The Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities offers enthusiastic congratulations to our friend, Rabbi Israel Zoberman, as he marks the 40th anniversary of his ordination this month. Among many well-deserved recognitions for his leadership and outreach, Rabbi Zobermanreceived VCIC’s Humanitarian Award in 2004.
Born in Kazakhstan in the former Soviet Union, Rabbi Zoberman was the son of Polish Holocaust survivors. Reared in Haifa, Israel, he came to the United States in 1966. Zoberman is the only rabbi to earn a doctorate in Pastoral Care and Counseling from Chicago’s McCormick Theological Seminary, affiliated with the Presbyterian Church U.S.A. A resident of Virginia since 1981, he served one year as Associate Rabbi at Ohef Sholom Temple in Norfolk before founding Congregation Beth Chaverim, the first Reform synagogue in Virginia Beach. For a decade, Beth Chaverim was the only synagogue in the world to meet at a Catholic facility, The Church of Ascension in Virginia Beach.
During his tenure, Rabbi Zoberman has been active in a number of interfaith causes, including the Virginia Beach Human Rights Commission and the Virginia Beach Clergy Association. He has also led many Jewish organizations and committees. In all that he does, he brings unparalleled enthusiasm, integrity, and commitment.
For all of his contributions, we thank Rabbi Israel Zoberman!