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RABBI BROWN's biography

Rabbi Jeffrey Brown became Rabbi of Scarsdale Synagogue Temples Tremont and Emanu-El on July 1, 2012.

Jeff was born and raised in the Philadelphia suburbs (go Phillies!) of New Jersey.  He is a proud product of the Reform Movement: he spent the summers of his early teen years at the URJ’s Camp Harlam in Pennsylvania.  Jeff was active in NFTY during high school, and served on the staff of the URJ’s Olin Sang Ruby Union Institute camp during college. 

Jeff studied English Literature and Judaic Studies at the George Washington University in Washington, DC.  Highlights of Jeff’s time in college included working for a year on the staff of a Florida congressman, and his first trip to Israel, where he studied at Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies during the summer of 1999. Jeff graduated GW Phi Beta Kappa in May 2000.

During Rabbinical School at the Cincinnati campus of Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion, Rabbi Brown was privileged to serve as Student Rabbi of Congregation Ohr Shalom of Grand Junction, ColoradoCongregation Beth Israel of Colleyville, Texas; and the Hillel at Miami University of Ohio.  Jeff earned numerous academic prizes, a Master of Arts in Hebrew Letters degree, and Rabbinic ordination from the College - Institute in 2005.  

His Rabbinical School Senior Thesis, on the subject of Reform Communal Dietary Policies, has garnered significant national attention.  The entire original thesis can be found here.  Rabbi Brown was asked to adapt parts of it for the document entitled "Creating Synagogue Food Policy," published by the Union for Reform Judaism in conjunction with Rabbi Eric Yoffie's 2009 Biennial Sermon.  In 2011, Jeff was also invited to adapt material from the thesis for a chapter of The Sacred Table: Creating a Jewish Food Ethic (edited by Rabbi Mary Zamore) as well as to serve as a member of the book's editorial task force.  The publication was named a Finalist for the 2011 National Jewish Book Award.

Rabbi Brown served as Assistant and then Associate Rabbi of Temple Solel in Cardiff, California from 2005-2012.  Highlights of his time in San Diego included leading a social justice pilgrimage to the Jewish community of Cuba in 2010, active membership in the San Dieguito Interfaith Ministerial Association (SDIMA), serving on the Board of Directors of Jewish Family Service of San Diego, and several terms as both Vice President and Treasurer of the San Diego Rabbinical Association (SDRA).  His innovative use of technology in the areas of outreach to college students and adult education during his tenure at Temple Solel earned him several national awards from the Union for Reform Judaism in 2011.

In February of 2002, Jeff married Amy Bebchick. They were blessed to welcome daughter Siona into the world in the summer of 2006, and son Avi in the summer of 2010.

Additional Publications by Rabbi Brown:

A Review of The Modern Men's Torah Commentary by Rabbi Jeffrey Salkin, Appearing in the Spring 2010 issue of the CCAR Journal.

“Political Civility and E Pluribus Unum” - An OpEd appearing in the San Diego Union Tribune, January 20, 2011.

“Preaching Against the Text: An Argument In Favor of Restoring Leviticus 18 to Yom Kippur Afternoon," Appearing in the Spring 2012 issue of the CCAR Journal, and in The Sacred Encounter: Jewish Perspectives on Sexuality (ed. L. Grushcow, CCAR Press, 2014).

“Reflecting on the Journey: Officiating at Weddings When One Partner is not Jewish,” in Keeping Faith in Rabbinical Education (eds. Herring and Roscher), 2014.

Rabbi Brown can be reached at  For more information about his rabbinate, please click here.

Wed, July 24 2024 18 Tammuz 5784