Emory Law says it is reviewing Broyde allegations
3:27 pm, April 16th, 2013
Emory University’s law school says it is looking into allegations that law professor and Rabbi Michael Broyde used a fake identity to comment on online publications and blogs, promote his own work and join a rival rabbinical group’s listserv.
The English-language version of Haaretz, an Israeli newspaper has more on the allegations here. According to Haaretz.com, he made up the name “Rabbi Hershel Goldwasser” to “laud work he had written under his own name.”
Emory’s prepared statement read: “The allegations regarding the conduct of Professor Michael Broyde are concerning to the Law School. We are currently reviewing the matter and plan to issue a statement once our inquiry is complete.”
Broyde responded to the Daily Report today via email, “I am sorry, but I am in the no comment mode now. Maybe in a week something different.”
According to Emory’s website, Broyde teaches classes in legal methods, family law and Jewish law. He earned his law degree from New York University and was ordained by Yeshiva University.
He is a past director of the Beth Din of American, the country’s largest Jewish law court. An article published Sunday in Haaretz cites a statement from the rabbinical court’s current director, Rabbi Shlomo Weissman, which said Broyde requested a leave of absence from his role as a judge, or dayan.
Broyde is a member of the New York bar, not the State Bar of Georgia. The executive counsel of the Georgia Bar, Paula Frederick, said it’s not clear whether lawyers setting up fake online identities to promote themselves would constitute a breach of professional rules.
“The question is—is it professional conduct? A lie or exaggeration in your personal life is your business,” Frederick said. “It’s an interesting question. We’d have to look at it on a case-by-case basis.
“If somebody were to file a grievance, we would at least ask the disciplinary board to tell us if it thinks it’s a violation or not,” she added.