A native New Yorker, Rabbi Linda Henry Goodman was installed in March of 2012 as President of the New York Board of Rabbis. She is the first woman in the 131-year-history of the organization to hold this position. Rabbi Goodman has long been a leader in the community, outspokenly fighting to protect women’s reproductive rights and health care, and advocating for marriage equality in New York State. For her advocacy in social justice, the New York Board of Rabbis awarded her the Rabbi Israel and Libby Moshowitz Prize, named after the great rabbinic fighter for social justice. Currently Rabbi Goodman is an active participant the Reform Jewish Voice of New York State, and the Clergy Advisory Board of Concerned Clergy for Choice in Albany. She also received the Zagelbaum Award in Chaplaincy, primarily for her work on behalf of our city in the wake of 9/11. She also has just joined the Board of Trustees of UJA-Federation of New York.
Ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in New York, Rabbi Goodman was the first woman to serve on the rabbinic staff of Temple Emanu-El of New York, and went on from there to serve as Rabbi of the Nassau Community Temple of West Hempstead and Hillel Director and Jewish Chaplain at Adelphi University. She also has served on the Jewish Studies faculties of Molloy College and New York Theological Seminary. She has served on the Board of Trustees of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, and also on the CCAR’s Committee on Jewish Sexual Values and Resolutions Committee, and has served as the New York Regional Representative for the Women’s Rabbinic Network. Rabbi Goodman also holds an M.A. in Hebrew Literature and a Doctor of Ministry degree from Hebrew Union College. She has served as our Rabbi here at Union Temple since 1992.
A talented musician, Rabbi Goodman studied as an undergraduate at Queens College and The Mannes College of Music and earned an M.A. from Queens College, where she held a graduate teaching assistantship in the Music Department. She also served on the faculties of Mannes College, and SUNY Purchase. Music continues to be a tremendous source of inspiration to her, and has helped her to contribute significantly to the musical life of our congregation on an ongoing basis.
Rabbi Goodman’s husband, Rabbi Stephen Wise Goodman, is Rabbi of the Garden City Jewish Center. The Goodmans’ son Philip recently graduated Binghamton University.