Shalom and Welcome
to the Website for the
Western Jewish Studies Association

The Executive Board of the Western Jewish Studies Association is appalled and deeply saddened by the atrocities committed in Israel on Saturday, October 7, 2023, the last day of the Jewish holiday of Sukkot. While we may hold various political views on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, we are united in our view that the terrorist acts committed by Hamas were abhorrent crimes against human life that must be condemned, unequivocally, as such. The deliberate targeting of civilians is indefensible. We are also troubled by the loss of innocent lives in Gaza. As a diverse group of scholars, we seek to educate our students on the multiplicity of Jewish experiences across time and region and promote open intellectual exchange, debate, and disagreement. We reaffirm ourselves to this commitment and stand with Israelis and all people seeking peace in this region and beyond.

(Based on the Statement issued by the faculty of the Schusterman Center for Judaic and Israel Studies at the University of Oklahoma).  

The WJSA is a nonprofit organization founded in 1995 by the WJSA President, Dr. Lawrence Baron, and members of the association's Executive Board. Its main purpose is to organize and host a Jewish Studies Conference every Spring at alternating sites in the western United States and Canada to serve as a forum for Jewish Studies scholars in this region to present their research, discuss pedagogical issues, network with colleagues in their disciplines, and share information about the funding and organization of Jewish Studies programs. This website contains the following web pages:

WJSA President and Executive Board
Here you will find a listing of the members of the WJSA Executive Board along with its President, Dr. Lawrence Baron, providing emails and contact links to their affiliated universities, colleges, and studies programs.

WJSA Executive Administrator
I am Dr. Bonnie Harris, Exec. Admin. of the WJSA, as well as the webmaster for this website. At my own website,, you may follow my doctorate work on the rescue of Jewish refugees in the Philippines. 

WJSA Membership Information
This webpage contains current information for membership into the WJSA, providing the necessary forms and payment methods for submitting your membership dues. Information for individual subscriptions to the Shofar, an academic journal dealing with topics within the scope of Jewish Studies published by Purdue University Press can also be found here. Links for this and other Jewish Studies Associations are also provided.

WJSA Jewish Studies Conference Information
The WJSA organizes and implements a Jewish Studies Conference that usually meets in mid-to-late March every year. Calls for papers and panel presentations are available at this webpage as early as August or September every year.


Contact Information
Whether you are a member of the WJSA or not, if you have any questions, you may direct your inquiries to Dr. Baron, or myself, Dr. Harris. Our contact information is provided on this webpage.