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Yom Sheini, 4 Sivan 5777

Rabbi SchechterRabbi Emeritus Philip E. Schechter

Born: New York City 1933
Married: Rabbi Liz Rolle
Children: Rabbi Sarah, Noa, Avichai, and Tal

University of Cincinnati, BA ‘55
Hebrew Union College, BHL, MAHL,’60 DD ‘75

While a student Rabbi Schechter worked for several summers as camp counselor at the Christian Herald Children’s Home, a program for economically challenged New York City youth, in Nyack, NY. In Cincinnati, Rabbi Schechter was active in the community, living and working at The Children’s Home, a residential care facility; the Findlay Street Neighborhood House, a church sponsored inner city interracial center; and was director of Camp Joy, a church and community sponsored interracial summer camp for inner city children. He also directed the Weekend Workcamp Program for the American Friends Service Committee (Quaker) in Ohio and Indiana. He was elected President of the Student Association of the Hebrew Union College.

Chaplain :

US Air Force, Strategic Air Command, ‘60-62

Rabbi Schechter served isolated Jewish service personnel on seven Air Force bases throughout the Western United States, including California, Idaho, Kansas, Montana and New Mexico. At the same time, he served the civilian Jewish communities of Salina, Kansas; Great Falls, Montana and Roswell, New Mexico


Temple Oheb Shalom, Baltimore, MD ‘62-64 (assistant)

Rabbi Schechter became active in the Civil Rights Movement in Baltimore and was arrested for trespassing at a segregated amusement park along with an interracial protest group which included Roman Catholic, Protestant and Jewish Clergy. The incident, which was covered by the media nationwide, brought to an end the last vestiges of segregation in Maryland.

Temple Beth Israel, Atlantic City, NJ ‘64-70

Rabbi Schechter was very active and well known in the community before casinos arrived in Atlantic City. He was co-chair of the Atlantic City Human Rights Forum, an interfaith-interracial organization that called attention to the significant racial problems existing in the government and hotel industry in Atlantic City at the time. In honor of his activities he was made a vice president of the Atlantic City chapter of the NAACP and represented the chapter at the National Convention of the NAACP. He also participated in the March on Montgomery, under the leadership of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and organized local community support for the Freedom Democratic Party of Mississippi at the National Democratic Convention in Atlantic City.

Temple Shaaray Tefila, New York City ‘70

Rabbi Schechter’s brief tenure in New York during the highly controversial days of the Viet Nam War was featured in the media including Time Magazine, The New York Times, Rolling Stone and the Jerusalem Post.

Temple Shaari Emeth, Manalapan, NJ ‘71-'00

Rabbi Schechter was honored in May 1996 for his 25 years of service to Temple Shaari Emeth, a Reform congregation, which grew from 160 to over 800 families during his tenure. He retired as the Senior Rabbi on June 30, 2000 and is now the Rabbi Emeritus of the congregation.

During his tenure as Senior Rabbi at Temple Shaari Emeth, Rabbi Schechter served as chair of the Central Conference of American Rabbis Committee on Health, and for many years as one of its delegates to the North American Board for the World Union for Progressive Judaism.

He was also a member of the NJ Assn. of Reform Rabbis; the Clergy Assn. of Freehold, NJ (chairperson for two years); the Board of Trustees, CentraState Medical System, Freehold, NJ.

He served on the following committees: Chaplain Search, Pastoral Care, BioEthics, Human Resources, Quality of Patent Care, Applewood Estates, Assisted Living Building. He also chaired the BioEthics Committee for several years.

He also was the founding chair of the Freehold Township Human Rights Council.