Rabbi John L. Rosove assumed his duties as Senior Rabbi of Temple Israel of Hollywood in November 1988. A native of Los Angeles, he earned a BA in Art History from UC Berkeley (1972), a Masters in Hebrew Letters from HUC-JIR, LA (1976), Rabbinic Ordination from HUC-JIR, NY (1979), and a Doctor of Divinity from HUC-JIR, LA (2004).
His mission has been to build Jewish community and draw Jews and their families closer to God, the Torah, Jewish tradition, the Jewish people, and the State of Israel as a Jewish national home. He regards social justice work and high ethical practices as essential core Jewish religious values.
John is the National Chairman of the Association of Reform Zionists of America (ARZA – the Zionist arm of the Union for Reform Judaism representing 1.5 million American Reform Jews). As ARZA Chairman he has a seat on the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations (CPMAJO), the Board of Governors and Vaad HaPoel of the World Zionist Organization (WZO), the American Zionist Movement (AZM), and the Executive Committee of ARZENU (the international Reform Zionist Organization).
John served as national co-Chair of the Rabbinic Cabinet of J Street (2011-2016), a pro-Israel pro-peace political and educational organization in Washington, D.C., advocating for a two-state solution to the Israel and Palestinian conflict. He is now a member of the Executive Rabbinic Cabinet of J Street.
He serves as well on the Board of the American Friends of the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism (IMPJ) and the Advisory Committee of the Daniel Center of Tel Aviv. He is an International Vice-Chair of Rabbis for Women of the Wall (WOW) and a member of the Israel Committee of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR). He was a delegate on the ARZA slate at the 2015 World Zionist Congress in Jerusalem.
John was the 2002 Recipient of the World Union for Progressive Judaism International Humanitarian Award and has received special commendation from the State of Israel Bonds. In 2013 he was honored by J Street at its Fifth Anniversary Celebration in Los Angeles.
He and Temple Israel of Hollywood formed three twin synagogue relationships with Israeli Reform synagogue centers at Kehillat Mevasseret Zion, Congregation Darchei Noam in Ramat Hasharon and Kehillat Chodesh v’Chol in Holon. He also initiated sister synagogue partnerships with two Progressive Synagogues in Kiev and Kharkov, Ukraine between 2000 and 2004.
During his tenure Rabbi Rosove has overseen the rebirth of Temple Israel of Hollywood and spearheaded a number of new education and social action projects including the Temple’s Day School (established 1989) and Big Sunday Weekend of Service that puts 50,000 Los Angelenos to work each year. He has been an advocate for liturgical change and stronger adult learning, and inspired Temple Israel’s participation in the Synagogue 2000 program. He oversaw the creation of the Temple’s High Holyday Machzor and its Shabbat and Festival Siddur. Between 2012 and 2014 the congregation renovated its entire facility, except the historic Nussbaum Sanctuary, with the design firm of Koning-Eizenberg Architects. The project included the construction of a new modern Chapel, a state of the art theater and concert hall, and an extensive fine Judaica and Jewish arts collection.
John is the author of “Why Judaism Matters – Letters of a Liberal Rabbi to his Sons and the Millennial Generation” to be published in the Spring of 2107 by Jewish Lights Publishing, a division of Turner Publishing Company.
John writes a regular blog that appears at the Los Angeles Jewish Journal (http://www.jewishjournal.com/rabbijohnrosovesblog), and he posts on both the Jewish Journal site and on this blog two or three times weekly (https://rabbijohnrosove.wordpress.com/).
John has written a series of 8 Jewish Life Cycle Guides that are posted on the TIOH web-site (http://www.tioh.org). The Guide “Preparing for Jewish Burial and Mourning” also appears on the web-site of Hillside Memorial Park and Mortuary in Los Angeles. (http://hillsidememorial.org/jewish-lifecycle-guide/).
John and his wife, Barbara, are the parents of two sons, Daniel (age 31) and David (age 26). Contact Rabbi Rosove