Rabbi Rick Shapiro is a native of Orange County, California, where he grew up with his three siblings. Upon completion of his military service in 1974, Rabbi Shapiro completed his B.A. in Jewish Studies at UCLA and began his studies at Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion, where he received his M.A. in Hebrew Letters in 1979, rabbinic ordination in 1981and his Doctor Of Divinity (Honorus Causa) in 2006.
Rabbi Shapiro currently is an Intentional Interim Rabbi, assisting congregations in transition as they prepare to select a new rabbi. From 1981 to 2006, Rabbi Shapiro served as the settled Rabbi for congregations in Denver, Colorado, and in Stockton, Santa Barbara, and Palm Desert, California. Beginning in 2007, he has served as an Interim Rabbi, working with congregations all across the United States.
Rabbi Shapiro is a nationally recognized expert in the area of synagogue transition. He has extensive training and experience as a Synagogue Transition Specialist / Intentional Interim Rabbi. As one of the first rabbis trained in this field, he speaks and writes extensively on the national level. He has been a presenter on synagogue transition issues at the URJ National Biennial as well as to his colleagues at the CCAR National Convention.
Rabbi Shapiro has been an active participant, on both the local and national levels, in the pursuit of religious and social justice, including advocating for reproductive rights, fair and just treatment for agricultural and casino workers, the elimination of racial and religious discrimination, and the promotion of equity in all areas of life for the LGBTQ community. He has spoken extensively at both the local and national levels on these issues, and he is the co-author of Judaism and Abortion, a publication detailing the 3,000 year old Jewish position on abortion. He has also been deeply involved in interfaith issues, serving on the Executive Board of the Denver Area Interfaith Clergy Conference, the Board of Stockton Metro Ministries and as President for two years of the Greater Santa Barbara Clergy Association.
Rabbi Shapiro is married and he and his wife, Lynn, are the parents of two grown sons: Ari, an attorney who lives in Atlanta with his wife Melissa, and Aaron, a congressional liaison officer with the Department of Energy who, with his wife Erin, lives in Washington DC. Rick and Lynn are the proud grandparents of Bennett and