Malkiel Kotler

Aryeh Malkiel Kotler (born April 1951) is a Haredi rabbi and rosh yeshiva (dean) of Beth Medrash Govoha in Lakewood, New Jersey, one of the largest yeshivas in the world.[1] He is a member of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah (Council of Torah Sages) of Agudath Israel of America.


Malkiel Kotler
Aryeh Malkiel Kotler

April 1951 (age 71)
Parent(s)Shneur Kotler
Rischel Friedman
Jewish leader
PredecessorShneur Kotler
PositionRosh yeshiva
YeshivaBeth Medrash Govoha
ResidenceLakewood, New Jersey


Aryeh Malkiel Kotler was born to Shneur Kotler and his wife, Rischel (née Friedman). He is the second of 9 children.[2] The elder Kotler was the rosh yeshiva (dean) of Beth Medrash Govoha in Lakewood, New Jersey and son of the yeshiva's founder, Aharon Kotler. On his father's side, Kotler is the great-grandson of Isser Zalman Meltzer.

Upon the death of his father in 1982, Kotler was named co-rosh yeshiva of Beth Medrash Govoha along with Dovid Schustal, Yeruchem Olshin, and Yisroel Neuman,[3] who are all married to grandchildren of Aharon Kotler. At that time, the yeshiva had an enrollment of approximately 800 students, which has since grown to approximately 6,300.[4]

Kotler is a member of the Moetzes Gedolei HaTorah (Council of Torah Sages) of Agudath Israel of America.[5][6]


Kotler's first wife Hinda was the daughter of Yechiel Michel Feinstein and Lifsha, the granddaughter of Yitzchok Zev Soloveitchik. When Kotler traveled from their home in Israel to the US to visit his ailing father, his wife refused to join him. While Kotler was in the US his father died, and Kotler succeeded him as rosh yeshiva of Beth Medrash Govoha. Hinda Kotler refused to join her husband in Lakewood or accept a get (Jewish divorce document) without a rabbinical court in Israel hearing the case; she refused to submit to an American rabbinical court.[7][8][9] Kotler was issued a rarely used exemption known as a heter meah rabbanim (permission of 100 rabbis). This allowed him to take a second wife upon the depositing of the divorce document for the first wife with the rabbinical court.[10] Several months later he married his second wife, Chana Leah Tikotzky.


  1. ^ "NJ Higher Education Statistics". 2011. Retrieved 2 April 2012.
  2. ^ "Rabbi Shneur Kotler, 64, Head Of Rabbinical School in Jersey". The New York Times. 27 June 1982. Retrieved 26 July 2012.
  3. ^ Bunim, Amos (1989). A Fire in His Soul: Irving M. Bunim, 1901-1980, the Man and His Impact on American Orthodox Jewry. Feldheim Publishers. p. 244. ISBN 0873064739.
  4. ^ Goldberg, Rabbi Hillel. "The Traffic is Edgy, Rav Olshin Is Not". Yated Ne'eman, 12 October 2011, pp. 70–71.
  5. ^ "Six Gedolim Added To Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah Of Agudas Yisroel". 14 September 2020. Retrieved 9 November 2020.
  6. ^ "Moetzes Gedolei Hatorah Call on Community to Achieve Improvements; New Chavrei HaMoetzes Welcomed". Hamodia. September 14, 2020. Retrieved 9 November 2020.
  7. ^ "נושאים לעיון ולדיון: פרשת בריסק והרב מלכיאל קוטלר".
  8. ^ "האם הרב שהגן על עגונות גם הטריד אותן". הארץ.
  9. ^ "פורום: בחדרי חרדים - הינדלה פיינשטיין וקוטלר – בחדרי חרדים".
  10. ^ Odenheimer, Micha (28 January 2005). "'Harvard' of the Haredim". Haaretz. Retrieved 26 July 2012.