Operation Benjamin is comprised of a small group of volunteers, and one paid professional genealogist, quietly dedicated to correcting mistakes that have been made in marking the graves of America’s fallen Jewish heroes. We are pleased to involve professionals from a variety of fields, all of whose expertise are crucial to the success of our mission.
Founder & CEO
After a career in the private sector, Shalom Lamm has taken on the position of Chief Executive Officer to lead the growth and reach of Operation Benjamin. Mr. Lamm has served as a member of the Board of Directors at Yeshiva College, was President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Camp Morasha, and was a member of the Board of Directors of The Jewish Institute for National Security Affairs (JINSA). He was one of the founders of the Hatzoloh Medical Rescue squad on the West side of Manhattan. Today, he serves as one of the driving forces of Operation Benjamin.
Mr. Lamm is a graduate of Yeshiva University (BA, Philosophy) and the American Military University (MA with honors, US Military History). He has published articles and essays, and been an on-air historian, on a wide range of topics including educational public policy, the U.S. Civil War, and warfare policy in the Journal of International Security.
RABBI DR. JACOB J. SCHACTER
Co-founder & President
Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter is University Professor of Jewish History and Jewish Thought and Senior Scholar at the Center for the Jewish Future at Yeshiva University. From 2000-2005 he served as Dean of the Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik Institute in Boston. Before joining the faculty of Yeshiva University in 2005 he served as a rabbi in a number of communities, from 1977-1981 at the Young Israel of Sharon, MA, from 1981-2000 at The Jewish Center, a prominent synagogue in New York City, and from 2000-2005 at the Maimonides Minyan in Brookline, MA.
Dr. Schacter holds a Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages from Harvard University and received rabbinic ordination from Mesivta Torah Vodaath. He graduated from Brooklyn College in 1973, Summa Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa, was a Teaching Fellow at Harvard from 1978-1980, and served as Director of Yeshiva University’s Torah u-Madda Project from 1986-1997. In 1995, he was awarded the prestigious Daniel Jeremy Silver Fellowship from the Department of Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations, Harvard University, and in 2014 he was awarded the Chelst Grant for Publication Assistance from Yeshiva University.
Dr. Schacter is co-author of the award winning A Modern Heretic and a Traditional Community: Mordecai M. Kaplan, Orthodoxy, and American Judaism published by Columbia University Press in 1996, author of The Lord is Righteous in All His Ways: Reflections on the Tish‘ah be-Av Kinot by Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (2006) and close to one hundred articles and reviews in Hebrew and English. He is also the editor of Reverence, Righteousness and Rahamanut: Essays in Memory of Rabbi Dr. Leo Jung (1992), Jewish Tradition and The Nontraditional Jew (1992), and the award winning Judaism's Encounter with other Cultures: Rejection or Integration? (1997), and co-editor of The Complete Service for the Period of Bereavement (1995) and New Perspectives on Jewish-Christian Relations: In Honor of David Berger (Brill, 2012). He is the Founding Editor of The Torah u-Madda Journal, a prestigious academic publication which has gained international acclaim.
Rabbi Schacter holds a number of prominent Jewish communal positions and is on the Editorial Boards of Tradition, Jewish Action, BDD (Bechal Derachecha Da’ehu) and Jewish Educational Leadership. In November, 2007, he was the Scholar-in-Residence at the General Assembly of the United Jewish Communities in Nashville, TN and, in March, 2016, was invited to address the opening plenary of the Jewish Funder’s Network Conference in La Jolla, CA.
Co-founder & Secretary/Treasurer
Steve Lamar is an accomplished government relations advocate, having helped a variety of organizations represent their interests before the U.S. government for nearly 30 years. He previously worked for the U.S. Commerce Department, advising U.S. companies how to do business in Africa, and as a Peace Corps Volunteer teacher in the southern African country of Botswana. A graduate of Colgate University and George Washington University, Steve was named a Presidential Management Intern in 1989. Steve is involved in his synagogue and community, where he has been a leader of the local Jewish Boy Scout troop and Cub Scout pack. In his spare time, Steve enjoys running, and has completed 11 marathons. He is an active writer, having been published in dozens of publications and journals and is an enthusiastic amateur genealogist.
RACHEL S. SILVERMAN
Rachel S. Silverman is a professional genealogist and founder of Silverman Genealogy Services. She has been honing her research skills for over 15 years, specializing in Jewish genealogy in North America, the United Kingdom, Eastern Europe, and Germany. Her expertise in online and technological resources opens up an entire universe of records and indexes, which is steadily expanding as municipalities across the globe digitize their archival holdings. Through her studies and training as a classical singer (in a former life), Rachel has also had the opportunity to study multiple languages, including German, Czech, French, Spanish, and Latin, which she puts to good use in her research. Rachel has written extensively about Jewish genealogy for Genealogists.com, and her writings have also been featured on FamilyHistoryDaily.com. Rachel has a Bachelor's Degree (Magna cum Laude) from New York University. She is also a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists and the Jewish Genealogical Society of New York. She lives in lower Manhattan with her husband, two children, and two very lucky black cats.