Rabbi Ruth Gelfarb has a B.A. with honors from Harvard College and received a Masters of Arts in Hebrew Letters and Rabbinic Ordination from HUC – JIR . While at HUC-JIR, Rabbi Gelfarb was commissioned as an officer in the US Navy (Chaplain-Retired) and received the Stephen Pierce award for counselling excellency.
Rabbi Gelfarb is certified through the Institute for Jewish Spirituality in Jewish Mindfulness and Meditation Practice.
Rabbi Gelfarb is passionate about social justice, teaching, Jewish spirituality and making connections with world Jewry. Prior to joining Har HaShem, Rabbi Gelfarb served as the Director of Service at American Jewish World Service, Program Director at the Chicago Foundation for Women, and as the Senior Jewish Educator at the University of Chicago’s Hillel. While a rabbinic student, Rabbi Gelfarb interned at Congregation Beth Simchat Torah, the world’s largest synagogue for LGBTQ Jews and their families.
She has also travelled to Jewish communities in Ethiopia, Turkey, Israel, France, Argentina, El Salvador as well as to India, Nepal, Thailand and Ghana.
Rabbi Gelfarb, a New York native, lives in Boulder with her husband Tom Hopson, an atmospheric scientist, and their rescue dog, Cappy.
Rabbi Gelfarb joined the Har HaShem community in 2011. Presently, Rabbi Ruth E. Gelfarb assists the clergy team in conversions and providing pastoral care. She also leads our monthly Tikkun Middot/ soul trait program, our monthly contemplative Shabbat experiences and our Women of Har HaShem Rosh Hodesh group. A master educator, she enjoys teaching mindfulness and Jewish history, philosophy, and poetry.