“Like father like son” goes the old adage and no where is it more appropriate than in this transfer of directorship from a father to his son -from one Chabad rabbi to another.
Rabbi Mendel and Brocha Teldon are the newly appointed directors of Chabad of Mid-Suffolk and will be moving to Commack in early September with their 11 month old son Levi. Rabbi Teldon will also assume the spiritual leadership of Congregation Lubavitch in Commack.
Teldon is no stranger to the Long Island area. The son of Rabbi Tuvia and Chaya Teldon, directors of Chabad of Long Island, he grew up in Commack and witnessed first hand the incredible growth of Chabad in Eastern New York. Today there are over 29 Chabad rabbis in 23 Chabad centers throughout Long Island.
“My father recently established the Jewish Academy of Suffolk, a community day school,” says Teldon “and together with his other responsibilities in directing Chabad in Long Island, it leaves him with little time to devote to the ongoing outreach work in the Commack area. I feel privileged that he turned that position over to me and I pledge to do everything in my power to help the Jewish community of Mid-Suffolk.”
The Teldons have ambitious plans in the works. Their goal is to strengthen, expand and upgrade the existing programs in Mid-Suffolk including the Chabad Hebrew School, adult education classes, holiday programming, counseling services and the winter day camp. He also plans to offer “lunch and learn” programs in Hauppauge, which boasts the second largest industrial office park in the United States. Brocha Teldon will assume the directorship of the Chabad Hebrew School and will also organize new and exciting programming for teenagers and a Bat Mitzvah Club for pre teen girls.
The young couple already have years of experience in Jewish outreach activities. Rabbi Teldon worked with the Jewish communities in Anchorage and Fairbanks, Alaska, where he organized Shabbatons, weekend retreats and other programs. He has extensive experience in working with children as head counselor in Detroit’s prestigious Camp Gan Israel and as director of a winter camp in Tucson, Arizona. Brocha worked with children and teenagers in Perth, Australia Greenwich, CT and Raleigh, NC and has taught for more than three years in day schools in the New York area.
“We looked at many cities around the world where we thought we might live and work” said Teldon; “but we began to realize that our place is here, in the community in which I grew up. We decided to come back home and use our past knowledge and experience to reinvest and give back to our community.” His wife is impressed and gratified with the warmth and friendliness of the people she has already met and says “Everyone has been so welcoming, it has really added to my excitement and anticipation in moving here.”
“I am the second generation of Chabad in Commack” says Teldon proudly. “G-d willing our son Levi will be the third generation that will continue to help implement the vision of the Lubavitcher Rebbe of saintly memory; a vision of reaching out to every Jew wherever he or she may be in every corner of the globe with the joy and vitality of our Jewish heritage.”