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Emory professor, ethics scholar to be honored at other commencements

Emory Report | April 30, 2014

David R. Blumenthal and Jonathan Crane will be the recipients of honors at the commencement ceremonies of two colleges.

Blumenthal to receive honorary degree

David R. Blumenthal, Jay and Leslie Cohen Professor of Judaic Studies at Emory, will receive an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (RRC) at its commencement on June 1 at Temple Sinai in Dresher, Pennsylvania.

The degree is awarded by RRC to scholars and organizational leaders who have distinguished themselves in the pursuit of Reconstructionist ideals and who have made outstanding contributions to the Jewish community or to religious life in North America or Israel. Blumenthal is being honored in recognition of his contributions in the field of medieval Jewish philosophy and modern Jewish theology.

Several of Blumenthal's former Emory students have pursued rabbinical careers and have graduated from RRC. One of Blumenthal's former colleagues, Leila Gal Berner, a former visiting professor of religion at Emory, will receive an honorary Doctor of Divinity degree, also on June 1.

Crane to receive honorary degree from alma mater

Jonathan K. Crane, the Raymond F. Schinazi Junior Scholar of Bioethics and Jewish Thought at Emory's Center for Ethics, will receive an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from his alma mater, Wheaton College in Norton, Massachusetts, at its 179th commencement on May 17.

The degree is awarded in recognition of Crane's academic accomplishments, scholarly inquiry and commitment to education. Crane, a third-generation Wheaton graduate, majored in international relations and now holds five graduate degrees in international peace studies, Gandhian philosophy, Hebrew literature, rabbinics, and a PhD in religious studies. He also is an ordained rabbi.