Dr. Steven Brown to Become Head of School at Barrack Hebrew Academy in Philadelphia

Press Contact: Nina Jacobson
Office: (212) 678-8950
Email: nijacobson@jtsa.edu

October 25, 2007, New York, NY

Dr. Steven M. Brown

The Jewish Theological Seminary announced today that Dr. Steven M. Brown, dean of its William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education, has accepted the position of Head of School at the Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy in Philadelphia, where he lives, and will be leaving JTS at the end of June 2008.

Chancellor Arnold Eisen has appointed Dr. Alan Cooper, provost, and Dr. Carol Ingall, Dr. Bernard Heller Professor of Jewish Education, to serve as co-chairs of the search committee to find a successor to Dr. Brown.

Dr. Brown came to JTS in 1996 as director of the Melton Research Center for Jewish Education at JTS and assistant dean of the then newly formed Davidson School. He was appointed dean of The Davidson School in 2003 and has also continued to direct the Melton Research Center.

“Steve Brown has been an extraordinary leader of The Davidson School, and I have greatly enjoyed working with him and learning from him over the past eighteen months,” said Chancellor Eisen. "He has a remarkable grasp of the challenges facing Jewish education in America today and knows what we need to do in order to meet those challenges. Under his leadership The Davidson School has not only grown in every respect but increased its service to the Jewish community—whether in the area of leadership education, teacher training, or curriculum development. I value his wisdom and his friendship. We at JTS wish him well in his new duties as head of the Barrack Hebrew Academy and will continue to call on him for advice and inspiration.”

“I came from the field to the academy and now return to the field,” said Dr. Brown. “My twelve years at JTS have been among the most satisfying of my career. It has been the highest honor and privilege to lead the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education and the Melton Research Center. I must acknowledge Bill Davidson, whose vision and support have resulted in this graduate program of Jewish education that is second to none. I have learned and grown so much from my interactions with faculty, students, program directors, and two magnificent chancellors. I now wish to take much of what I have had the opportunity to contemplate, develop, pilot test, and evaluate and apply it to the Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy, an academically outstanding pluralistic day school that is poised to be a flagship institution in North America.”

Dr. Brown has extensive training in the practical application of educational research, along with years of experience as a teacher and an administrator. Under his leadership The Davidson School has grown to become the largest pluralistic graduate school of Jewish education in North America. Among his many accomplishments are the bridging of academy and work in the field through the creation of such programs as the Day School Leadership Training Institute and the interdenominational Leadership Institute for Congregational School Educators (in collaboration with Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion). He also facilitated numerous curricular projects, including Ma’alah, the highly successful early childhood Hebrew immersion program.

Editors/Reporters: For further information or to schedule an interview with Dr. Brown, please contact Sherry S. Kirschenbaum in the Department of Communications at (212) 678-8953.

Founded in 1886 as a rabbinical school, The Jewish Theological Seminary today is the academic and spiritual center of Conservative Judaism worldwide, encompassing a world-class library and five schools. JTS trains tomorrow's religious, educational, academic and lay leaders for the Jewish community and beyond.