Rabbi Donald Tam

In 1987, Rabbi Donald Tam, along with a core group of congregants, founded Temple Beth Tikvah. His service as a rabbi and to the community has been manifested in his particularly caring and loving pastoral work. Over the years, Rabbi Tam has shared the joys and sorrows of his congregants with compassion.

After graduating with a degree in history from the University of Florida in 1966, Rabbi Tam attended Hebrew Union College (HUC) and was ordained in 1973. He received the Honorary Degree of Doctor of Divinity from HUC in 1998.

Prior to founding Temple Beth Tikvah, Rabbi Tam had served on the pulpits of congregations in Glencoe, Il., Dothan, Al., Atlanta, and Ottawa.

Rabbi Tam’s community involvement has made him a very recognizable and sought after leader in the Jewish community locally and nationally. He has played a significant role in a variety of community and spiritual initiatives, including:

  • Board of the American Jewish Committee
  • Teacher in the Melton Program at the Marcus Jewish Community Center
  • Jewish Practices Committee, New Jewish High School
  • Friends of Yad Vashem Committee
  • Speaker on Judaism, sponsored by the Jewish Chautauqua Society
  • Board of North Fulton Community Charities
  • Board of Jewish Education Services
  • Rabbi Advisory Committee of Davis Academy
  • Teacher and on Board of Tichon
  • Member of Bio-Ethics Committee of the Weinstein Hospice/Bremen Jewish Home
  • Secretary/Treasurer of Atlanta Rabbinical Association
  • Board of Yeshiva High School of Atlanta
  • Member of the Counseling Committee, Jewish Family Services of Atlanta
  • Atlanta Rabbinical Association

Congregants Arthur Blank, co-founder of The Home Depot, and his wife, Stephanie Blank, paid tribute to Rabbi Tam by naming in his honor the Institute for Jewish Studies at Emory University, which they established through a generous grant. Today Rabbi Tam serves as Rabbi Emeritus of Temple Beth Tikvah and spends a good part of his time teaching and attending classes in Jewish Studies at Emory.