Rabbi Cary Kozberg
Meet JPFO's Rabbinical Director

Rabbi Cary Kozberg was ordained from the Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion in 1977. He currently serves as Rabbi of Temple Sholom in Springfield Ohio, which was also his first rabbinical position. In addition to his congregational experience, Rabbi Kozberg has served as the Executive Director at Hillel at the University of Texas at Austin (his alma mater).

For most of his career, Rabbi Kozberg specialized in long-term care chaplaincy.
A published author and poet, he has presented workshops and seminars around the country, and is a nationally recognized resource on the spiritual, emotional, and psychological challenges that face older adults and their families and caregivers. Rabbi Kozberg is a Board-Certified Chaplain, and a member of the National Association of Jewish Chaplains, having received that organization's "Chaplain of the Year" Award in 2012. He is also a Past Chair of the Forum on Religion Spirituality and Aging and has contributed articles and book chapters to many different publications.

Although growing up in a typical Jewish, liberal Democrat home, Rabbi Kozberg believes that conservative political values—personal responsibility, equality before the law, reverence for G-d and His laws for humanity—are most consistent with teaching and living authentic Jewish values.

Recent attacks on Jewish institutions and individual Jews have turned his attention to advocating for a more robust focus on educating Jews in the ethics and practical aspects of personal and community self-defense. He strongly advocates that this be included in religious school curricula, and that Jews who are able learn about responsible firearm ownership and use. He believes that in addition to having professional law enforcement present when Jewish programs are occurring, individual Jews who are willing and able should also be a part of an institution's security team. To this end, he has gone through extensive training and currently serves as the shomer (guard) at the shul where he davens (prays) on Shabbos morning.

In early 2022, Rabbi Kozberg decided to serve as JPFO's Rabbinic Director, providing a solid moral compass and advice as the organization grows and expands its activities. His insightful commentaries (he is a prolific writer, check online) will be appearing in JPFO's Bill of Rights Sentinel newsletter, and on our website and regular eblasts. Welcome aboard!

(This bio is available for download as a PDF file.)


Watch the following video "Jews Guns and Self Defense",
a thirty minute interview from February 9th, 2022:


Watch this special presentation below by Rabbi Cary Kozberg
from Temple Shalom in Springfield, Ohio. July 2021


Back to Top