Former United Synagogue President Simon Hochhauser has been confirmed as the final candidate for Board of Deputies president.
After only declaring his intention to stand on Monday, he attracted the 20 nominations to stand by yesterday’s deadline, declaring himself “delighted”.
He came forward after outgoing President Jonathan Arkush stressed there was still time for others to come forward at the Board’s monthly plenary on Sunday. By then, Edwin Shuker, Marie van der Zyl and Sheila Gewolb had already received the required number of nominations to stand for the top job.
He originally ruled himself out of running to succeed Board president Jonathan Arkush, who surprised deputies in February by announcing that he would not stand for election for a further three year period in May.
At the time Hochhauser, a deputy for South Hampstead Synagogue who is also co-chairman of the circumcision charity, Milah UK, said he had too many commitments to agree to run for president. But he U-turned in the last week,saying that a number of deputies had tried to persuade him to put his name forward.
It comes after The Board of Deputies withdrew a nominations form for next month’s Board of Deputies elections after being advised by a leading QC it was “invalid and not fair”.
When Hochhauser said he would run, Gillian Merron, the Board’s chief executive, sent out new forms — giving rise to the possibility that his candidacy would depend on a different set of electoral rules. The move prompted fury from campaign teams from other candidates.