Photo by Shulamit Seidler-Feller

Rabbi Angela Warnick Buchdahl

Senior Rabbi Central Synagogue

Encounter is essential and transformative.

Rabbi Angela Warnick Buchdahl participated in an Encounter Intensive Leadership Seminar in August 2017. Of her motivation to participate, Rabbi Buchdahl says, “As a rabbi, I am deeply committed to my community being engaged with Israel, but I have seen how much harder it is to get people to engage and to care.  I am even willing to take “angry” over the apathy that I am seeing in young liberal communities.  It is a continuous professional challenge to help people feel connected to Israel on an emotional and intellectual level and to navigate the many viewpoints that people carry about Israel….”

Rabbi Buchdahl serves as the senior rabbi of Central Synagogue in New York City, the first woman to lead the large Reform congregation in its 175-year history. Rabbi Buchdahl first joined Central Synagogue as senior cantor in 2006. In 2014, she was chosen by the congregation to be senior rabbi. Rabbi Buchdahl was invested as a cantor in 1999 and also ordained as a rabbi in 2001 by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York where she was a Wexner Graduate fellow. She earned a B.A. in Religious Studies from Yale University in 1994. Born in Korea to a Jewish American father and a Korean Buddhist mother, Rabbi Buchdahl is the first Asian American to be ordained as cantor or rabbi in North America. Rabbi Buchdahl has been nationally recognized for her innovations in leading worship, which draw large crowds both in the congregation’s historic Main Sanctuary and via live stream and cable broadcast to viewers in more than 100 countries. Rabbi Buchdahl has been featured in dozens of news outlets including the Today Show, NPR, and PBS, and was listed as one of Newsweek’s “America’s 50 Most Influential Rabbis.” She serves on the boards of Auburn Theological Seminary, Avodah Jewish Service Corps, and the UJA-Federation of NY. Rabbi Buchdahl and her husband Jacob Buchdahl have three children.


Reflections on the ‘67 War (Yom Kippur 5778)