Rabbi Laura Geller returns to the Seekers of Meaning Podcast to discuss her forthcoming book, co-authored with her late husband, Richard Siegel, Getting Good at Getting Older.
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About the Guest
Rabbi Laura Geller, Rabbi Emerita
Rabbi Laura Geller came to Temple Emanuel of Beverly Hills in 1994. She was the first Reform woman rabbi to be selected as the Senior Rabbi of a major metropolitan congregation. Rabbi Geller has been recognized with numerous awards and honors, including being named one of Newsweek’s 50 Most Influential Rabbis in America for two years in a row, and receiving the California State Legislature’s Woman of the Year Award. In 2015 she was named one of the 33 most inspiring rabbis by Forward Magazine. Featured in the PBS Documentary called Jewish Americans, she is the author of many articles in journals and books, is a frequent contributor to the Huffington Post, and served on the Editorial Board of The Torah: A Woman’s Commentary, in which she has two published essays. Most recently, she has spearheaded a groundbreaking new project called Next Stage: Temple Emanuel’s Boomer and Beyond Initiative.
Prior to being chosen as Senior Rabbi in 1994, she served as the Executive Director of the American Jewish Congress, Pacific Southwest Region. Among her accomplishments at AJCongress was the creation of the AJCongress Feminist Center, which became a model for other Jewish feminist projects around the county. She came to AJCongress in 1990 after 14 years as the Director of Hillel at the University of Southern California.
Rabbi Geller is a Fellow of the Corporation of Brown University from where she graduated in 1971. Rabbi Geller was ordained by the Hebrew Union College in 1976, and is the third woman in the Reform Movement to become a rabbi. She is married to Richard A. Siegel, and she is the mother of Joshua and Elana Goldstein, grandmother of Avery Peter Goldstein, and the stepmother of Andy and Ruth Siegel.
On June 24th and 25th Rabbi Geller celebrated 22 years at Temple Emanuel and transitioned to Rabbi Emerita. Still part of the Emanuel family, she continues her work with the Next Stage Intiative, and the community building program ChaiVillageLA.