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Rabbi David Saperstein Biography

Rabbi David Saperstein

President, World Union for Progressive Judaism

Senior Advisor to the URJ for Policy and Strategy

Director Emeritus, Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism

Rabbi Saperstein currently serves as the President of the World Union for Progressive Judaism. Designated by Newsweek Magazine as the most influential rabbi in America and by the Washington Post as the “quintessential religious lobbyist on Capitol Hill,” for decades he directed the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, representing the Reform Jewish Movement, the largest segment of American Jewry, to the U.S. Congress and Administration.

For over two years (2015-2017), Rabbi Saperstein served his nation as the U.S. Ambassador at Large for International Religious Freedom, carrying out his responsibilities as the country’s chief diplomat on religious freedom issues. Also an attorney, he taught seminars on Church –State law and Jewish Law for 35 years at Georgetown University Law Center.

During his career, Rabbi Saperstein served on the boards or executive committees of numerous prominent U.S. interfaith and public interest organizations including the NAACP, the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the National Religious Partnership on the Environment and the World Faith Development Dialogue.

A prolific writer and speaker, Rabbi Saperstein has appeared on most major U.S. television news and talk shows. Internationally, he has been interviewed by television, radio, and print media in over fifteen countries. His articles have appeared in the Washington Post, New York Times, and Harvard Law Review. His latest book is Jewish Dimensions of Social Justice: Tough Moral Choices of Our Time. 

He currently serves as a Senior Fellow at the Georgetown University School of Foreign Service's Center for Jewish Civilization as well as the Senior Advisor for Strategy and Policy for the Union for Reform Judaism.

Rabbi Saperstein is married to Ellen Weiss, an award-winning journalist, and has two sons, Daniel, a musician, and Ari, an artist and writer.