Rabbi Dr. Ari Berman was elected Yeshiva University’s fifth president on November 15, 2016 and began his tenure in June 2017.
A gifted leader, scholar, and orator, Dr. Berman has a deep understanding of Yeshiva University and its unique culture after graduating with distinction from four of its schools. He earned his B.A. from Yeshiva College, his M.A. in Medieval Jewish Philosophy from the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, and his rabbinical ordination from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS). Following ordination, he was selected as a Fellow in RIETS’ post-ordination study program for its most promising students and future rabbinic leaders. His studies also included two years of learning at Yeshivat Har Etzion in Israel, under the tutelage of the seminal Jewish thinker and leader Rabbi Dr. Aharon Lichtenstein. After making aliyah to Israel in 2008, Dr. Berman completed his higher education with a Ph.D. in Jewish Thought at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, supervised by renowned philosopher Professor Moshe Halbertal.
Dr. Berman has a broad range of distinguished experience in the worlds of higher education and Jewish communal life. In 2000, he became Rabbi of The Jewish Center in New York City. Under his leadership, the congregation experienced a rise in all of its key metrics, including congregational satisfaction, membership, programming, services, outreach, public activities and financial strength. Simultaneous with his pulpit at the Jewish Center, Dr. Berman served as an Instructor of Talmud at Yeshiva College.
In 2013 he became Instructor of Jewish Thought at Midreshet Moriah, lecturing on the interface between Jewish law and philosophy, and exploring the manner in which central theological issues were understood and addressed in different periods throughout Jewish history.
In 2015, Dr. Berman was appointed head (Rosh ha-Merkaz) of Hechal Shlomo – Center of Jewish Heritage in Jerusalem, where he initiated a transformation of the historic organization into an international center for Jewish life, learning and leadership. He also served as a lecturer of rabbinic literature in Herzog College’s Jewish Studies Department and was selected to sit on its Executive Leadership Council, the governing body that establishes policies and sets direction for all major issues regarding the college’s operation.
Dr. Berman is an active and erudite spokesman for the Jewish community. He lectures widely throughout the U.S. and Israel, and has written numerous articles on subjects including current trends in Jewish thought and the future of Orthodoxy. He is married to Anita Berman and they have five children.