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Louisville mayor, rabbis celebrate Kentucky's longest serving rabbi

“The work you have done for this entire city is unmatched,” Mayor Craig Greenberg said.
Credit: Jay May Photography

LOUISVILLE, Ky. — Kentucky’s longest serving rabbi, Robert Slosberg, was honored on Sunday, at Congregation Adath Jeshurun in Louisville.

Mayor Craig Greenberg congratulated him, citing Slosberg’s community involvement and social justice efforts.

"The work you have done for this entire city is unmatched,” Greenberg said.

Slosberg advocated for affordable housing, criminal justice reform and justice for all in the Louisville community.

Longtime friend Rabbi Elliot Gertel of Chicago, who was Slosberg’s classmate from Columbia in 1972 and rabbinical school, praised Slosberg and his wife, Deborah.

Gertel spoke about the Slosbergs' innovative programs and the creation of Congregation Adath Jeshurun, a “beacon and model for other synagogues around the country”.

Other Louisville rabbis like Rabbi Ben Freed of Keneseth Israel and Rabbi David Ariel-Joel of The Temple joined the nearly 400 people from across the city who came to honor Slosberg.

Slosberg will be retiring June 30, 2023, to become Rabbi Emeritus at the synagogue.

Slosberg has been a rabbi since 1981 and was the third rabbi at Adath Jeshurun since 1917.

During his 42-year tenure, Slosberg guided the congregation through an expansion of programming including the award-winning Louisville Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning. 

Slosberg is credited with helping to raise over $5,000,000.00 to renovate the synagogue.

Slosberg has involved the congregation in numerous social action projects. Among his most proud achievements was arranging for three different families of the Lost Boys of Sudan to be reunited in America. 

Under his leadership, money was raised to save both a local church and a local school from closing. 

Most recently, he has involved the congregation in social justice issues through CLOUT. He has also led thirty-six missions to Israel enabling over 700 people to visit the Jewish State.

Rabbi Slosberg has held several national leadership positions including serving as the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Masorti Foundation, the national Chairman of the Conservative Movement’s Commission on outreach, and the Chairman of the Board of Overseers of Albert A. List College.

Rabbi Slosberg received his Bachelor of Arts Cum Laude from Columbia University with honors in history. He additionally earned a B.A. and an M.A. degree, rabbinic ordination, and an honorary Doctor of Divinity from the Jewish Theological Seminary.

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