Dear Tanenbaum Community,
Most recently awarded to global peacebuilding leaders like Former Secretary-General of the UN, Ban Ki-Moon, the Rabbi Marc H. Tanenbaum Award for the Advancement of Interreligious Understanding celebrates individuals who dedicate their work towards fostering respect across religious difference.
This year, we are honored to bestow this award to our very own Judith Banki.
A close confidant and colleague of our namesake, Rabbi Marc H. Tanenbaum, Judy has profoundly shaped Jewish and Christian relations through her work in accurately depicting Jews and Judaism in religious text and pioneering textbook studies that helped lay the groundwork for Catholic-Jewish reconciliation.
Judy has served as the Associate National Director of Interreligious Affairs for The American Jewish Committee, and as editor of the Interreligious Newsletter. Adding to her extensive list of achievements, Judy authored “The Image of the Jews in Catholic Teaching,” a memorandum that helped pave the way for the historic declaration, Nostra Aetate, adopted at the Second Vatican Council. For this work, and all her achievements that followed, Judy was awarded an honorary doctorate from Seton Hall University in 2001. The Council of Centers on Jewish-Christian Relations awarded her its Shevet Achim Award in 2009, given for outstanding contributions to Jewish-Christian relations.
Today, Judy continues to share her plethora of knowledge and expertise not only with us at Tanenbaum, but also as a distinguished lecturer at highly-regarded universities and interfaith conferences. Witnessing her direct contributions to the history of interreligious affairs, Judy inspires us to protect and advance the well-being of all to embrace their full identities.
We are grateful to be the organization that celebrates Judy with this award, and to continue curating her scholarship so the world can access the tremendous knowledge she has shared over the years.
With her ongoing guidance today, and during the founding of Tanenbaum, to celebrate Tanenbaum is to celebrate Judy!
Rev. Mark Fowler