Shneur Kotler

Shneur Kotler

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Shneur Kotler

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Yosef Chaim Shneur Kotler (1918, Slutsk, Russia – 24 June 1982, Boston, Massachusetts) was an Orthodox rabbi and rosh yeshiva of Beth Medrash Govoha (also known as the Lakewood Yeshiva) in Lakewood, New Jersey from 1962 to 1982. During his tenure, he developed the Lithuanian-style, Haredi but non-Hasidic yeshiva into the largest post-graduate Torah institution in the world. He also established Lakewood-style kollels in 30 cities, and pioneered the establishment of community kollels in which Torah scholars study during the morning and afternoon hours and engage in community outreach during the evenings. Upon his death, he had served as the Lakewood rosh yeshiva for exactly the same amount of time as had his father, Rabbi Aharon Kotler, the founding rosh yeshiva of Beth Medrash Govoha: nineteen years, seven months, and one day.

Early life

He was born in Slutsk, Russia, to Rabbi Aharon Kotler and his wife, Rivka Chana Perel, the daughter of Rabbi Isser Zalman Meltzer, Rav of that town. Of his parents' children, only he and his sister, Sarah, survived infancy.

Shneur was educated in his youth by his father. He...
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