Rabbi David Saperstein named senior policy adviser by Union for Reform Judaism
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Rabbi David Saperstein named senior policy adviser by Union for Reform Judaism

Veteran civil rights activist served as ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom under Obama

Reform movement leader Rabbi David Saperstein. (screen capture: YouTube/Union for Reform Judaism)
Reform movement leader Rabbi David Saperstein. (screen capture: YouTube/Union for Reform Judaism)

Rabbi David Saperstein has been named senior adviser for policy and strategy by the Union for Reform Judaism.

Saperstein, a veteran civil rights activist who served as director and counsel of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism for 40 years, will return to the URJ senior staff on April 1, the organization said in a statement.

For the last two years under President Barack Obama, Saperstein, 68, served as the US ambassador-at-large for international religious freedom, the nation’s top diplomat on religious freedom issues, working closely with members of Congress on both sides of the aisle.

Saperstein, who will continue to serve in his current role as director emeritus of the Religious Action Center, in his new position will work on high-level projects to help advance the Union of Reform Judaism’s core priorities, the organization’s statement said. Among his responsibilities will be speaking, writing and teaching on behalf of the URJ, and raising awareness and fundraising for the RAC and URJ’s initiatives in North America.

President Barack Obama signs an executive order extending work protection rights to LGBT employees of federal contractors, as Rabbi David Saperstein (left), director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, looks on, at the White House, on July 18, 2014. (photo credit: Hadar Susskind/Bend the Arc via JTA)
President Barack Obama signs an executive order extending work protection rights to LGBT employees of federal contractors, as Rabbi David Saperstein (left), director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, looks on, at the White House, on July 18, 2014. (photo credit: Hadar Susskind/Bend the Arc via JTA)
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