Ridgewood A Renamed for Jehuda Reinharz

Photo by Mike Lovett

In recognition of the many contributions President Emeritus Jehuda Reinharz, PhD’72, H’11, has made to Brandeis over more than 30 years as an administrator and professor, the Board of Trustees voted to name Ridgewood A residence hall the Jehuda Reinharz Residence Hall.

“By any measure, Jehuda transformed the university,” President Fred Lawrence said in announcing the trustees’ action. “During his nearly 17-year tenure as president, he led an unprecedented campuswide expansion, including 36 endowed faculty and staff positions, 29 new or renovated campus buildings, and 17 new research centers and institutes.”

Over the course of Reinharz’s presidency, the university also raised $1.2 billion, and its endowment more than quadrupled.

“Ever since my graduate school days at Brandeis, beginning in 1968, I heard about the inadequacies of student residences,” Reinharz said in acknowledging the honor. “Ridgewood was beloved but needed major renovations, and we were able to raise the funds to create state-of-the-art residence halls there.

“I am proud to have my name attached to this residence hall,” he said, “and I am grateful to President Lawrence and the Board of Trustees for honoring me in this way.”

Born in Haifa, Israel, Reinharz immigrated to the United States in 1961 as a teenager. He earned concurrent bachelor’s degrees from Columbia University and the Jewish Theological Seminary, a master’s degree in medieval Jewish history from Harvard University and a doctorate in modern Jewish history from Brandeis.

After founding the department of Judaic studies at the University of Michigan, Reinharz came to Brandeis in 1982 to become the Richard Koret Professor of Modern Jewish History. Two years later, he was named director of the Tauber Institute for the Study of European Jewry, then founded the Jacob and Libby Goodman Institute for the Study of Zionism and Israel. From 1991 to 1994, he served as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. In 1994, he was named the seventh president of the university.

In addition to serving as president emeritus, Reinharz is the director of the Tauber Institute and the president of the Mandel Foundation.

— Charles A. Radin