Dr. Ellis Rivkin is the Adolph S. Ochs Professor of
Jewish History Emeritus at Hebrew Union College-Jewish
Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Ohio. He was born
on 7 September 1918 in Baltimore, Maryland and
received his B.A. (with honors) from Johns Hopkins
University in 1941 and his Ph.D. in history from Johns
Hopkins University in 1946. He also attended the
Baltimore Hebrew College and was awarded the B.H.L.
degree in 1943.
After receiving his doctorate in 1946, Dr. Rivkin
served as the Cyrus Adler Post-Doctoral research
fellow until 1948 and taught Jewish history at Gratz
College from 1946-1949.
In 1949, Dr. Rivkin was appointed Assistant
Professor of Jewish History at the Hebrew Union
College-Jewish Institute of Religion. In 1953 he was
appointed Professor of Jewish History. In 1965 he
became the Adolph S. Ochs Professor of Jewish History.
Dr. Rivkin has served as Visiting Professor at
Antioch College (1963); Visiting Professor of Jewish
History, Dropsie University (1969); Visiting Professor
of Jewish History, University of Utah, (1973);
Visiting Professor, Judaic Studies, Southern Methodist
University (1977); Visiting Zwig Professor of Judaic
Studies, University of San Francisco (1984); and
Seinsheimer Professor of Jewish Studies at Spertus
In 1962, Dr. Rivkin was awarded a Simon Guggenheim
Fellowship to do archival research on the role of the
Jews in the development of early Capitalism in
In 1965, in conjunction with an American Council of
Learned Societies grant to read a paper entitled
â€œMarrano-Jewish Entrepreneurship and the Ottoman
Mercantilist Probe in the 16th Centuryâ€? at the Third
International Congress of Economic Historians in
Munich in 1965, Dr. Rivkin was granted an American
Philosophical grant to continue his research on the
role of the Jews in the development of early
capitalism in the Viennese archives.
In the course of his career, Dr. Rivkin has served
on the Editorial Boards of the Hebrew Union College
Annual and the Jewish Publication Society of America,
and has been a member of many honorary learned and
professional societies such as: Phi Beta Kappa, The
American Historical Association, The Economic History
Association, the Medieval Academy of America, the
Society of Biblical Literature, the American Academy
of Political and Social Science, the American Academy
of Religion, and the Central Conference of American
In 1966 Dr. Rivkin was elected Fellow of The
American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Dr. Rivkin has been awarded Honorary degrees by the
Baltimore Hebrew College (1975), the Hebrew Union
College (1989), and Spertus College of Jewish Studies
In 1977 Dr. Rivkin established The Globalist
Research Foundation, which has published his analyses
in the field of International Affairs with a special
focus on Israel and The Middle East in The Globalist
Newsletter, The Globalist Backgrounder, The Globalist
Spirit, and Letters From the Desk of Ellis Rivkin.
Dr. Rivkin has published five books:
1) Leon de Modena and the Kol Sahkal. Cincinnati,
OH; Hebrew Union College Press, 1952.
2) The Dynamics of Jewish History. Sarasota, FL:
New College, 1970.
3) The Shaping of Jewish History: A Radical New
Interpretation. New York, NY: Charles Scribnerâ€™s
4) A Hidden Revolution: The Phariseesâ€™ Search for
the Kingdom Within. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press,
5) What Crucified Jesus? Nashville, TN: Abingdon
And more than a hundred articles and reviews which
have appeared in The Jewish Quarterly Review, The
Hebrew Union College Annual, The Journal of Modern
History, The Canadian Historical Review, Commentary,
Judaism, and The Reconstructionist. He has also
presented many papers at scholarly conferences,
colloquia, and other fora.
Dr. Rivkin is now working on a book with the
tentative title The Sun Never Sets: Great Britainâ€™s
Post Imperial Superpower Role.
Dr. Rivkin has lectured widely in the U.S. and
abroad and has been especially active in
At the Hebrew Union College Dr. Rivkin has served
many terms as chairman of the Academic Senate and from
1977 until shortly before his retirement served as the
chairman of the Graduate Executive Committee.
In 1941 Dr. Rivkin married Zeida Zafren of
Baltimore, Maryland; they have two daughters, Roslyn
and Sharon, and four granddaughters.