Rabbi Randy Fleisher was born in the Chicago area and attended the University of Wisconsin for his undergraduate studies. In the years before he entered rabbinical school, Rabbi Fleisher worked for a citizen’s action group in Washington, D.C., taught environmental education to inner-city children in Connecticut, and was the Associate Director of Camp Thunderbird in the north woods of Minnesota. At Hebrew Union College in New York City, Rabbi Fleisher directed the seminary’s meal program for the homeless and for two years served as the student rabbi in Hickory, North Carolina.
Ordained in 2000, Rabbi Fleisher came to St. Louis to be the Assistant Rabbi at Central Reform Congregation where he takes on a variety of roles in that diverse, social justice minded, and spiritually vibrant urban congregation. Named Associate Rabbi in 2004, Rabbi Fleisher works alongside one of his rabbinic mentors, CRC’s founding rabbi, Susan Talve, and he is known to accompany his services with a guitar slung over his shoulders. “Rabbi Randy” as he is commonly known, is proud to officiate at same-gender and interfaith weddings and he also often co-officiates ceremonies with clergy of traditions other than Judaism.
He is also quite involved in the greater community, most notably with the Central West End Holy Ground Collaborative, a neighborhood-based interfaith and multi-racial grassroots organization working for urban justice and renewal. Rabbi Randy is the past chair of the Jewish Environmental Initiative and serves as the current Vice-President of Cultural Leadership, an organization bringing together teenagers of different racial and cultural backgrounds. He also serves on the Boards of Directors of Habitat for Humanity, M-SLICE (Metro St. Louis Coalition for Inclusion and Equity), and the Jewish Fund for Human Needs. He has served previous terms on boards for the Urban League, Lift for Life Charter School, and Doorways (housing for AIDS patients). With Rabbi James Stone Goodman, Rabbi Fleisher organizes the annual Heschel/King event. In 2005, Rabbi Fleisher was recognized by the Coro Leadership Center with an ‘Emerging Leader’ award, and in 2012 by St. Louis University for “Upholding the Life and Legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr.”
Rabbi Fleisher, his wife Amy, and their two children (Zoey Sky and Gabriel Shine) live in University City.
CRC Music to Download
If you’ve ever been to an evening service led by Rabbi Randy, you’ve probably heard the special CRC version of the Hashkivenu. Now you can download an mp3 recording of this song! Recording features a wonderful group of CRC musicians: Rabbi Randy Fleisher, Leslie Caplan, Marty Miller, Andrew John, and Steve Friedman.