In Memoriam: Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks (March 8, 1948 - November 7, 2020)

November 8, 2020

The James Madison Program mourns Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, whose death robs our Program of a highly esteemed friend and the world of one of its greatest spiritual and intellectual leaders. Rabbi Sacks was 72 years old. He is survived by his wife Elaine and their children and grandchildren. Our program sends them, as well as Rabbi Sacks’ faithful staff members Joanna Benarroch and Dan Sacker, our deepest condolences.

Rabbi Sacks visited Princeton and the Madison Program twice in recent years—giving illuminating and inspiring talks and engaging in memorable discussions with our Visiting and Post-doctoral Fellows, our Undergraduate Fellows, our Faculty Associates and friends, members of our staff, and friends in the Princeton community. On both occasions we had the pleasure of partnering with Princeton’s Center for Jewish Life and Chabad of Princeton University. Although Rabbi Sacks’ death is a devastating blow to all of us, we know how particularly deeply it is felt by the Jewish community, including our University and local community, and so we extend our deep condolences to Rabbi Julie Roth, Rabbi Eitan Webb, and the entire Jewish community of Princeton and beyond.

Robert P. George, McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence and Director of the James Madison Program has issued this statement:

“To Elaine and the Sacks children and grandchildren, and to Joanna and Dan, we send our condolences, love, and prayers. Please know that we stand in solidarity with you, both in the grief you bear and in the hope that Jonathan inspired in us and taught us by example as well as precept never to abandon. We will forever honor him in our hearts as a servant of God and a true teacher of all of humanity.”