Rabbi Dr. Marc Angel is Founder and Director of the Institute for Jewish Ideas and Ideals (www.jewishideas.org), fostering an intellectually vibrant, compassionate and inclusive Orthodox Judaism. Rabbi Angel is Rabbi Emeritus of Congregation Shearith Israel, the historic Spanish and Portuguese Synagogue of New York City (founded 1654), where he has served since 1969. Author and editor of 27 books and numerous articles, he has won acclaim for his studies in Jewish history and thought. Among his recent books are: "Choosing to Be Jewish: The Orthodox Road to Conversion" (2005); "Foundations of Sephardic Spirituality: The Inner Life of Jews of the Ottoman Empire" (2006); "The Search Committee", a novel published in the spring of 2008; and "Maimonides, Spinoza and Us: Toward an Intellectually Vibrant Judaism", (2009). He has been active in a wide range of communal organizations, including the American Sephardi Federation, Jewish National Fund, HealthCare Chaplaincy, and UJA-Federation of New York; and is past president of the Rabbinical Council of America. He and Rabbi Avi Weiss have founded the International Rabbinic Fellowship, a worldwide association of Modern Orthodox rabbis. He earned his B.A., M.S. and Ph.D. from Yeshiva University, and received his rabbinical ordination from Yeshiva's Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. He also has an M.A. degree in English literature from City College of New York. Among his awards are the National Rabbinic Leadership Award of the Orthodox Union; the Rabbinical Award of the United Jewish Communities; the Finkle Award of the New York Board of Rabbis; and the National Jewish Book Award. He and his wife Gilda have three children and seven grandchildren. Their son, Hayyim, serves as Rabbi of Shearith Israel.