Orthodox Union Appoints First General Counsel

24 Sep 2019

NEW YORK – The Orthodox Union (OU), the nation’s oldest and largest umbrella organization for the North American Orthodox Jewish community, has named highly-regarded New York attorney Rachel Sims as its first General Counsel. She will manage the OU’s legal and compliance work and provide guidance to all departments within the organization. 

Sims has nearly two decades of legal experience, at some of the top law firms in New York, counselling professional associations, corporations, partnerships and senior executives. She joined the OU after spending five years as a senior litigator at Blank Rome LLP.  Prior to that position, she was a litigation associate at Greenberg Traurig, LLP and Fried Frank.

“We are extremely fortunate to have someone of Rachel’s caliber, background and experience join our senior management team. The OU has experienced enormous growth over the last few years; with that growth comes the additional need for us to have a seasoned general counsel who can assist each of our departments and programs,” said OU Executive Vice President Allen Fagin.

“Having grown up in the Brooklyn Orthodox Jewish community, and the oldest grandchild of Holocaust survivors, the role of General Counsel for one of the largest Jewish organizations in the world is an opportunity of a lifetime. I am excited to use my legal skills, knowledge and experience to help the OU continue to grow and succeed in its mission to inspire the greater Jewish community and to protect its interests and values,” said Sims.

Sims graduated from Brooklyn Law School magna cum laude, where she was a member of the Brooklyn Law Review. She received a master’s degree in forensic psychology from John Jay School of Criminal Justice and her bachelor’s degree from the City University of New York.

While in private practice, Sims was active with several volunteer organizations including Her Justice, the City Bar Justice Center, Elderlaw Project, and the New York Legal Assistance Group, Divorce Mediation Project.

She resides in Brooklyn, New York with her family.

Founded in 1898, the Orthodox Union, (OU), serves as the voice of American Orthodox Jewry, with over 400 congregations in its synagogue network. As the umbrella organization for American Orthodox Jewry, the OU is at the forefront of advocacy work on both state and federal levels, outreach to Jewish teens and young professionals through NCSY, Israel Free Spirit Birthright, Yachad and OU Press, among many other divisions and programs. For more information, visit https://www.ou.org/.