Rabbi Ed Feinstein

Elie Wiesel wrote that “God created humanity, because God loves stories.” Rabbi Ed Feinstein loves stories too, and has spent his adult life sharing the stories of the Jewish people. Teacher, lecturer, storyteller, Rabbi Feinstein is rabbi of Valley Beth Shalom in Encino, California and Lecturer at the Ziegler Rabbinical School of the American Jewish University. He has served on the faculty of the Wexner Heritage Program, Milken Community High School, the Chautauqua Institution, and the Shalom Hartman Institute. Raised in the back of his parents’ bakery on the wild frontiers of the West San Fernando Valley, Ed graduated from the University of California at Santa Cruz, Columbia University Teachers College, and the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, where he was ordained a rabbi and earned his doctorate in education. He was the founding head of the Solomon Schechter Academy of Dallas, Associate Rabbi of Congregation Shearith Israel in Dallas, and Executive Director of Camp Ramah in California. He came to Valley Beth Shalom in 1993.

Rabbi Feinstein is the author of five books, including Tough Questions Jews Ask, which is taught in schools and synagogues across North America. The Chutzpah Imperative traces the history of theological humanism in Jewish sacred literature. Capturing the Moon retells the greatest Jewish stories. His latest book, In Pursuit of Godliness and a Living Judaism, is an intellectual biography of his mentor, Rabbi Harold Schulweis.

Ed shares life with Rabbi Nina Bieber Feinstein, their three children and spouses, and two beautiful new grandchildren. Every Friday afternoon, he bakes brownies from a recipe revealed to his ancestors at Mount Sinai.

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