Rabbi Ricky Vigon
Director of Development & J-Inspire
Rabbi Ricki Vigon is a jack of many trades – and a master of most of them! He’s as comfortable performing magic tricks on stage in front of hundreds of people as he is wearing his apron while cooking something up in the kitchen! Born and raised across the pond in Essex, England, Ricki belonged to a synagogue but was basically uninvolved with Judaism. After High School he went on his first Aish trip, ironically enough, visiting Aish NY’s Center in New York City. From there, Ricki became very active in Aish UK, first as a participant and then as a student leader, planning and leading programs. During college, Ricki attended Manchester Metropolitan, studying Criminology, while remaining highly active in Aish. He also worked as a professional magician in two of London’s largest retailers – Harrods, the world famous department store, and Hamleys, the oldest toy store in the world. After graduating from college, he worked as a clothing buyer. Even though he was content, he always harbored a desire to learn more about Judaism.
In 2006, Ricki decided it was a now-or-never moment to delve into Judaism so that summer he went to study in Aish HaTorah in Jerusalem for a month. That one month turned into 7 years! There, he met his wife, Sarah, married and began a family. While in his two year rabbinical ordination, Ricki led multiple trips for college students in Israel, such as AEPi Roadtrips, Jinternship and PERI.
In October 2013, the Vigons moved to State College, PA to work with the incredibly special students of The Pennsylvania State University. There, Ricki meets with dozens of students each week, oversees the Aish Penn State board meetings, teaches in the very popular Maimonides program and hosts large Shabbos meals each week.