New York Post RENT-A-RABBI
EXECS PAY BIG FOR ON-THE-JOB RELIGION
By CATIE LAZARUS
December 16, 2007 -- Inside a windowed conference room at Morgan Stanley, Scott Beck is discussing the Holocaust with his rabbi, Henry Harris.
Harris had recently returned from a trip to Poland. "It looks just like it did in 'The Pianist' and 'Schindler's List.' Did you see 'Schindler's List,' and do you remember the part when they are in Krakow?" he asked.
Beck, an executive director at the bank, nods as he sneaks a peek at his BlackBerry. "I got my eye on the market, too," he says.
Atoning for his sins? Well, sort of.
Beck and many other corporate titans have a regular "take your rabbi to work day," when trading and the Torah go hand in hand.
For guilty Jews who can pay as much as $250,000 a year, a rabbi from Aish New York, a nonprofit educational center, will get religious with you anytime, anywhere. Everyone from Kirk Douglas to executives at Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan and major hedge funds are clients, the company says.
There is no set curriculum, and the only expectation is that the students contribute a minimum annual donation of $10,000. Clients use their half-hour to hour sessions to talk about Torah verses, relationships - even how to make Jewish bread.
"If they can't meet at their office, maybe a conference room is taken, we'll just meet at Starbucks," Aish's Rabbi Stephen Schiff says.
"Successful executives don't have the time to devote," says Schiff, sitting in Aish's four-floor Upper West Side headquarters, a collection of plush event rooms, a library and a boardroom. "We'll make cold calls, referrals, whatever it takes to inspire a Jewish New York."
The center has four rabbis on call five days a week for individual sessions in what Aish calls their Executive Learning Program. Jews of more modest means can attend group activities after work, such as speed dating and Shabbat dinners for singles."
$10,000 a year to EHNTJC and I'll meet you anytimne, anywhere to bring you Judaism