William I. Kuhn became Senior Rabbi of Congregation Rodeph Shalom in 1998. Rabbi Kuhn was ordained in 1994 by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and became the senior rabbi of Congregation Rodeph Shalom in 1998 after having served as assistant and associate rabbi since 1994. He brings broad and distinctive life experience to the congregation’s historic pulpit. Throughout his tenure, Rabbi Kuhn has initiated and overseen Rodeph Shalom’s ambitious and wide-ranging efforts to create a Jewish community of profound connections through transformative study, prayer, and urban engagement.
Nationally, Rabbi Kuhn serves at the Vice President of Financial Affairs for the Central Conference of American Rabbis, and he is active in the Union for Reform Judaism. In Philadelphia, Rabbi Kuhn is an active member of the boards of Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, Jewish Family and Children’s Services and the National Conference for Community and Justice. He has served on Mayor Street’s Transition Committee as co-chairman of the Volunteer and Faith-Based Organizations Sub-committee and has served as a Commissioner on the Human Relations Commission for the City of Philadelphia.
A native and longtime resident of Nashville, Tennessee, Rabbi Kuhn’s great love for Judaism was nurtured at Congregation Ohabai Sholom and within his family, which had founded the synagogue in the 1860’s. He continued the Kuhn family tradition of leadership as a board member and officer of that congregation, particularly while chair of the Social Action Committee, when he was instrumental in establishing a homeless shelter based in the Temple.
Rabbi Kuhn is a graduate of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. After leaving Penn, he served as vice-president of Kuhn’s Big K Stores Corporation, a family-owned retail business, and later established and was president of General Property Investor’s Corporation, a real-estate investment firm. Throughout this period, he was active in Nashville’s Jewish and general community.
Rabbi Kuhn and his wife, Emily, live in the Society Hill section of Philadelphia. Their two children Michael and Sarah Kuhn live in New York. They are blessed with three grandchildren.