The allegations of sexual harassment at the Abraham Geiger College in Potsdam lead to further consequences at the rabbinical seminary and the withdrawal of the founder of the college, Walter Homolka.
The Leo Baeck Foundation has been the sole sponsor of the Jewish training center since Friday, according to the Geiger College and the University of Potsdam. The foundation, which previously only held part of the business shares, has now taken over all shares in the non-profit organization from Homolka free of charge. This is an important step in the reorganization of the college, explained the Chancellor of the Abraham Geiger College, Anne-Margarete Brenker . Former Berlin Finance Secretary Gabriele Thöne was appointed interim director on Thursday. The previous managing director, Daniel Krochmalnik, resigned last Sunday. At the center of the allegations is a long-time employee of the Jewish training center at the University of Potsdam, who is also the husband of Rector and Rabbi Walter Homolka. Homolka is considered a leading figure in liberal Judaism in Germany.
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He is currently resting his duties, including as Vice Director of the School of Jewish Theology, an institute of the University of Potsdam. Until about two weeks ago, he was also chairman of the Leo Baeck Foundation. Since then, Chancellor Anne-Margarete Brenker has been the acting chairman.
The Central Council of Jews in Germany commissioned the Cologne law firm Gercke Wollschläger to investigate the incidents on Thursday. The law firm has already investigated cases of abuse in the Archdiocese of Cologne.