One of Reform Judaism’s fastest-growing London communities has appointed a new principal rabbi, who was this week hailed as an “inspired choice” by the movement’s leadership.

Rabbi Shulamit Ambalu, formerly a lecturer at Leo Baeck and a prominent member of the Jewish LGBT+ community, will take the reins at Sha’arei Tsedek after moving from Kehilla North London.

Ambalu, who grew up in the mainstream Orthodox community, was ordained in 2004, having first worked as a speech and language therapist in the NHS.

“I am delighted we have appointed Rabbi Ambalu,” said Sha’arei Tsedek chair Richard Woolf. “Her appointment will give our community the spiritual leadership and vision we need to move forward and builds on the legacy of Rabbi Colin Eimer.”

Senior Reform Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner said: “This is an inspired appointment of an erudite, wise and deeply caring rabbi. It’s a great match between a fabulous community and an outstanding rabbi.”

Rabbi Shulamit Ambalu

Rabbi Shulamit Ambalu