International Women's Day | Pioneering women of the Masorti/Conservative movement

On this International Women's Day, as we celebrate women's achievements and draw attention to issues surrounding women's rights, we share a special message from our President, Margo Gold:

To commemorate the date we highlight the pioneering women of the Masorti/Conservative movement, whose examples continue to inspire us to promote our development and values. Join us in celebrating and honoring our leaders and trailblazers from around the world.

Rabbi Amy Eilberg | USA

Rabbi Amy Eilberg was the first woman ordained as a rabbi by the Masorti/Conservative Movement, in 1985 at JTS, the culmination of years of advocacy by Jewish feminists, and contentious debate. Rabbi Eilberg dedicates herself to the pursuit of peace and justice, and has made pioneering contributions to the fields of Jewish healing and spiritual direction.

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Rabbi Analia Bortz | Israel

Rabbi Analia Bortz was one of the first women rabbis ordained in Jerusalem for AmLat. Medical Doctor, postdoc in Bioethics and chosen by the BBC as 1 of the most 100 influential women for my work on infertility (body & soul) and stigmas on mental disorders. Along with her husband, Rabbi Mario Karpuj, she founded Congregation Or Hadash in Sandy Springs, Georgia.

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Rabbi Gesa Ederberg | Germany

Rabbi Gesa Ederberg is the first female rabbi to serve in Berlin since the Holocaust ordained by the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies in 2002. Rabbi Gesa leads our Oranienburger Straße congregation and co-founded the European Rabbinical Assembly of Masorti/Conservative Rabbis. Rabbi Gesa was preceded as the first woman rabbi in Germany by Rabbi Regina Jonas, who was tragically killed in Auschwitz.

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Gillian Caplin | UK

Gillian Caplin was the first female President of Masorti Olami, having had a long career in broadcasting and in Jewish communal organizations. Gillian is also a co-founder of Masorti Europe, set up to enable and encourage the development of Masorti communities across Europe and sits on the Board of Governors at JAFI.

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Chazzan Jaclyn Chernett | UK

Jaclyn Chernett was the first woman in the UK to be ordained as a chazzan in 2006 by the New York Academy for Jewish Religion. Jaclyn is also a founder member of Kol Nefesh Masorti and a founder of Masorti Judaism in the UK. In 2007, she set up the European Academy for Jewish Liturgy (EAJL) which provides professional training in leadership of Jewish prayer.

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Rabbi Judy Nowominski | Argentina

Rabbi Judy Nowominski was born in Argentina, receiving smicha from the Seminario Rabinico Latinoamericano in December, 2012. In 2021, Rabbi Judy became the first female president of LARA, the Latin American Rabbinical Assembly, and is currently Vice Dean of Rabbinical School of the Seminario Rabinico Latinoamericano.

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Mathilde Schechter | USA

Mathilde Schechter was born in Prussia before moving to London to study, where she met and married Solomon Schechter. Mathilde established a vocational school for Jewish girls and founded the Women’s League for Conservative Judaism, becoming its very first president. She dedicated her life to supporting Jewish women.

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Rakefet Ginsberg | Israel

Rakefet Ginsberg is the first woman to lead the Masorti/Conservative Movement in Israel. Before serving as head of the Movement in Israel, Rakefet worked as deputy director general of the Israeli Movement, and in the past was deputy director for community outreach at NATAL, the Israeli trauma center.

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Rabbi Sarina Vitas | Argentina

Rabbi Sarina Vitas was the first female congregational rabbi in Latin America and is currently Executive Vice President of the Latin American Rabbinical Assembly (LARA), as well being rabbi at our Masorti/Conservative communities ‘Bet Hilel’ and “Amijai” in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

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Shuly Rubin Schwarts | USA

Shuly Rubin Schwartz, Irving Lehrman Research Professor of American Jewish History, a groundbreaking scholar of American Jewish history, and a visionary institutional leader, is the first woman to serve as Jewish Theological Seminary chancellor since JTS was founded in 1886.

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Rabbi Ute Steyer | Sweden

Rabbi Ute Steyer is rabbi of our Masorti/Conservative community in Stockholm, Sweden and is the first female rabbi in the country and in Swedish history. Growing up around Europe, Rabbi Ute received her smicha from JTS in 2009 before becoming rabbi at Stockholm’s Great Synagogue in 2015.

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Masorti Olami

We are Masorti Olami, the official International Movement of Masorti/Conservative Judaism, based in Jerusalem, Israel.


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Masorti Olami
32 General Pierre Koenig, 4th Floor
Jerusalem 93469, Israel
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