Rabbi Edward C. Bernstein began his service as Rabbi of Temple Torah in Boynton Beach, Florida in July, 2011.
He is thrilled to be a part of the Temple Torah family. He is excited about the opportunity to serve Temple Torah and help guide it towards becoming a more vibrant center of Jewish life in South Florida where people come for engaging services and programs and stay because the personal relationships.
Rabbi Bernstein was ordained in 1999 by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York City. He received bachelor degrees from Columbia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary in
American History and Bible, respectively. Rabbi Bernstein has studied extensively in Israel, including at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Yeshivat HaMivtar in Efrat, and The Schechter Institute in Jerusalem.
Since his ordination, he has participated in several highly selective rabbinic fellowship programs. He is an alumnus of STAR PEER (Synagogues: Transformation and Renewal/Professional Education for Excellence in Rabbis), an executive leadership and management program for recently ordained Rabbis, funded by the Shusterman Foundation. He is also an alumnus of the Legacy Heritage Rabbinic Enrichment Initiative at the Jewish Theological Seminary. He currently is a Greenfaith fellow, North America’s only comprehensive education and training program for clergy and laity as religious-environmental leaders.
Rabbi Bernstein has been recognized nationally for his work advocating for the environment and social justice, and he serves on the Social Justice Commission of the International Rabbinical Assembly . He also writes a blog on Judaism and the environment for the Huffington Post, a renowned online news and opinion journal.
Rabbi Bernstein is passionate in his support for the State of Israel as well as his commitment to a strong and vibrant Conservative Judaism in America, Israel and around the world. In this context, he serves on the board of MERCAZ USA , the Zionist arm of
the Conservative Movement in America, and he has attended two World Zionist Congresses in Jerusalem.
Rabbi Bernstein has previously served for four years as Associate Rabbi of Beth El Synagogue Center in New Rochelle, N.Y. There, he directed the adult education program, which received the United Synagogue Solomon Schechter Gold Award for Excellence. This program included an annual family retreat weekend that Rabbi Bernstein created, monthly adult learning services and an intensive adult B’nai Mitzvah program.
More recently, Rabbi Bernstein served for eight years as Rabbi of Congregation Shaarey Tikvah in Beachwood, OH. There, he spearheaded the formation of the Young Adults Chavura, which launched a significant initiative, City Fresh East at Shaarey Tikvah, a community supported agriculture (CSA) program. This initiative, in conjunction with City Fresh, was created to provide a more just and sustainable food system in Northeast Ohio. Rabbi Bernstein also launched Synaplex™ as a way to enhance Shabbat services and programming and to reinforce in a contemporary context the synagogue’s three-fold purpose as a Beit
Tefillah (House of Worship), Beit Midrash (House of Study) and Beit Knesset (House of Gathering).
During his tenure in Ohio, Rabbi Bernstein served as President of the Greater Cleveland Board of Rabbis. He also served on Community Relations Council of the Jewish Community Federation of Cleveland and on the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Education Center of Cleveland.
Rabbi Bernstein has had a lifelong connection to Conservative Judaism. He grew up in a traditional Conservative household in the Hyde Park section of Chicago’s South Side, attending Congregation Rodfei Zedek each Shabbat. As a teenager, he was an active member at the local, regional and international levels of United Synagogue Youth (USY), serving as the organization’s International Executive Vice President in 1989.
Rabbi Bernstein enjoys watching baseball, swimming, biking and playing with model trains. He especially enjoys spending time with his family. His wife, Ariella Reback, is an attorney and “slow food” entrepreneur. They have three children.