Leaf Blue

Rabbi William Wolff

Rabbi William Wolff was born together with his twin brother in Berlin in 1927. 1933 he had to flee with his family from the Nazis. Together with his parents, one sister and his brother he lived in Amsterdam and after six years they went to London.

Already at the age of 5 he dreamed about becoming a Rabbi. This dream should come true only much later in his life. He studied National Economy and began a carrier as a Journalist in England. 1943 he completed his training as a stenographer for German, English, and French at the Reuters News Agency. After a few stops on the way he became Department Head at the Daily Mirror.

In his 50s he started to study at the Leo Baeck College in London in order to become a Rabbi where he received the Semicha in 1984. He functioned as a Rabbi at Wimbledon, Brighton, Milton Keynes and together with Rabbi Hugo Gryn at the West London Synagoge.

With 75 he followed the invitation of the Central Council of Jews in Germany and took over the office of the rabbi of the federal state of Mecklenburg-Vorpommern in 2002. He was responsible for the three congregations in Schwerin, Rostock, and Wismar. Most of the congregation-members came from the former Soviet Union. Therefore he decided to take lessons in Russian.

In 2005 Rabbi William Wolff was elected as the deputy Chairman of the General Rabbinical Conference in Germany. He received the Federal Cross of Merit and he was announced an honorary citizen of Schwerin in 2004.

Since 2015 Rabbi William Wolff is the Honorary President of the Yashar Foundation.


Yashar is a Hebrew word and means “upright, straightforward, open, direct, and honest” – This is what we promote.