Meet the Rabbi


Rabbi Mendel Gurkow was born on August 29, 1963 in the Mattapan section of Boston. He received his elementary and high school education at the renowned Oholei Torah Yeshiva in Brooklyn, NY. In the spring of 1982, he was sent as one of six emissaries to teach at the Yeshiva College of Melbourne, Australia and helped invigorate and enrich the Jewish community. Rabbi Gurkow spent two of his most cherished and memorable years in Melbourne, and gained much experience in the areas of social communication, bringing people together and community programming.

Rabbi Gurkow returned to Brooklyn to study at the Rabbinical College of the United Lubavitcher Yeshiva. Under the guidance of the late, distinguished Rosh Yeshiva, Rabbi Yitzchak Pikarski, he thrived in his studies and eventually was awarded “Semicha” (Rabbinical Ordination). During the summer of 1985 to 1987, he directed the Summer Camp of Shaloh House in Milton, MA. It was there where he learned the wonderful joy of working with children.
In the summer of 1987, Rabbi Gurkow started and led a community Shabbat Service at the Shaloh House in Stoughton, MA. He effectively recruited a fellowship for a weekly Minyan for Shabbat and Jewish Holidays.
Shortly thereafter, he met his wife, Chana, an elementary school teacher. They married in June of 1987. With the Blessings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, they moved to Stoughton, MA to start the Shaloh House Lubavitch Educational Center. They immediately opened a preschool and summer camp program as well as establishing a Synagogue and Adult Education classes.
Since then, Rabbi Mendel and Chana have succeeded in building a vibrant and growing community in the South Shore with an energetic team of supporters, activists, and staff personnel, making Shaloh House the leading Jewish education and outreach center south of Boston.
Rabbi Mendel and Chana are the proud parents of Chaya Mushka, Bracha, Yisrael, Bluma, Frayda, Shterna Sara, Elchonon, Sonya, Sholom, and Minda.
Board of Directors
James Sheroff - President


Office Staff
Rabbi Mendel Gurkow - Rabbi 
Chana Gurkow - Co-Director, Women's Programing
Simmie Hefetz - Preschool & Early Childhood Care Director
Chana Gurkow - Developer-Hebrew Curriculum


Preschool Staff
  Simmie Hefetz


  Opal McDonnell 


  Dawn Leifer & Cyre Feldman

Early Learners

  Linda Ingle, Margie Gordon Hurwitz,
Ruth Freeman & Debbie Greenstein  
Shayna Goldberg & Marcia Schwartz