Rabbi Yaakov Dov Bleich (born October 19, 1964) is an American-born rabbi. And the chief rabbi of Kyiv and all of Ukraine since 1990 and serves as vice-president of the World Jewish Congress since 2009.
In 1990, Rabbi Bleich was appointed by the Jewish Communities of Ukraine as Chief Rabbi of Kyiv and Ukraine. Since his arrival in Ukraine, Bleich has been instrumental in founding the Kyiv Jewish City Community, the Union Of Jewish Religious Organizations of Ukraine, the first Jewish day school in Ukraine, 3 yeshivas, 3 kollels, 2 cheders, a Beis Yaakov for girls, the first Jewish orphanage and boarding school in Ukraine, 1st and only Jewish summer Camp in Ukraine, Morasha Jewish Students Center for Students from around Ukraine, the Chesed Avot welfare society of Kyiv, and the Magen Avot social services network of Ukraine.
In 2005 he was one of three contenders for the role of chief rabbi, alongside Chabad Lubavitch appointees Azriel Chaikin (appointed 2002) and Moshe Reuven Azman (appointed 2005). There is also a Progressive (Liberal/Reform) Chief Rabbi of Kiev and Ukraine, Alexander Dukhovny. But Bleich has always been recognized by the government as Chief Rabbi of Kyiv and Ukraine. As such Bleich is a co founder and leader of the Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations.
In 2018, Kievan weekly magazine Focus named Bleich among the most "powerful foreigners" in the country.
- biography – Hillel Levinson
- Rabbi Yaakov Bleich, Vice-President – World Jewish Congress website
- Ukrainian community split over chief rabbi, Vladimir Matveyev, Phoenix Jewish News, October 25, 2005
- Breaking News – JTA, Jewish & Israel News
- https://kresy.pl/wydarzenia/sambor-uroczyste-odsloniecie-krzyza-ku-czci-oun-upa-poswieconego-przez-abpa-szewczuka-z-udzialem-zwierzchnika-ukrainskiej-cerkwi-video-foto/ (in Polish)
- In Sambir, abuse was replaced by abuse — a monument to the heroes of the OUN-UPA was opened in the cemetery with the graves of the Jews they killed (in Russian)
- https://nk.org.ua/ukraina/palachi-i-jertvyi-vo-lvovskoy-oblasti-osvyatili-pamyatnik-oun-upa-ustanovlennyiy-na-evreyskom-kladbische-202907 (in Russian)
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