1. Matti Friedman
The author of The Aleppo Codex and an article exposing bias against Israel in the press corps gave two fascinating talks on these subjects in Seattle in June.
2. Rabbi Simon Benzaquen
The rabbi emeritus of Sephardic Bikur Holim, who has discovered a retirement career in producing Sephardic-inspired rap music, got a shout-out in the Forward in June.
3. Ruth Behar
The Havana-born anthropology professor, creative writer, and MacArthur “genius grant” winner gave two talks on “Dreams of Sepharad” at the University of Washington’s 40th annual Samuel and Althea Stroum lecture series in May.
4. Ahmed Zayat
After many defeats and a controversial past, the eccentric Egyptian Jewish horse owner’s colt American Pharoah won the American Triple Crown in June.