Feb 4, 2005 — Dr. Jacob J. Schacter has been appointed University Professor of Jewish History and Jewish Thought and also Senior Scholar at Yeshiva University’s (YU) Center for the Jewish Future by President Richard M. Joel, effective this fall. University Professor is a special faculty position that allows Dr. Schacter, working in association with the deans, to teach and develop multidisciplinary initiatives at various academic units of the university. The position of Senior Scholar will enable Rabbi Schacter to play a prominent role in the new Center’s development.
Rabbi Schacter comes to YU after serving for five years as dean of the Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik Institute in Brookline, MA. A leading scholar and educator, Rabbi Schacter graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa from Brooklyn College and received a PhD in Near Eastern Languages from Harvard University, where he was a teaching fellow. At YU, he directed the Torah Umadda Project from 1986 to 1997, and was an adjunct assistant professor at Stern College for Women from 1993 to 1999.
“Rabbi Schacter is one of the nation’s premier Jewish educators and leaders,” said President Joel. “As a faculty member at YU, he will be essential to our goals of providing academic excellence to our students and to enriching our responsibility to our communities through education and outreach. We are very fortunate to have him join us on our journey of shaping a comprehensive vision of American Jewry.”
Rabbi Schacter was the senior rabbi of The Jewish Center in New York City from 1981 to 2000. He is the founding editor of The Torah Umadda Journal and co-author, with YU Prof. Jeffrey Gurock, of A Modern Heretic and a Traditional Community: Mordecai M. Kaplan, Orthodoxy, and American Judaism (Columbia University Press, 1997). Additionally, he is the author of some 50 articles and reviews in Hebrew and English as well as editor of several books.
“Rabbi Schacter, whose expertise will help shape the Center, has been an outstanding mentor to many rabbis and Jewish communal leaders,” commented Rabbi Kenneth Brander, incoming dean of the Center for the Jewish Future.
Rabbi Schacter has served as founding president of the Council of Orthodox Jewish Organizations of the Upper West Side of Manhattan. He is currently a faculty member of The Wexner Foundation and The Wexner Heritage Foundation, and a member of the board of governors of the Orthodox Union. He also sits on the editorial boards of Tradition, Jewish Action, and Bechol Derachecha Da’ehu.
“For many years I considered Yeshiva University as my ideological home and I am honored for it now to be my professional home as well,” Rabbi Schacter said.