We are happy to note the appointment of Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman as the fifth president of Yeshiva University, succeeding Richard Joel. He is an illustrious product of the YU educational system, having graduated with distinction from Yeshiva University High School for Boys, Yeshiva College, Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), and the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies.
An accomplished Torah scholar, he has served as an instructor of Talmud at RIETS. Known for his oratorical skills, he served for six years as senior rabbi of The Jewish Center until immigrating to Israel in 2008.
While in Israel Rabbi Berman earned a doctorate in Jewish thought at Hebrew University and has been serving as the head of Heichal Shlomo/The Jewish Heritage Center, a leading center for Torah-oriented Jewish life from a Modern Orthodox/Religious Zionist perspective. He has also been serving as an instructor at Herzog College, a teacher’s college affiliated with the Center and located in the settlement of Alon Shvut, outside Jerusalem.
Rabbi Berman seems eminently well suited to guide Yeshiva University in the coming years. We believe his erudition and intellectual heft – and the respect they command – combined with his ingratiating demeanor will serve him well as faces the daunting tasks of meeting Yeshiva’s budgetary challenges and confronting the growing threat posed by Open Orthodoxy.
In saying this, we can only echo then-YU President Rabbi Norman Lamm, who welcomed Rabbi Berman upon his becoming a YU Talmud instructor in 1998 by describing him as “a rising star in the firmament of Talmudic scholars and rabbis. His talents are enhanced by an attractive personality and a sterling character, and we, therefore, are delighted with his appointment.”
We wish both Rabbi Berman and Yeshiva University well in the years to come.