New York, NY — Women of Reform Judaism (WRJ) announced today that Rabbi Liz P.G. Hirsch has been selected to be the next Executive Director beginning July 5, 2023. Rabbi Hirsch will begin this new role following the retirement of the current Executive Director, Rabbi Marla J. Feldman, who served the organization for over eleven years.
“It is an honor to welcome Rabbi Hirsch as WRJ’s seventh Executive Director since 1913,” said WRJ President Sara Charney. “Rabbi Hirsch is a creative and dynamic leader and will take our beloved WRJ to new heights. We look forward to many years of tremendous growth and opportunity under Rabbi Hirsch’s leadership.”
Hirsch currently serves as rabbi of Temple Anshe Amunim, a Reform synagogue in Pittsfield, MA. She is the founding co-chair of RAC Massachusetts, a statewide synagogue-based community organizing project of Reform Judaism, and she serves on the National Council of Jewish Women’s Rabbinic Advisory Council. She was a key leader in the 2020 campaign to pass the ROE Act, safeguarding reproductive rights in Massachusetts.
In accepting the appointment, Rabbi Hirsch said: “It is a profound honor to be the next Executive Director of WRJ. I am inspired by the 110-year history of this organization. The commitment to the pillars of sisterhood, spirituality, and social justice is WRJ’s legacy and future. I am thrilled to partner with WRJ leadership, to meet our members throughout North America and beyond, and to work closely with the other leaders and affiliates of the Reform Movement. I am ready to face both the challenges and the opportunities of leading a Jewish women’s empowerment organization today, from abortion access to gender pay equity; from spiritual growth to leadership development.”
Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ), responded to the news: “The URJ is thrilled that Rabbi Liz P.G. Hirsch will lead WRJ on the next phase of its journey of transformation. From her years at URJ Eisner Camp, NFTY, and as a Legislative Assistant at the RAC, Rabbi Hirsch has been shaped by our Reform Movement and will now bring her passion, brilliance, and imagination to WRJ. Rabbi Marla Feldman has been an extraordinarily effective leader of WRJ and we’re certain that Rabbi Liz P.G. Hirsch will also bless us all with her wise leadership.”
WRJ is the woman’s affiliate of the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ), the central body of Reform Judaism in North America. Founded in 1913, WRJ is a global organization with hundreds of affiliated women’s groups (“sisterhoods”) in North America and around the world, embracing tens of thousands of women. WRJ cultivates sisterhood by empowering Reform Jewish women to find strength, joy, and connection in their communities, and by enriching contemporary life with Jewish rituals, traditions, culture, and opportunities for lifelong learning. WRJ mobilizes collective action on a variety of causes to create a more just and compassionate world for people of all backgrounds and identities.
Previously, Hirsch was the rabbi and a director at URJ Eisner Camp and worked as a Legislative Assistant at the Reform Movement’s Religious Action Center in Washington, D.C. Hirsch was ordained at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York. In recognition of her academic and leadership achievements, she was honored as a Wexner Graduate Fellow, a Tisch Fellow, and a WRJ Scholar during rabbinical school. She completed her undergraduate education at Brown University with a degree in Environmental Studies. Rabbi Hirsch lives in Western Massachusetts with her husband, Rabbi Neil P.G. Hirsch, and their two children.
Hirsch writes frequently on social justice, spiritual practice, and trends in Jewish life, with recent chapters included in The Social Justice Torah Commentary (CCAR Press, 2021) and Prophetic Voices: Renewing and Reimagining Haftarah (CCAR Press, 2023). Her other publications and articles can be found at www.lizpghirsch.com.
Hirsch was selected by the WRJ Personnel Committee after a thorough process led by DRG Talent, an external search firm.
Women of Reform Judaism (WRJ) is a network of Jewish women working together to empower women and communities worldwide through the bonds of sisterhood, spirituality, and social justice. WRJ, founded in 1913, is the women’s affiliate of the Union for Reform Judaism, the central body of Reform Judaism in North America.