Rabbi Richard A. BlockRABlockPhoto2012smaller

Rabbi Block was ordained and awarded a Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters at Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, OH in 1982, receiving numerous awards for academic distinction, writing, and sermonic excellence. Upon ordination, he was chosen Rabbi of Greenwich Reform Synagogue, Riverside CT. In 1986, he received the Humanitarian Award of the Council of Churches and Synagogues of Lower Fairfield County, CT, for community leadership "worthy of esteem and commendation" that "made a significant difference in his community and in our whole region."

Rabbi Block was Senior Rabbi of Congregation Beth Am, Los Altos Hills, CA, from 1987-1999. He received the Jewish Family and Children's Services of San Francisco's 1999 "FAMMY" Award, "in appreciation of extraordinary caring and dedicated community service." Hebrew Union College conferred upon him an honorary doctorate in 2007 and, in 2008, Newsweek recognized him as "one of the top 25 pulpit rabbis in America."

Rabbi Block is the Immediate Past President of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), which represents more than 2000 Reform Rabbis throughout North America and beyond. It is the rabbinic leadership organization of Reform Judaism. In that capacity, he represented the CCAR on The Conference of Presidents of Major Jewish Organizations, the Board of Governors of Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion, the Oversight Committee of the Union for Reform Judaism, and the Reform Movement's Pension Board. He served as president of the World Union for Progressive Judaism and the Greater Cleveland Board of Rabbis. He is a member of the executive committee of the Jewish Federation of Cleveland. His many publications include Sacred Pilgrimage A Jewish Reflection on Life, Death and Eternity, and How I Wish I Could Fish!, a children's book.

Prior to his rabbinical studies, Rabbi Block graduated with honors from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and from Yale Law School, where he was an editor of the Yale Law Journal. He was a law clerk to a US District Court judge and served on active duty in the US Navy's Judge Advocate General's Corps, including a term as a Special Assistant US Attorney. He and Susie Block, a community volunteer, have been married since 1969. They have two sons, Joshua and Zachary, and are also blessed with two wonderful daughters-in-law, Kimberly and Rachel, and five delicious grandchildren: Jordan, Solomon, Jack, Walter and Marni.

 

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