Today is April 5, 2020 -
1300 North Sepulveda Boulevard|Los Angeles, CA 90049|Phone: 310.476.2861
With the arrival of Rabbi Leonard Beerman in 1949, Leo Baeck Temple flourished and membership grew large enough to purchase a home of our own. At the cost of $14,000 Leo Baeck Temple moved into the former Canadian Legion Hall at 484 South San Vicente Boulevard. The main hall became the sanctuary, the garage became the social hall, and apartments above became offices and classrooms. In 1952, Rabbi Leo Baeck joined us to dedicate the congregation bearing his name.
The congregation continued to grow, and in 1954 Cantor William Sharlin joined the clergy. As the membership continued to grow, it became necessary to rent larger facilities for the religious school; the Westside Jewish Center, followed by a motel at Wilshire and Beverly Glen (which ultimately became Temple Sinai). Services for the High Holydays were held at the Academy Award Theater – then on Melrose. Temple Isaiah was the location of our Confirmation services.
By 1957, the growth of Leo Baeck Temple prompted the decision not simply to relocate to another facility, but to build a congregational home of our own. Ten acres became available in the Sepulveda Pass. Many were concerned that this new location was in the middle of nowhere, but that changed with the construction of the 405 freeway.
Groundbreaking was held on December 17, 1961. With the extraordinary guidance, input, and financial support of the entire community, the dream was finally realized with a dedication on April 17, 1963.
In July 2003, Rabbi Kenneth Chasen became the third senior rabbi of Leo Baeck Temple.
Since its first High Holyday services in 1947 – to the present day – Leo Baeck Temple has always been an innovative and engaging community ready to embrace change. We are still writing our history . . .