fbpx Bryan Schwartzman | Reconstructing Judaism

Bryan Schwartzman

Assistant Director of Media and Development Communications, Reconstructing Judaism

Bryan Schwartzman utilizes his background in journalism, media relations and development to advance Reconstructing Judaism’s messaging and storytelling. An award-winning journalist, he spent a decade reporting for the Philadelphia Jewish Exponent and has written for a variety of Jewish publications including the Forward and the Jerusalem Post. Prior to joining Reconstructing Judaism, he was the manager of marketing and communications for the Evans Consulting Group, which specializes in guiding nonprofit fundraising campaigns. He also writes short fiction and has been nominated for the Pushcart Prize.

Bryan earned his bachelor of arts in English and Journalism at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst and his master’s degree in modern Jewish studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York.

Reconstructionists Featured at Society for Jewish Ethics Conference

The Reconstructionist movement is being well represented at the 2022 Annual Meeting of the Society of Jewish Ethics, taking place Jan. 6-9 over Zoom. In fact, in terms of the number of presenters —at least three — the movement will have a greater presence at this year’s virtual gathering than at any time since the first conference was held in 2003.

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National Endowment for the Humanities Funds the Center for Jewish Ethics for Groundbreaking, Project on Race, Racism and American Judaism

The Center for Jewish Ethics at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College has received a transformative grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to fund cross-disciplinary research into race, racism and the American Jewish experience. The center’s aims have an impact far beyond the academy by developing educational materials and programs for youth, individual adult learners, and communities. 

The one-year, $199,850 grant will enable the Levin-Lieber Program in Jewish Ethics to establish and run a new initiative tentatively called “Race, Religion and American Judaism: Cross-Disciplinary Research, Public Scholarship and Curriculum Development.”

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New Online Community for Jewish Poets and Liturgists Aims to Produce “Ripple” Effect

For 20 years, Ritualwell has served as a pioneering resource for original Jewish liturgy and rituals, along the way nurturing an informal network of liturgists, poets and ritual innovators. Now, it has launched ADVOT @ Ritualwell, a formal online community offering unprecedented support and empowerment to writers who are imagining new ways to mark life’s most salient moments in a Jewish context.

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America's First Bat Mitzvah and its Legacy for American Jewish Life

The first American bat mitzvah took place nearly a century ago, but its effects reverberate to this day. This podcast episode explores how the bat mitzvah helped pave the way for greater inclusion of women in public Jewish ritual and practice and laid the groundwork for further steps toward inclusion.

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In 2020, Reconstructionist Communities Prove More Vital (and Adaptive) Than Ever

2020 has been a year defined by pandemic, economic collapse, protests for racial justice, political disarray and, in the case of much of the West Coast, catastrophic fires. Yet Jewish life went on, proving to be both adaptable and vital. Reconstructionist congregations have adapted, based on millennia of precedents and an unceasing commitment to community.

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Reconstructing Judaism's President Recognized as LGBT Icon

Reconstructing Judaism’s president, Rabbi Deborah Waxman, Ph.D., has been hailed as an LGBT Icon as part of LGBT History Month. Waxman is the first woman and first lesbian to lead a major Jewish denomination and rabbinical seminary.

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Tribute to Howard Blitman

Howard N. Blitman, a long-serving member of Reconstructing Judaism’s Board of Governors, was presented with the organization’s Presidential Recognition Award.

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Key Tips For Talking With News Professionals: A Resource for Community Leaders

Positive media coverage can amplify your voice, inform the public about key issues and build further credibility for your community. At the same time, a negative story can negatively impact your community’s reputation. Here are key tips for speaking with journalists.

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Whizin Prize Essay Explores the Place of Obligation in Modern Jewish Thought

The Center for Jewish Ethics, affiliated with the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, sponsors an annual essay contest to encourage innovative thinking on contemporary Jewish ethics. This year’s Whizin Prize has been awarded to an essay by Daniel Mackler, titled “Phenomenology of Hiyuv Out of the Sources of Ethics: Joseph Soloveitchik and Mara Benjamin.” The essay is a scholarly exploration of the religious experience of obligation, bringing together a traditional and a feminist perspective.  

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The Impossible Dream? Reconstructionist Rabbi Works to Make Israeli-Palestinian Peace a Reality

Rabbi Donna Kirshbaum has never been one to shy away from a challenge. She has operated a dairy farm in the Missouri Ozarks, eked out a living as a classical cellist, enrolled in the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in her 50s and started a new life in Israel in her 60s. Now a member of Israel’s largest grassroots movement, she is pursuing a goal that’s eluded the world for a century: a negotiated political settlement between the Israelis and Palestinians.

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Online Exhibit on Women Rabbis Expands

The Jewish Women’s Archive (JWA) this month expanded its online exhibit “Women Rabbis,” which highlights nearly a dozen Reconstructionist clergy as well as the history of the movement. 

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Finding a Home Within a Home in Central Oregon: Shalom Bayit Opens Doors to Reconstructing Judaism

Shalom Bayit of Bend Oregon is a new affiliate of Reconstructing Judaism. Their story is one of an eclectic, big-tent congregation with a spiritual and informal approach. Members have built a meaningful Jewish community in a city with virtually no history of Jewish life and where nearly everyone is a transplant.

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With Training and Funding From RRC, Reconstructionist Rabbis and Rabbinical Students Engage Those Seeking Connection and Meaning

Reconstructing Judaism’s support of entrepreneurship gives rabbinical students and recent graduates the funding, supervision and mentorship to turn ideas into reality. “For me, the big story is that Jews remain seekers of meaning and community. What our Auerbach grants do is create new portals for Jewish community and meaning,” said Cyd Weissman, Reconstructing Judaism’s vice president for Innovation and Impact.

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Reconstructionist Affiliates, Rabbis Push for More Just Immigration System

Rooted in the Jewish textual tradition and lived experience, Reconstructionist communities are aiding immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers through direct service, education and advocacy.

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How Your Community Can Help Immigrants, Refugees and Asylum Seekers

Looking for ways your community can get involved in immigration issues, directly assist a family, or advocate for systematic change? This resource offer a number of concrete steps your community can take.

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