Rabbi Samuel Stahl assumed his duties as Senior Rabbi of Temple Beth-El, in San Antonio, Texas, in July, 1976. He retired from that position on May 31, 2002, and is now Rabbi Emeritus of the Temple. From 1967 to 1969, he was a U.S. Army Chaplain in Ft. Belvoir, Virginia, and Seoul, Korea. He served as Rabbi of Temple B'nai Israel (The Henry Cohen Memorial) in Galveston, Texas, from 1969 to 1976.
A native of Sharon, Pennsylvania, he received his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1961. In 1975, he was awarded the earned degree of Doctor of Hebrew Letters and, in 1992, the honorary degree of Doctor of Divinity at Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR), Cincinnati. He was graduated with honors and was ordained a Rabbi in 1967 from HUC-JIR.While in Galveston, Rabbi Stahl was active in many local civic and religious associations. He was the first Rabbi ever to be elected President of the Galveston Ministerial Association.
He is a member of the Board of Directors of the San Antonio Chapter of the National Conference of Community and Justice, the Peace Center, and the Santa Rosa Children's Hospital Foundation. He founded the San Antonio Chapter of the Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. He was a member of the Martin Luther King Memorial City-County Commission and headed its Scholarship Committee.
Rabbi Stahl is the Past President of the Southwestern Association of Reform Rabbis, as well as the Kallah of Texas Rabbis. he was the first Rabbi to serve as Co-chairman of the Jewish-Christian forum of the Texas Conference of Churches and to receive the Distinguished Religious Leadership Award from the San Antonio Community of Churches. He also received accolades from Texas Lutheran University and the Texas Conference of Churches for strengthening interfaith relations and from Israel Bonds for supporting Israel's economic development.
Stahl was the Editor of the Journal of Reform Judaism, the official quarterly publication of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR) for six years. He was also the Chairman of the Joint Commission on Continuing Rabbinic Education of the CCAR and HUC-JIR. He also served on the National Board of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations and the Executive Board of the Central Conference of American Rabbis.
Rabbi Stahl is the author of "Making the Timeless Timely: Thoughts and Reflections of a Contemporary Reform Rabbi," and has written numerous articles for national Jewish publications. He and his wife, Lynn are the parents of two daughters, Heather Sara Katz and Alisa Michelle Stahl.