Earl Raab, San Francisco JCRC director

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Earl RaabPhoto via Jewish Public Affairs Committee of California
Earl Raab
Photo via Jewish Public Affairs Committee of California

Earl Raab, a sociologist, Jewish community advocate and longtime director of the San Francisco Jewish Community Relations Council, died Oct. 24 in Forest Knolls, Calif. He was 96. He was also a commentator and author on American political culture and the Jewish experience in America.

He served as director of the San Francisco Jewish Community Relations Council from 1951 to 1987. Raab also was a co-founder of the Jewish Public Affairs Committee of California. An award in his name is given annually to a community activist “who best exemplifies Mr. Raab’s high standard of communal activism and advocacy for residents of our state.”


After he left the JCRC, Raab was the founding director of the Perlmutter Institute for Jewish Advocacy at Brandeis University.

He was raised in New York and Virginia during the Great Depression and attended the City College of New York in the late 1930s. He was an officer in the Army Air Corps during World War II. Following the war he tried dairy farming in Maine and soon after left for San Francisco.

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