Religion in

The Department of Religious Studies' Aronov Endowment


In the mid-1980s efforts began to raise funds to establish within the Department of Religious Studies an endowed chair in the study of Judaism. Private funds were raised from within the state of Alabama, the University of Alabama provided matching funds from mineral royalties on University-owned lands, and the state of Alabama made available funds from the Alabama Trust Fund for Eminent Scholars.

Efforts to establish the endowment were authorized by the University of Alabama's Board of Trustees at its July 1986 meeting, and the endowed chair was formally established in 1990.

The endowment was named after the late Mr. Aaron Morris Aronov (b. 1919), a native of Montgomery, AL, founder of Aronov Realty, and the fundraising chairman for the Department's endowment. (A brief biography of Mr. Aronov can be found at the state of Alabama's Department of Archives and History.)

Apart from funding the position for a professor who teaches on the history and contemporary issues in the study of Judaism, the Aronov Endowment has assisted the Department in a variety of ways, from funding Post-Doctoral Fellowships and Visiting Assistant Professors to making possible additional purchases for the Department library. Its benefits have rippled all across campus, by funding visiting public speakers, enabling the Department to assist Gorgas Library to supplement its holdings, and funding student activities.


Although new donors periodically contribute to the Aronov Endowment, the following people (whose names appear on the plaque that hangs in our lounge) are the founding supporters of the Department's Endowed Chair in the Study of Judaism:

Harold Lee Abroms

Jerald Jacob Labovitz

Mr. and Mrs. Jay P. Altmayer

Harry Labovitz

Bernard N. Ames

Mr. and Mrs. James L. Loeb

Hazel Levin Aronov

Mr. and Mrs. William A. Lubel

Aaron Morris Aronov

Mr. and Mrs. Herman Martin Maisel

Jacqueline E. Aronov

The Ben May Foundation

Owen William Aronov

Burt Meisler

The Charles and Minnie Temerson Foundation

Perry Mendel

Mark Hirsch Berkin

Mayer Mitchell

Berkowitz, Lefkovits, Isom, and Kushner

Abraham A. Mitchell

Fred Berman

J. George Mitnick

Birmingham Jewish Federation

Richard Pizitz

Jeffrey Warren Blitz

Michael Pizitz

Estan J. Bloom

Merritt Pizitz

Paul M. Brown

Edward Brian Raymond

Ralph Eli Capouya

Fred A. Richard, Jr.

Dr. and Mrs. Morris N. Capouya

Harold Ripps

Mr. and Mrs. Albert Capp

Gordon Rosen

Raymond E. Cohen

Alan Rothfeder

Charles A. Collat

Morris S. Rousso

Joe Engel

Arnold Royal

Marvin Stanley Epstein

Mr. and Mrs. Jamie Lee Sabel

Morris Feinberg

Mark Sabel

Edward Morris Franco

Morris K. Sirote

Ralph Abraham Franco

E.M. Friend, Jr.

Frances Abramson Frank

Karl B. Friedman

Yale Friedlander

James L. Permutt

Mr. and Mrs. Lowell J. Friedman

Richard I. Lehr

Percy G. Gellert

Kim E. Rosenfield

Roy S. Goldfinger

Jack B. Levy

Richard J. Grassgreen

Richard Cohn

Emil C. Hess

Joseph S. Bluestein

Donald E. Hess

Jack E. Held

Marty Karzmar

Edward M. Friend, III.

Samuel Kaufman

Steven A. Brickman

Rita Capouya Kimerling

Judy F. Todd

Mr. and Mrs. Charles Kimerling

Harold I. Apolinsky

Jeff Kohn

Sisterhood of Temple Emmanuel

Mr. and Mrs. Maurice E. Kreisman

Ronald P. Slepian

Neal D. Labovitz

Bill Woldenberg

Dr. and Mrs. Jack Wool

Scholars who have held positions in the Department of Religious Studies funded through its Aronov Endowment.

Prof. Richard A. Cohen
Assistant Professor
Now at the University of North Carolina, Charlotte

Prof. Gilya Schmidt
Post-Doctoral Fellow
Now at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Prof. Barbara Galli
Associate Professor
Now at McGill University, Montreal

Prof. Ilona Rashkow
Visiting Professor
Now at State University of New York, Stonybrook

Prof. Steven L. Jacobs
Associate Professor

Prof. Gabriele Fassbeck
Visiting Assistant Professor