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A native of the Bay Area, Rabbi Emeritus Yoel Kahn, is a graduate of UC Berkeley and was ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1985. He served as Senior Rabbi of Congregation Beth El from 2007 through his retirement in 2021.
After his rabbinic ordination, Rabbi Kahn served as the Rabbi of
Congregation Sha’ar Zahav in San Francisco and received his Ph.D. through the Center for Jewish Studies at the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, California, in 1999. He also served as the Executive Director with the Hillel Foundation at Stanford University and as Visiting Assistant Professor of Jewish Studies at the Graduate Theological Union. Prior to coming to Congregation Beth El, he served as the Associate Director of the Jewish Community Center of San Francisco and Director of its Taube Center for Jewish Life where he was responsible for Jewish education and Jewish life as well as the arts and lectures programs of the Center.
Rabbi Kahn has served on the Liturgy Committee and has been a member of the Responsa [Law] Committee, the Committee on Reform Jewish Practice and the Board of Directors of the
Central Conference of American Rabbis. In 2010, he was elected President of the Pacific Association of Reform Rabbis. Kahn’s research on the history of Jewish worship was published in the award-winning book The Three Blessings: Boundaries, Censorship and Identity in Jewish Liturgy (Oxford University Press, 2011). In 2010, he was awarded a Doctor of Divinity honoris causa by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion on the occasion of the twenty-fifth anniversary of his ordination.

Wed, February 28 2024 19 Adar I 5784