Jewish Women's History — The Decade in Review

Since we celebrated the beginning of a new millennium, Jewish women have continued to make important “firsts” in a variety of fields, and have made their voices heard in the Jewish community, in American culture and politics, and in forums around the world. Here are just some of the important events of this decade in Jewish women’s history. Please do add other important events and accomplishments in the comments.

In religion:

September 21, 2001 — Jewish Women Watching declare “Sexism is a sin.”

October 6, 2003 — Aviel Barclay becomes first female Torah scribe.

May 14, 2004 — Mayyim Hayyim], a progressive community mikveh, opens.

May 5, 2006 — Haviva Ner-David is ordained as the first Orthodox woman rabbi, although she was not given the title of “rabbi.”

February 19, 2009 — Sara Hurwitz completed the required course of study in Yoreh Deah to become an Orthodox spiritual leader.

June 6, 2009 — Alysa Stanton ordained as first African-American female rabbi.


Read about the decade in Jewish women’s accomplishments in the categories of community, politics, arts and culture, education and sports here.

Leah Berkenwald is the online communications specialist at the Jewish Women’s Archive, and a contributor to its Jewesses With Attitude blog, which cross-posts weekly with the Sisterhood.

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