Monday, May 18, 2009

A Jewish First

The Jerusalem Post is reporting that the first African-American female Rabbi will be taking the pulpit at a Conservative congregation in Greenville, North Carolina.
She will be the first African-American rabbi to lead a majority white congregation, despite the fact that about 20 percent of the American Jewish community is ethnically and racially diverse, according to the San Francisco-based Institute for Jewish and Community Research.

Stanton's ordination will provide young black Jewish Americans "with an important role model," says Diane Tobin, associate director of the institute. "Hopefully over time they will see themselves reflected in the community."

Via Ilya Somin, who asks what that 20% figure means in this context. It seems pretty clear that it refers to non-Ashkenazi Jews of all stripes, which from an American Jewish perspective is the minority group.

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