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Reform Rabbis Name Denise Eger as First LGBT Chief

The Central Conference of American Rabbis, the rabbinical arm of the Reform movement, installed its first openly gay president, Rabbi Denise Eger.

Eger, 55, was inaugurated on Monday morning at the CCAR’s annual convention in Philadelphia. She succeeds Richard Block.

The founding rabbi of the Kol Ami synagogue in Los Angeles, Eger has been on the CCAR board of trustees for four years. She was ordained in 1988.

Eger came out in an interview with the Los Angeles Times in 1990. She is engaged to be married.

She also was the first female and openly gay president of the Southern California Board of Rabbis, and the founding president of the Lesbian, Gay & Bisexual Interfaith Clergy Association. Eger officiated at the first legal wedding in California for a lesbian couple, the Philadelphia Daily News reported.

Monday’s inauguration was scheduled to be followed by a session celebrating the 25th anniversary of CCAR’s Resolution on Homosexuality and the Rabbinate, which called for the ordination of gay rabbis.

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