Kalman Packouz was an Orthodox rabbi who pioneered various Jewish educational initiatives geared towards baalei teshuva (“returnee to Judaism”) outreach.
Packouz was raised in Portland, Oregon and attended Temple Beth Israel, a reform temple. In 1979, after receiving rabbinical ordination in Jerusalem, Packouz started the first Aish HaTorah branch in St. Louis. Packouz served for ten years as executive director of Aish HaTorah international operations, and was head of the Miami office of Aish HaTorah’s worldwide programs. He was a contributor to simpletoremember.com. He was also a special correspondent for The Sun Sentinel. He was married and the father of nine children, including former international arms dealer and inventor David Packouz.
Packouz spoke out on Jewish continuity through marriage, and in 1976 authored the book, “How to Stop an Intermarriage.” The book was recently expanded and retitled as: “How to Prevent an Intermarriage – A Guide For Parents to Prevent Broken Hearts.”
In 1992, Packouz launched the Shabbat Shalom Weekly, an electronic publication distributed each week via fax and email.
In 1997, Packouz created Window on the Wall, a 24-hour live webcam from the Western Wall in Jerusalem.