Borehamwood’s Rabbi Naftali Brawer to leave for America

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Borehamwood’s Rabbi Naftali Brawer to leave for America

Popular religious leader will depart for the States with his wife Dina, who heads the UK’s Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer and Dina Brawer
Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer and Dina Brawer

The popular former rabbi of Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue is set to leave for America together with his wife, who heads the UK’s Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance.

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer and his wife Dina are heading west after he was appointed to be the new Jewish Chaplain and Neubauer executive director at the prestigious Tufts University’s Hillel.

Boston-born but Canadian raised, Brawer was appointed Rabbi of Northwood United Synagogue in 1996, a post he held until joining the giant Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue in August 2007.

A prolific author, he served on the Chief Rabbi’s cabinet with responsibility for Jewish-Muslim relations, and as vice-chair of the Rabbinical Council of the United Synagogue for three years.

Since 2011 Brawer has worked at Spiritual Capital Foundation, a think-tank and consultancy in London before which he was a congregational rabbi thought leader, frequently contributing to the BBC.

He holds dual American and British citizenship and will be relocating with his wife Dina, a native of Milan.

Search committee chairman Ted Tye said they had been impressed by Brawer’s “easy manner, leadership, depth of thought and nuanced understanding of the ways Tufts Hillel can play a critical role in the discussion of important issues occurring across our campuses”. The committee also recognised his interfaith work, Tye said.

Brawer said: “I am excited to work in helping our students discover a Judaism that is compelling, meaningful, and relevant to their lives. The future of Americans being shaped on university campuses. I cannot think of a more exciting place to be.”

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