Feb 23: Black Jews Roundtable and Lecture

Roundtable Discussion on Black Jews and Judaism

On February 23, the Initiative for Global Jewish Communities held a private roundtable discussion on Black Jews and Judaism. Experts on the topic flew in from across America and Israel to participate.


Roundtable Members Included:
Sar Ahmadiel ben Yehuda, Spokesperson for the African Hebrew Israelites of Jerusalem
Michael Bender, Florida International University
Marla Brettschneider, University of New Hampshire
Jonatas Dasilva, Florida International University
Jake Dorman, University of Kansas
Levi Friedman, Director of Chabad FIU
Capers Funnye, Beth Shalom B'nai Zaken Ethiopian Hebrew Congregation, Chicago
John Jackson, University of Pennsylvania
Nathan Katz, Florida International University
Abe Lavender, Florida International University
Len Lyons, writer and researcher, author of The Ethiopian Jews of Israel
Bill Miles, Northeastern University
Tudor Parfitt, Florida International University
Galit Shashoua, Florida International University
Aman de Sondy, University of Miami
Bonita Sussman, Kulanu
Gerald Sussman, Kulanu

Public Lecture by Rabbi Capers Funnye: The Black Jewish Community in Chicago from 1918-Present

The Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU celebrated Black History Month with a standing-room-only event with keynote speaker Rabbi Capers C. Funnye, Jr., called “Obama’s Rabbi” by The New York Times because of his famous kin (First Lady Michelle), and a panel of internationally-renowned scholars and leaders who discussed the experience of Black Jews in America and Israel.


Rabbi Capers Funnye with Dr. Nathan Katz, Academic Director of the Jewish Museum of Florida, FIU


Panel Members (from left to right): John Jackson, Bill Miles, Jake Dorman, Tudor Parfitt, Marla Brettschneider, Sar Ahmadiel ben Yehuda, Len Lyons

For more information on the event, please email Gainya St Clair gstclair@fiu.edu