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  • Interviewing Joan Rivers

    By Naomi Pfefferman

    September 4, 2014 | 3:28 pm

    In May 2013, I was more than a tad nervous when asked to conduct a 45-minute Q&A with Rivers following a performance of her act at the American Jewish University.  Rivers, after all, was the notorious fashion polista of the red carpet awards scene, so ruthless that she once...

  • Moving and Shaking: Hebrew University of Jerusalem and Ben-Gurion University of the Negev

    By Ryan Torok

    June 11, 2014 | 1:18 pm

    The Hebrew University of Jerusalem recently bestowed multiple honors on people with connections to the Los Angeles area. 

    Patricia Glaser, a member of the university’s international board of governors, received an honorary doctorate on June 8 in Jerusalem. The Malibu resident...

  • Danny Sanderson in L.A., celebrating 40 years of Israeli pop music

    By Tom Teicholz

    December 4, 2013 | 2:01 pm

    If you’ve been to Israel in the last 40 years or heard Israeli popular music, then you probably know Danny Sanderson, who will be performing with his band at the Gindi Auditorium at American Jewish University on Dec. 8. Sanderson was a founding member in 1973 of Kaveret (literally...

  • Jewish art spans city with ‘Sacred Words, Sacred Texts’

    October 30, 2013 | 1:28 pm

    The Jewish art scene in Los Angeles is a small but vibrant community that spans generations, styles, and the full length and breadth of the city itself. Now, for the first time, three of L.A.’s preeminent Jewish institutions — Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion...

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  • LimmudLA Fest: Less is more

    August 21, 2013 | 1:37 pm

    There are very few places where one could learn about the Jewish prison population, sing Kiddush with a Broadway legend and do tai chi — all in one weekend. 

    All of these topics were among those explored at the first-ever LimmudLA Fest, a retreat full of learning that took place...

  • Israel’s AG: Eliyahu’s candidacy for chief rabbi legally indefensible

    July 16, 2013 | 10:46 am

    Israel’s attorney general said the candidacy of Shmuel Eliyahu for Sephardic chief rabbi of Israel raised legal difficulties and could not be defended by his office.

    While Yehuda Weinstein cannot officially bar Eliyahu from running for chief rabbi, the attorney general said...

  • Hillary Clinton, private citizen, reflects on Israel, Benghazi and Middle East unrest

    By Susan Freudenheim

    June 25, 2013 | 11:11 am

    “Live your values, embrace your traditions, but open yourselves up and never stop trying to heal the wounds of the world,” former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton implored an audience of 4,000 at Gibson Amphitheatre in Universal City on June 24. Without revealing any...

  • Conversion: A big leap, one small step at a time

    June 6, 2013 | 2:33 pm

    Jazmine Green’s Jewish journey began when she met the person with whom she wanted to spend the rest of her life. It wasn’t until a brief separation from her boyfriend, however, that she knew she was making the right decision — to convert.

    “There was this assumption that since we...

  • Slavin Library collection dispersal benefits many

    June 6, 2013 | 1:43 pm

    The 10,000 books, games, CDs and DVDs that once lined the walls of the Slavin Children’s Library at 6505 Wilshire Blvd. are on track to once more be made available to the public later this month.

    Four institutions — American Jewish University (AJU), Chabad of Santa Monica, the...

  • AJU’s Geller Fest spotlights the arts

    May 29, 2013 | 11:40 am

    In a new venture into presenting the arts, American Jewish University (AJU) will hold its first-ever Geller Festival of the Arts this summer, drawing names like Joan Rivers and Gideon Raff, the Israeli creator of “Homeland.”

    Running June 16-20, the week’s four events all will be...

  • Conversion 101

    May 8, 2013 | 11:31 am

    Conversion to Judaism is not easy. It requires a change in beliefs, actions and lifestyle. It involves extensive study, practice, a leap of faith, a shift in perception and some sacrifice. However, for those who feel it’s the right decision, it can be an exciting and rewarding...

  • Becoming Jewish: Tales from the Mikveh

    By Susan Freudenheim

    May 8, 2013 | 11:18 am

    Late on a recent Wednesday afternoon, Judith Golden and Suzanne Rosenthal perched at their desks in a small room in the depths of American Jewish University (AJU). It was a quiet day on campus; only a trickle of students occupied the new community library, the classrooms were...

  • Mayoral candidates Greuel, Garcetti go head to head

    By Jonah Lowenfeld

    April 18, 2013 | 2:04 pm

    In the first debate between the two remaining Los Angeles mayoral candidates, City Controller Wendy Greuel and City Councilman Eric Garcetti attempted to convince voters there are significant differences between them, even as the two veteran politicians took identical positions on...

  • The Holy Job Interview

    By Jeremy Fine

    February 10, 2013 | 8:34 am

    Right around this time last year began the craziest month of my life. The Rabbinical Assembly (Conservative Movement’s international body of rabbis) began interview week at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Interview week consisted of soon-to-be graduates of both the JTS Rabbinical...

  • Bill Kristol and his Emergency, Bigotry in AJU Ad?

    February 7, 2013 | 10:18 am

    Exposing Bill Kristol

    Congratulations to Rob Eshman on a superb piece explaining clearly why Bill Kristol and his Emergency Committee for Israel (ECI) not only do not help Israel, but are harmful to her interests (“Emergency?” Feb. 1). His thoughtful explanation is comprehensive,...

  • Preserving Auschwitz?

