February 16, 2009
Rabbi Simcha Hochbaum was born & raised in Staten Island where he attended Rabbi Jay Marcus’ Young Israel of Staten Island. A graduate of Toras Emes Kaminetz, he went on to Israel to study at Beit Midrash L’Torah and Yeshivat Har Etzion. Simcha was greatly influenced by a number of Rabbis including Rabbi Reuven Kaminetsky and Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach.
Before his aliya, Simcha served as the Rabbi of the Eldridge Street Synagogue and taught at Mizrachi L’Banim as well as at the Bi-Cultural School in Stamford Connecticut.
As a response to the Oslo Accords, Simcha tooks his wife Leah and went on Aliya from the Lower East Side directly to Hebron in 1995. In Israel, in addition to his position as Hebron Director of Tourism, Simcha held a number of educational positions and now serves as a Rebbe in Yeshivat Reishit Yerushalayim teaching TaNach and Chassidut.
Leah Hochbaum, the famed hostess to thousands of youth in their Hebron home, was born and raised in Montreal. She studied at Michlala in Jerusalem and holds a degree in Occupational Therapy from NYU. Leah has worked for years with handicapped children at the Child Development Center.
The Hochbaums recently celebrated both a son’s Bar Mitzva and a son’s Brit in the Maarat HaMachpela. They have 5 children, including a daughter named after Shalhevet Pass.
Most of all, Simcha is famous for his deeply moving, spiritual tours of the two Holy cities – Jerusalem and Hebron.