Past Writers

Cross-Currents has featured the work of several distinguished contributors who have moved on to other projects.

Jeff Ballabon

Jeff Ballabon is the founder of Ballabon Group LLC, a strategic public affairs and communications firm. He has run lobbying, grassroots, and issue campaigns in Washington, DC, and across the nation. He is also the founder of the non-partisan Center for Jewish Values and hosts a weekly conference call for conservative Jewish activists across the US and in Israel.

Jeff is a graduate of Ner Israel Rabbinical College, Yeshiva University, and Yale Law School. He practiced law in New York before going to Washington, DC, where he served as Legislative Counsel to Senator John Danforth (R-MO) and Republican Counsel to the Consumer Affairs and Product Safety Subcommittee of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

His writing today is more political in nature, and can be found on Political Mavens. He was also a founding writer of the “Judge and Jewry” blog.

Mark Bane

Mark Bane is a partner at the Ropes & Gray law firm, practicing in New York City. He is also the Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Orthodox Union, where he previously served as the Chairman of the Institute for Public Affairs.

Dovid Gottlieb

During his time as a writer for Cross-Currents, Rabbi Dovid Gottlieb was the rabbi of Congregation Shomrei Emunah in Baltimore, MD.

In addition to his weekly Torah classes, R. Gottlieb delivered guest lectures at many of Baltimore’s synagogues and educational institutions and was a regular contributor of essays on the weekly Torah portion to the Baltimore Jewish Times. Many of R. Gottlieb’s classes can be heard online at and He is involved in a number of communal organizations and is a member of the Executive Board of the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA) as well as its recently reconstituted Vaad Halacha.

Rabbi Gottlieb received his ordination from the Yeshiva University’s Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary (RIETS), where he was also a member of their prestigious Wexner Kollel Elyon. While a student, he published numerous scholarly articles on Torah topics and also co-edited two Torah publications. In the winter of 2003, he authored Ateres Yaakov, a book of essays about a wide range of halakhic topics which has been well received by both scholars and laymen alike.

Gedalia Litke

Gedalia Litke is an attorney in private practice with a large New York City firm. He specializes in real estate finance and development and has lectured and published extensively in his field.

Mr. Litke is involved in a wide array of Jewish community activities. He is a founder of Kayama, which facilitates gittin, Jewish divorces, for unaffiliated Jews who are divorcing civilly. His activities have led to his being honored by or asked to serve on the boards of numerous organizations, including, at the national level, Agudath Israel, the Orthodox Union and Young Israel. He is also a Trustee of the Maks and Lea Rothstein Charitable Youth Trust and of the Yeshiva of Spring Valley. He has lectured nationally for Aish HaTorah and is now an adjunct lecturer at Ohr Somayach of Monsey. He is also heavily involved in various political issues and fundraising campaigns of interest to the Jewish community.

Mr. Litke attended Columbia Law School and Ner Israel Rabbinical College. He also has a Masters from Johns Hopkins University.

Yaakov Yosef Reinman

Rabbi Yaakov Reinman is a writer, historian and scholar of international renown. The editor and publisher of numerous historical and philosophical works, he is also the author of a study of Talmudic contractual law used in yeshivos throughout the world. He is best known for his book, One People, Two Worlds, which he co-authored with Reform Rabbi Amiel Hirsch. While the publicity for the book misconstrued it as authenticating the two Rabbis as partners in building a Jewish future, the text between the covers remains an outstanding response to efforts to change Judaism to be consonant with the vagaries of our age. Rabbi Reinman lives in Lakewood, NJ, where he continues his daily studies in the famous Beth Medrash Govoha.

Nosson Scherman

Rabbi Nosson Scherman is the general editor of ArtScroll/Mesorah Publications, and few people — if any — can claim a greater influence upon the production of traditional Jewish learning materials in readable, contemporary, well-written English. His single contribution to Cross-Currents appeared on December 3, 2004.

Marvin Schick

Marvin Schick is President of the Rabbi Jacob Joseph School, a voluntary position he has held for over three decades. He is senior advisor to the Avi Chai Foundation and publisher of the Journal of Halacha and Contemporary Society. He was the founder and first president of the National Jewish Commission on Law and Public Affairs – COLPA, which was established in 1965 to combat employment and other forms of discrimination against religious minorities.

His writings have appeared in numerous publications, and he has served as a columnist for the Jewish Press, the Long Island Jewish World and the New York Jewish Week. He is the author of Learned Hand’s Court and of two comprehensive censuses of Jewish day schools and yeshivas.

He has a PhD in political science from New York University, and is a retired professor who served on the faculty of a number of universities, including Hunter College and The New School.