Courtesy of Maimonides School, Brookline, MA
A pivotal figure in the world of Modern Orthodox Judaism, Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik was born in Belarus, Russia to a rabbinical dynasty that dated back centuries. He earned a Ph.D. from the University of Berlin and then immigrated to Boston in the early 1930s. In 1941, Soloveitchik became the head of Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary at Yeshiva University in New York City. Soloveitchik ordained nearly two thousand rabbis and is credited with having strengthened the intellectual and ideological underpinnings of Modern Orthodoxy through his role as mentor, scholar, and spiritual leader. As a faculty member at Yeshiva Univsity, he advocated greater text study for Jewish women and initiated the college's first class in Talmud.