Rahm Emanuel

official U.S. Congress photo of Rahm Emanuel c. 2000s

Birth Name: Rahm Israel Emanuel

Place of Birth: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

Date of Birth: November 29, 1959

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Rahm Emanuel is an American politician. A member of the Democratic Party, he served as Mayor of Chicago, Illinois, from May 16, 2011 to May 20, 2019. He has also been Senior Advisor to the President, from January 20, 1993 to November 7, 1998, a Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Illinois, from January 3, 2003 to January 2, 2009, Chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, from January 3, 2007 to January 3, 2009, and White House Chief of Staff, from January 20, 2009 to October 1, 2010.

Rahm is the son of Marsha (Smulevitz) and Benjamin M. Emanuel, a pediatrician. His parents were/are both Jewish. His father was from Israel. His mother was born in Illinois, U.S., to parents from Russia. He is the brother of Ezekiel Emanuel, an oncologist and bioethicist, and Ari Emanuel, the co-CEO of talent agency William Morris Endeavor.

Rahm is married to Amy Merritt Rule, with whom he has three children. Amy is a convert to Judaism.

His first name, Rahm, means “high” or “lofty” in Hebrew. His surname, Emanuel was taken by the family after his father’s brother, Emanuel Auerbach, who was killed in 1933 in Jerusalem. It means “God with us” in Hebrew.

Rahm’s paternal grandfather was named Ezekiel Emanuel (who was born with the surname Auerbach).

Rahm’s paternal grandmother was named Pnyna.

Rahm’s maternal grandfather was Chaim/Herman Smulevitz (the son of Morris Smulevitz and Goldie/Goldy Shrotzky). Chaim was born in Russia. Morris was the son of Nosson Smolovitz and Puah.

Rahm’s maternal grandmother was Sophie Lampert (the daughter of Yankel Lampert and Haya/Chia). Sophie was born in Russia or Romania. Yankel was the son of Isadore Lampert and Hannah, who were from Bessarabia, now mostly in Moldova.

Sources: Genealogy of Rahm Emanuel – http://www.geni.com

Rahm’s maternal grandparents, Chaim/Herman Smulevitz and Sophie Lampert, on the 1930 U.S. Census – https://www.familysearch.org

5 Responses

  1. Ardor says:

    Big bulging eyes.

    Definitely not a Jewish trait.

    Try North African, Mediterranean or Gulf Arab.

  2. cwm85 says:

    I knew he was Jewish and he looks like he could be from Israel.

  3. sarahle says:

    he is the first and only guy I know with this name being used for non-religious circumstances. it’s a rare hebrew name… xD

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