Stanley ‘Ned’ Rosenbaum, professor and intermarriage consultant, dies at 71 in car crash


Stanley Rosenbaum, an adjunct professor in the Jewish Studies program at the University of Kentucky, and interfaith marriage consultant and co-officiant, died Nov. 29 at 71 in a car accident.

"In spite of the tragic circumstances, it’s hard not to smile when you think of Ned," said Jeremy Popkin, the Jewish Studies program director at the University of Kentucky.


”He brought to life all the things he knew about the Jewish tradition with his great sense of humor," Popkin said.

Rosenbaum, who also taught Hebrew, was highly rated by students on the website Rate My Professors. Prior to his position at Kentucky, he was a professor emeritus of Jewish studies at Dickinson College in Pennsylvania. He had published several books.

Rosenbaum, also known as Ned, and his wife, Mary, a practicing Catholic, wrote, consulted, counseled and officiated at interfaith weddings based on “traditional values from an egalitarian, interfaith, inclusive perspective communicated in a lively, humorous style grounded in experience and scholarship.” Their website said he was working on a book titled “Strange Wives,” about intermarriage in the biblical period, and offered this explanation for their work:

“Mary and Ned Rosenbaum are a practicing Catholic and an observant Jew who have been married to each other for more than 40 years. While maintaining fidelity to both our traditions, we have steeped ourselves in the essence of each other’s faiths. We draw from many years’ study of religion and add our unique — sometimes offbeat  — perspective. Our explorations and celebrations have helped us discover the larger truths that lie behind denominational differences — and to form an enduring bond with each other.”

Rosenbaum’s car slid down an embankment and into high water after he crashed into another vehicle that had stalled.

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