"“When someone looks different, that is not the time to ask a bunch of personal questions. It’s a time to say, ‘Welcome. Thank you so much for coming’”
Rabbi Sandra Lawson describes herself as a sociologist, personal trainer, food activist, weightlifter, vegan, writer, public speaker, and musician, in no particular order. Her story is absolutely remarkable: Her father was raised in a church in a small village in Arkansas, and her mother was not part of any religious community. After an not-so-easy childhood, she learned that her ancestors who immigrated to the United States were Jewish, but did not marry Jewish and the faith was not passed down. She then got into a relationship with a Jewish woman and got involved in the community. After meeting a Rabbi in a business situation, she attended a synagogue for the first time and decided to convert and attend rabbinical school.
Sandra currently serves as the Associate Chaplain for Jewish Life at Elon University. She became one of the first openly gay, female, black rabbis in the world in 2018. Rabbi Lawson has a particular focus on teaching Judaism anywhere and everywhere, and has a big following on TikTok!