among the greatest Jewish minds of this generation, and we are so pleased that they are being recognized appropriately for their scholarship, works of profound clarity and rabbinic genius that have not only informed but transformed the way we relate to Jewish thought and religious observance,” said YU President Richard M. Joel. “At Yeshiva University, we consider ourselves fortunate for the opportunity to engage with these Torah giants on a daily basis.”

A renowned Talmudic scholar and a prominent authority in matters of Jewish law, Rabbi Schachter published an expansive collection of books and articles – many of which focus on the teachings of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik z”l, including Eretz HaTzvi, Nefesh HaRav, and Divrei HaRav.

Rabbi Sacks

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

Formerly the Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth, Rabbi Sacks is known the world over for his mastery of the spoken and written word. The author of over 25 titles and the editor of many more, Rabbi Sacks is the recipient of numerous accolades for his written works, including the Jerusalem Prize and three American National Jewish Book Awards, most recently this year for the Koren Sacks Pesach Machzor.

The Katz Prize, established by Marcos Katz, YU benefactor and trustee, along with his wife, Adina, has been awarded annually since 1975 to honor the memory of Golda Katz, the Katz family’s matriarch. Past prize recipients include Professor Menachem Alon, Nechama Leibowitz, Professor Zeev Lev, and Rabbi Yosef Kapach.

Rabbi Zalman Nehemiah Goldberg, the Rosh Yeshiva of both the Hasidic yeshiva of Sadigura and the Jerusalem College of Technology and the co-author of the Rabbinical Council of America’s prenuptial agreement, and Rabbi Yehoshua Yeshaya Neuwirth z”l, the late rabbinic scholar who authored Shemirat Shabbat Kehilchatah, the authoritative work on the laws of Shabbat and Yom Tov, will also be recognized at the award ceremony in Jerusalem.