About the Center for Sport and Jewish Life
The Center for Sport and Jewish Life is an independent initiative whose mission is to strengthen Jewish identity and Jewish community bonds by bringing to light the common journey and values found in sport and in Judaism. Of particular focus are Ahavat Torah (an affinity for Jewish learning/living) and Ahavat Israel (loyalty to the Jewish people).
Among the Center's initiatives are:
Founding director of the Center for Sport and Jewish Life is Rabbi Mitchell Smith, who is certified by the Association for Applied Sport Psychology as a Sport Psychology Consultant. He has worked with athletes, teams and coaches throughout the United States, Israel, and internationally, and serves as Director of Sport Psychology Services at Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, FL.
The president of the Center's Board of Directors is Burton Siegel, the Executive Director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Philadelphia.
Vice President is Dr. Edward Leibowitz, Associate Boys Basketball Coach, St. Patrick's High School, Elizabeth, NJ, and author of "It Takes More Than a Whistle to Coach Basketball".
Serving as Honorary Presidents of the Board are Alan H. (Bud) Selig, Commissioner of Major League Baseball, and Ralf Klein, Legendary Head Coach of Maccabi Tel Aviv Basketball and 2006 Israel Prize Laureate.
Serving on the Center's Advisory Board are:
Chad Baruch, Athletic Director, Yavneh Academy, Dallas TX
Ben Braun, Head
Men’s Basketball Coach, Rice University
Herb Brown, Assistant Coach, Atlanta
Rabbi Elliot Dorff, Ph. D., Rector, University of Judaism
Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach, Syracuse University
student-athlete, University of Pennsylvania
Tim Green, author, Fox Sports NFL
Analyst and former player, Atlanta Falcons
Aviva Kempner, Film Director,
Life and Times of Hank Greenberg
Fred Kipperman, Rand Corporation
Lenny Krayzelburg, 4-time Olympic gold medalist
Rabbi Harold Kushner, best-selling
Dr. Richard Lapchick, Executive Director, National Consortium for
Academics and Sports
Brent Novoselsky, former player, Minnesota Vikings and
Josh Pastner, Assistant
Men’s Basketball Coach, University of Arizona
Rabbi Arnold Rachlis, past president, Reconstructionist Rabbinical
Dr. Daniel Rosenberg, Chairman, Department of Physical Education,
David Schafer, Executive Director, Florida Holocaust Museum
Herb Sendek, Head Men’s Basketball Coach, Arizona State University
Track and Cross Country Coach, Florida Atlantic University
Dr. Judy Van Raalte,
President, Exercise and Sport Psychology Division, American Psychological
Bill Van Zyll, Director and General Manager, Ninteno/ Latin
Alan Veingrad, former player, Green Bay Packers and Dallas Cowboys
Dr. Robert Weinberg, Professor, Department of Physical Education and Sport
Studies, Miami University
Dr. David Yukelson, Coordinator of Sport Psychology
Services, Penn State University
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