The community is invited to join Temple Beth-El of Great Neck for a special virtual Shabbat service with guest speaker Anat Hoffman on Saturday, Jan. 9, at 10 a.m.
Hoffman has spoken at Temple Beth-El many times, always inspiring attendees, as she touches upon a vast array of subjects affecting Israeli society today, including gender discrimination, Israel diaspora relations, Jewish hate groups, the status of non-Othodox Jews, LGBTQ equity and Arab-Israeli collaboration, especially now in the face of challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Israeli activist has served as executive director of the Israel Religious Action Center (IRAC) since 2002. Her position places her at the forefront of the effort to advance religious pluralism in the State of Israel.
As IRAC’s executive director, Hoffman has fought (and won) recognition of Reform and Conservative conversions by the state; and led the struggle against gender segregation in the public domain, including on public buses, airplanes and a national radio station. In her teens, she was Israel’s swimming champion, where she learned to dive headfirst into the deep end. This has given her the strength to carry out her work both in the past and today.
For more than three decades, Hoffman has led Women of the Wall in its struggle toward gender equality at the Western Wall, the holiest site of the Jewish faith. She also served on Jerusalem’s city council for 14 years, heading the opposition. In this role, she pushed relentlessly for equality and tolerance in a city run by the powerful Orthodox block.
She was selected as Person of the Year by Haaretz in 2013 and chosen as one of the 50 most influential Jews by the Jerusalem Post in 2014. Globes named her as one of Israel’s top women activists in 2018.
Hoffman earned her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from UCLA and her master’s degree in Psychology from Bar-Ilan University. She is a mother of three, has one grandchild and lives with her partner in Jerusalem.
Temple Beth-El is Great Neck’s oldest synagogue, which celebrated its 90th anniversary last year. Learn more at www.tbegreatneck.org or by calling 516-487-0900.