in memory of belda kaufman lindenbaum

What is Beit Midrash Har'el?

About Us

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Our History

Founded in 2013 by Rabbi Herzl Hefter, Beit Midrash Har’el is the only orthodox program where women and men study together to become Rabbis. Our approach is based on providing qualified and motivated students equal access to the Torah and our tradition while also providing equal recognition for accomplishment in learning and intellectual achievement.

Our mission

Beit Midrash Har’el aims to grapple with the challenges that modernity presents to Halacha and to offer a new paradigm for religious Jewish life – combining a firm commitment to tradition, a fresh look at the hermeneutics of Halacha, a multi-disciplinary approach, and an embrace of intellectual honesty. 

What makes us unique is that we do not shy away from the thorny issues emerging from contemporary sensibilities of fairness and equality that challenge orthodoxy today.  Our vision is to present a framework for Halacha and religious values that is authentic, compassionate, inclusive, God-conscious, and compelling.  


The Beit Midrash is currently located in the Ohel Nechama Synagogue near the Jerusalem Theater in Jerusalem. To arrange to visit Beit Midrash Har’el, please contact us at [email protected].

meet the team

Beit Midrash Har’el Leadership Team

Rabbi Herzl Hefter


Rabbi Herzl Hefter

Sharon Lauffer


Sharon Laufer


Joseph C. Gelb

Chairman of the Board

Rabbi Herzl Hefter

Founder & Rosh Beit Midrash

Robert Carroll

Executive & Amuta Member

Ezra Korman

Executive & Amuta Member

Miriam Zussman

Executive & Amuta Member

Scott Apfelbaum

Amuta (Board) Member

Joel Silber

Amuta (Board) Member

Dr. Shmuel Wygoda

Amuta (Board) Member

Rabbi Herzl Hefter

Rabbi Herzl Hefter
Rabbi Herzl Hefter is the founder and Rosh Beit Midrash Har’el in memory of Belda Kaufman Lindenbaum, in Jerusalem. It is a beit midrash for advanced rabbinic studies for men and women. He is a graduate of Yeshiva University where he learned under the tutelage of Rabbi Yosef Dov Soloveichik זצ”ל , and received smikha from Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein זצ”ל at Yeshivat Har Etzion where he studied for ten years. Rabbi Hefter taught Yoreh De’ah to the Kollel fellows at the Gruss Kollel of Yeshiva University and served as the head of the Bruria Scholars Program at Midreshet Lindenbaum. He also taught at Yeshivat Mekor Chaim in Moscow and served as Rosh Kollel of the first Torah MiZion Kollel in Cleveland, Ohio. He has written numerous articles related to modernity and Hasidic thought.