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In Memoriam – Rabbi Dr. Peter Knobel

In Memoriam – Rabbi Dr. Peter Knobel

Rabbi Peter Knobel

Rabbi Dr. Peter Knobel

Longtime Spertus Institute faculty member Rabbi Dr. Peter Knobel died on August 20, 2019, in Los Angeles, where he was was serving as an Interim Rabbi for Temple Israel of Hollywood. 

In a statement, Spertus Institute President and CEO Dr. Dean P. Bell said, "Peter Knobel was an outstanding scholar and a marvelous teacher, who offered a wide range of courses at Spertus over the past two decades. He was a guiding light for students enrolled in masters and doctoral programs in Jewish Studies, especially around issues of Jewish ethics, bioethics, identity, and prayer and liturgy. He was a close friend and a valued colleague, and his commitment to students, interfaith dialogue, and professional training will be greatly missed."

For much of his career, Rabbi Dr. Peter Knobel was the Senior Rabbi of Beth Emet The Free Synagogue in Evanston, Illinois, where he encouraged interaction between clergy and congregants with the goal of infusing Jewish meaning into the lives of individuals and the community. More recently, he served as the Interim Senior Rabbi of Chicago's Temple Sholom and Temple Judea in Coral Gables.

In addition to his congregational responsibilities, he served in a variety of important leadership roles nationally and locally in the Chicago-area community.

Nationally, he was president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR), Chair of the Liturgy and Reform Practice Committee, and a member of committees on human sexuality, homosexuality and the rabbinate, and patrilineal descent. He served on the board of both the Union for Reform Judaism and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and was a member of the National Interreligious Leadership Initiative on Peace in the Middle East. He was the editor of Gates of the Seasons: A Guide for the Jewish New Year.

Locally, he has served as president of The Chicago Board of Rabbis and the Chicago Association of Reform Rabbis, and was active in the Evanston Downtown Clergy Association.

To his wife Elaine, his children and grandchildren, family, friends, colleagues, and congregants, the Spertus Institute community extends our deepest condolences. Y’hi zikhrono livraha. May his memory be an eternal blessing.


Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Funeral and Shiva Information

Rabbi Knobel's funeral will be held Monday, August 26 at 10 am at Beth Emet The Free Synagogue, 1224 Dempster, Evanston, IL 60202. The interment will follow at Memorial Park Cemetery in Skokie.

The funeral service will be livestreamed on the Beth Emet Facebook page.

The family will be sitting shiva at Beth Emet on Monday, August 26 from 3-6 and 7-9 pm and on Tuesday from 6-9 pm. Minyan services will be held at 7:30 pm both nights.

Donations in Rabbi Knobel's memory can be made to Beth Emet.