Southern Utah University is proud to announce “Rabbi Shmuley” as its keynote Commencement speaker. Shmuley Boteach, an international leading relationship and values expert, is also one of the nation’s most prominent religious leaders and entertainment icons. He will speak to the graduates and guests of the Class of 2013 on Friday, May 3, at noon in the Centrum Arena.
Hailed as one of the world’s most gifted public speakers, Boteach’s insightful, direct and witty social commentary and ongoing efforts to encourage and uplift speak far beyond a Rabbi’s usual audience. Labeled “a cultural phenomenon” by Newsweek magazine and “the most famous rabbi in America” by The Washington Post, Boteach has been named one of the ten most influential rabbis in America, and his 29 books have all been international best-sellers, translated into 20 languages.
Of selecting Boteach to speak in this year’s Commencement, SUU President Michael Benson said, “Rabbi Shmuley has distinguished himself through his books, television appearances, weekly articles, and speeches as one of America's leading social and political commentators. His recent run for Congress — and his bid to become America's first rabbi in the U.S. House of Representatives — is evidence of his commitment to addressing important issues facing our society today.”
While his unabashed nature has earned both praise and criticism, Boteach’s work is prolific and speaks to a life devoted to faith, family and traditional values.
He is a highly sought-after television and radio guest and has appeared on shows ranging from The Today Show to The O’Reilley Factor to Dr. Phil, and everything in between, including regular appearances on CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC. He was also the subject of a full-length BBC documentary, “Moses of Oxford,” and has been profiled in many of the world's leading publications, including Time Magazine, Newsweek, The New York Times, The London Times, The L.A. Times, the Chicago Tribune and The Washington Post.
Praised by Dennis Prager as "possessing one of the most fertile minds of our generation," Rabbi Shmuley most recently published The Fed-Up Man of Faith: Challenging God in the Face of Suffering and Tragedy, tackling timeless questions of the nature of defeat and adversity. Prager wrote, “Shmuley Boteach has written many important books. This one may be his most courageous — and most influential, in that it may change the way more people think than any of his other already influential books, or, for that matter, than any book by almost anyone else writing today.”
In just over two decades, Boteach has written 28 other best-selling books, a sampling of which speaks to long-time study and thought on a great many modern social and religious constructs: Renewal: A Guide to the Values-Filled Life; The Broken American Male: And How to Fix Him; Hating Women: America’s Hostile Campaign Against the Fairer Sex; The Kosher Sutra: Eight Sacred Secrets for Reigniting Desire and Restoring Passion for Life; Face Your Fear: Living with Courage in an Age of Caution; Judaism for Everyone; and his review of Oxford history and life, Moses of Oxford, Vols. I & II.
His book Why Can’t I Fall in Love was a finalist for the 2002 Books for a Better Life Award, and writings focused on the American family, Parenting With Fire and Ten Conversations You Need to Have With Your Children, were both launched on Oprah's television show.
Boteach is one of the principal contributors to the home page of The Huffington Post, is a weekly columnist in The Jerusalem Post and The New Jersey Jewish Standard, and makes regular contributions to The Wall St Journal, the Washington Post, and many other leading publications.
He was host of The Rabbi Shmuley Show, a daily national radio program on Oprah & Friends, XM Satellite Radio, and was also host of the award-winning national reality TV show, TLC’s Shalom in the Home, for which he received the National Fatherhood Initiative’s most prestigious award, recognizing his efforts to promote the importance of a caring father in the contemporary family.
Rabbi Shmuley first came to world attention through his founding of the Oxford University L'Chaim Society, an organization of Oxford students that within three years of its founding in 1988 had become the second largest student organization in Oxford's history.