Women of Reform Judaism Honor Rabbi Shankman

headshot of Rabbi Sue Shankman

The last couple of months has been a whirlwind of activity for Rabbi Susan Shankman, as awards and accolades have been rolling in. In January, she graced the cover of Washington Jewish Week, in recognition of 50 years of female rabbis. In March, The Interfaith Council of Metropolitan Washington (IFC) honored her as a unanimous choice for this year’s cohort of “Women Leaders of Faith.”

But Rabbi Shankman isn’t only being acknowledged locally for her work. Honoring women who strengthen the voices of others, empower women, and promote progressive Jewish values, Women of Reform Judaism selected her for one of their 2022 Women Empowerment Awards.

Graphic for WRJ Women's Empowerment AwardsWRJ is recognizing 10 women from across the country for their actions in driving greater inclusion of biracial and trans Jewish communities, social justice, and an ongoing commitment to tikkun olam. Additionally, Rabbi Shankman heads one of the panel sessions, Leading from the Pulpit or the Podium: Using Your Position to Inspire and Create Social Change along with fellow honoree Ellen Cohen, member of Congregation Beth Israel in Houston, Texas, and moderator Susan Bass, Immediate Past President of WRJ. The event concludes with a keynote address from CNN Chief Political Correspondent Dana Bash. Tickets are still available and WRJ is also accepting tribute ads for the honorees if anyone is so inclined.

In her over 20 years at Washington Hebrew Congregation, Rabbi Shankman has been an advocate for civil rights, starting a SEA Change coalition (Study, Engage, Act) to foster a productive dialogue between Jewish and Black communities, working with Every Voice to get out the vote, and co-hosting “Sister Act Podcast,” a weekly interfaith conversation between a Jewish, Muslim, and Christian woman.

In addition to officiating services, life cycle events, and pastoral care and counseling, Rabbi Shankman coordinates the Confirmation program, works closely with the Women of WHC, focuses on programming for families with young children, outreach to interfaith families, engages in social justice work, and is dedicated to ongoing dialogue with the interfaith community. Rabbi Shankman was ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 2001.


This special event will honor women who strengthen the voices of others, focuses on empowering women, and promote progressive Jewish values. Join virtually on May 13, from 2-7 PM ET, with the VIP experience from 4:30 – 5 PM ET.

WRJ will also honor its Executive Director, Rabbi Marla J. Feldman, for 20 years of dedication, leadership, and advocacy within the Reform Movement. We will also welcome CNN Chief Political Correspondent Dana Bash and special musical guest, Fourtelling!