Synagogue and State in America

Straus Center Presents November 6 Conversation with Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and Attorney Nathan Lewin

Yeshiva University’s Zahava and Moshael Straus Center for Torah and Western Thought presents a conversation with United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia and renowned attorney and Yeshiva College graduate Nathan Lewin on “Synagogue and State In America: The Landmark First Amendment Cases of our Age” on Wednesday, November 6, 2013 in YU’s Lamport Auditorium, 2540 Amsterdam Ave., New York City. The discussion, part of YU’s “Great Conversations on Religion and Democracy” series, begins at 7 p.m. and will be moderated by Rabbi Dr. Meir Soloveichik, director of the Straus Center.

Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia

United States Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia

“It is an immense honor to welcome a justice of the United States Supreme Court who is also recognized as one of the most brilliant jurists of our age to the Straus Center,” said Rabbi Soloveichik. “I am especially delighted that we will be able to feature Justice Scalia in conversation with Yeshiva alumnus Nathan Lewin, whose extraordinary legal career is a source of great pride to our University.”

A graduate of Harvard Law School, Scalia served as professor of law at the University of Virginia and the University of Chicago, and as visiting professor of law at Georgetown and Stanford universities. In 1982, he was appointed judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Scalia is the longest-serving justice currently on the Court, having been appointed by President Ronald Reagan in 1986.

Nathan Lewin photo by Rikki Lewin

Litigator Nathan Lewin ’57YC (Photo by Rikki Lewin)

Lewin has engaged in trial and appellate litigation in federal and state courts for 40 years. As assistant to the solicitor general in the Department of Justice under Solicitors General Archibald Cox and Thurgood Marshall, he argued 12 cases before the Supreme Court for the United States. Since entering private practice he has argued another 15 cases before the Supreme Court. Lewin received his B.A. summa cum laude from Yeshiva College in 1957, and earned his J.D. magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School in 1960.

The Straus Center is named in honor of Moshael J. Straus, an investment executive, alumnus and member of YU’s Board of Trustees, and his wife Zahava, a graduate of YU’s Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. The Center’s mission is to help develop Jewish thinkers and wisdom-seeking Jews by deepening their education in the best of the Jewish tradition, by exposing them to the richness of human knowledge and insight from across the ages, and by confronting them with the great moral, philosophical, and theological questions of our age.

The event is free and open to the public. To RSVP, please email


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