Rabbi Jacob is one of the few Jews who was actually born and raised in Orlando, FL before Disney World came. He is a graduate of Washington University in St. Louis with a degree in philosophy and a Masters Degree in Hebrew and ordination from Hebrew Union College (HUC) in Cincinnati. He recently received his Doctor of Divinity from HUC.
He has served congregations in New Jersey, Alabama, Louisiana and Philadelphia. Presently he is the spiritual leader at Temple Am Echad in Lynbrook, NY on Long Island. In New York he founded the South Shore Kallah, an annual gathering of Saturday evening study for non-Orthodox adults.
While in the Deep South, Rabbi Jacob was known as a civil rights activist. In Alabama, he worked on Church & State along with Reproductive Rights legislation. He was a state board member of Planned Parenthood. In Louisiana, he was involved with issues of public education and Black/Jewish relations. He still takes his 10th graders to Washington DC once a year to lobby on the social issues of the day.
In Philadelphia Rabbi Jacob was the founding chair of the Interfaith Gathering of Lower Bucks (County). He instigated the opening of first branch of the Auerbach Central Agency of Jewish Education, located in Bucks County and he worked to open a supplementary (after school) high school program in Bucks County for Jewish teenagers with Gratz College. He also sat on the executive committee of “B’Yachad”, a committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia dedicated to building bridges between synagogues and Jewish agencies in the area.
He is also an accomplished Jewish storyteller and a teacher at the national conferences on Jewish Education. He is presently writing a commentary on a tractate of the Talmud, Pirke Avot, (The Ethics of the Fathers).