National Press Club

Italy's First and Only Female Rabbi

Italy's First and Only Female Rabbi

August 13, 2015 10:00 AM

Location: Murrow Room

Seeking Equality for Women:
The Challenge of Being Italy’s First – and Only – Female Rabbi

Washington, DC – Rabbi Barbara Aiello – who serves Jews across Europe as an advocate for pluralistic Judaism – will address the challenges of serving as Italy’s first and only female rabbi at a National Press Club Newsmakers news conference on Thursday, August 13th.

In many parts of the Jewish world – notably in the U.S., Canada, Great Britain and in Israel itself – the number of female rabbis is increasing dramatically. Several rabbinical schools now boast classes that are 60 percent female. But as rabbi of the first active synagogue in Italy’s southernmost region, Calabria, Rabbi Aiello has faced not only the negative attitudes of her rabbinic colleagues, but the deep seated prejudice of northern Italians toward southern Italians that exists even today.

Rabbi Aiello serves Jews throughout Europe as a spokesperson for Pluralistic Judaism – a movement that deliberately blurs denominational lines and extends the hand of Jewish welcome to Jews of all backgrounds

From the untold story of the Ferramonti Concentration Camp where nearly four thousand Jews were saved by Italian soldiers and local villagers to the hills of Calabria where Italian families have stubbornly clung to their ancient Jewish roots, Rabbi Aiello, a first generation Calabrian Italian American, shares her story of self-discovery, struggle and triumph in a little known corner of the world.

This NPC Newsmakers news conference is scheduled for Thursday, August 13, 2015 at 10 a.m. in the club’s Zenger Room, on the 13th Floor of the National Press Building, 529 14th St. NW, Washington DC 20045.

Like all Newsmaker events, this news conference is open to credentialed press and NPC club members, free of charge. No advance registration is required.

Tony Gallo NPC Newsmakers Event Host
202 -544-6973,

For More Information On This Event, Contact:

Tony Gallo