    By Ryan E. Smith

    January 30, 2013 | 5:11 pm

    For many, the everlasting power of Auschwitz is understood only by visiting the infamous death camp and walking the grounds where more than 1 million people were killed during the Holocaust.

    The problem, according to two local architects, is in assuming the camp itself will be...

  • Nov. 29 and Palestinian Statehood

    By Judea Pearl

    December 5, 2012 | 2:49 pm

    Even as the sound of “Hatikvah” reverberated in the auditorium of the American Jewish University, where Los Angeles commemorated the 65th anniversary of the historic United Nations vote of Nov. 29, 1947, another U.N. vote was casting its shadows on our consciousness — the vote for...

  • The defendant: Moses

    November 28, 2012 | 3:13 pm

    Add another feather to Erwin Chemerinsky’s cap. On Nov. 18, the great legal mind — founding dean of the University of California, Irvine, School of Law and former commentator for the O.J. Simpson trial — got Moses off on two counts: murder and flight to avoid prosecution.

    Yes,...

  • Home after Birthright

    November 28, 2012 | 2:59 pm

    Moledet means “homeland” in Hebrew, and it’s no coincidence that it’s been chosen as the name of a pilot program aimed at maintaining the passion of recent Los Angeles Birthright alumni following their return home from Israel. 

    Applications for the new program, created by...

  • Camp Alonim receives grant from JCamp180

    By Ryan Torok

    November 15, 2012 | 2:43 pm

    JCamp180, a project of the Harold Grinspoon Foundation that aims to enhance long-term effectiveness in Jewish nonprofit overnight camps, has announced that it will begin working with Camp Alonim, one of Southern California’s largest Jewish overnight camps. Alonim will receive...

  • AJC poll shows 65 percent of Jews supporting Obama

    September 27, 2012 | 4:54 pm

    A new American Jewish Committee poll found 65 percent of Jews nationwide planning to vote for President Obama versus 24 percent for Mitt Romney, with another 10 percent undecided.

    The poll, conducted Sept. 6-17 among 1,040 Jewish voters nationwide, found President Obama doing...

  • Teachers learn lessons on Holocaust, genocide

    By Ryan Torok

    March 21, 2012 | 5:36 pm

    Speaking on the Holocaust and 20th century genocides, Mark Gudgel, executive director of the Educators’ Institute for Human Rights, began his March 12 lecture at American Jewish University (AJU) with a declaration.

    “Rwanda is not genocide,” said Gudgel, who also teaches...

  • Shul Business

    By Ryan E. Smith

    March 15, 2012 | 10:36 am

    No one taught Rabbi Ahud Sela how to read a budget when he was in the seminary. Talmud and pastoral counseling took precedence over the basics of planned giving.

    So when the Conservative movement’s Rabbinical Assembly teamed up with American Jewish University (AJU) to create the...

  • Beyond labels, raising autistic son yields treasure

    By Ryan E. Smith

    February 1, 2012 | 2:51 pm

    Jews and people with autism have a lot in common, if you ask Ezra Fields-Meyer.

    As an autistic young man, he knows he has a good memory and likes to repeat things. As a Jew, he’s noticed similar qualities, which he pointed out during his bar mitzvah speech a few years ago.

    “We...

  • Promoting men’s Jewish engagement

    By Roberto Loiederman

    January 4, 2012 | 12:52 pm

    Rabbi Charles Simon, a recent visiting lecturer at American Jewish University (AJU), asked rabbinical students how they would deal with a future intermarriage. One young rabbi-to-be said he’d welcome the couple … then tell them that, unfortunately, he couldn’t marry them....

  • AJU’s Robert Wexler looks ahead

    By Jonah Lowenfeld

    May 3, 2011 | 6:45 pm

    Robert Wexler, president of American Jewish University (AJU), eschews the labels of Judaism’s mainstream denominations.

    “I’m Jewish,” Wexler said last week. “Religious.”

    That’s one way of putting it. Wexler is also an ordained Conservative rabbi who attends a Modern...

  • Authors to discuss terrorism at AJU

    By Ryan Torok

    April 26, 2011 | 5:17 pm

    Authors Thanassis Cambanis, Joel Chasnoff and Mordechai Dzikansky will present on-the-ground perspectives of terrorism in Israel and the Middle East when they appear together next week during a panel discussion, “Terrorism and the Middle East,” at American Jewish University.

    ...
  • AJU women to honor filmmaker Mazursky

    By Tom Tugend

    April 26, 2011 | 5:10 pm

    Filmmaker Paul Mazursky will be honored with the Burning Bush Award by the University Women of the American Jewish University (AJU) at the group’s author-artist luncheon on May 3.

    Sharing the stage at the Beverly Hills Hotel will be Marion Goldenfeld, who will receive the Woman of...

  • Dancing Rabbis will cha-cha for charity

    March 29, 2011 | 5:25 pm

    Rabbi Elliot Dorff twirls across the dance floor. His beautiful young partner reaches out her hand, and together they do a quick step and spin into each other’s arms. No, this is not a comedic doodle on the page of a bored rabbinic student’s notebook; it’s a rehearsal for...

  • Hitchens, Wolpe, Harris, Artson and the Afterlife [EXCERPTS & VIDEO]

    By Rob Eshman

    February 22, 2011 | 6:35 am

    Listen to audio from the event here: part 1 / part 2

    Last week, I took a break from all the news and cares of this life to spend a couple of hours thinking about the next one.

    My role was to serve as moderator in a discussion titled “Is There an Afterlife?” featuring two...

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