About Rabbi Joshua O. Haberman

Rabbi Haberman, z"l, founded the Foundation for Jewish Studies in 1983 and continued to lead the organization as Chairman of the Board through the summer of 2017.

He was one of six rabbis in his immediate family: three Reform, one Conservative and two Orthodox (one of whom is his son). Rabbi Haberman and Maxine, his wife of over 70 years, maintained a second home in Jerusalem. Maxine is originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, and is a retired geriatric social worker. They, as well as three of their four children, made aliyah many years ago and hold dual Israeli-American citizenship. They have 15 grandchildren and 20 great-grandchildren.

Rabbi Haberman was born in Vienna, Austria, and graduated from the University of Vienna. In 1938, the year of the Anschluss (the Nazi annexation of Austria), he was already a student at Vienna’s rabbinical seminary. An invitation by Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio enabled him to come to the United States, where he completed his studies and received ordination in 1945. After graduate work in Jerusalem, Rabbi Haberman earned a doctorate in modern Jewish philosophy at Hebrew Union College.

Rabbi Haberman served Reform congregations in Mobile, Alabama, Buffalo, New York and Trenton, New Jersey before he was elected Senior Rabbi of Washington Hebrew Congregation in Washington, D.C. Upon his retirement from Washington Hebrew in 1986, he became Rabbi Emeritus.

He taught as an adjunct professor at Rutgers, American, The George Washington, and Georgetown Universities, as well as at Washington Theological Union (Catholic) and the Wesley Theological Seminary (Methodist). Rabbi Haberman is a past president (1999) of The National Association of Retired Reform Rabbis, and served on the Board of Fellows of the Jewish Policy Center.