The Ben Zakkai Honor Society (BZHS) of NCSY, the international youth program of the Orthodox Union, will induct Rabbi Yerachmiel “Rocky” Caine of Baltimore as a new member at the 14th Annual Ben Zakkai Honor Society Scholarship Reception, Sunday, January 10 at the Lincoln Square Synagogue in New York. The evening will also pay tribute to the legendary legacy of Moses I. Feuerstein, z”l, honor three individuals and induct four other new members.
BZHS is an alumni “Hall of Fame” whose new members are nominated by, and voted on, by its current members based on the nominees’ service to NCSY and the Jewish community. The Society’s main function is to raise funds for scholarships for high school NCSYers for summer programs in North America and Israel. The Society has helped pay tribute for more than forty years to esteemed NCSY alumni and community leaders who have demonstrated their dedication to Torah and their service to the Jewish people. Isabel Novak of Los Angeles serves as Chair of the BZHS.
Dinner proceeds go towards direct scholarships for NCSY members to continue their Jewish education after high school, or to participate in national NCSY programs, such as Camp Sports for Boys, National Yarchei Kallah, and Summer Experience for Girls.
Rabbi Rocky Caine began his professional career in NCSY five years ago as the Philadelphia Coordinator of Atlantic Seaboard NCSY. The opportunity to return to NCSY and be a part of an organization that meant so much to him as a teen was too important to pass up. At that the time Philadelphia NCSY was the weakest part of the Atlantic Seaboard NCSY, bringing only 20 NCSYers to the spring regional. After a few short months Rabbi Rocky was able to turn around Philadelphia NCSY, and brought more than 70 NCSYers to Fall Regional. Philadelphia NCSY quickly became the strongest city in Atlantic Seaboard.
Rabbi Rocky was instrumental in establishing several Latte Learning programs and Jewish Student Union clubs in public schools, as well as taking a very active role in the local Jewish day schools. In a short time, he turned what was once deemed a dead NCSY town in to one of the strongest and most proud.
After three years in Philadelphia, Rabbi Rocky and his family moved to Baltimore so he could assume a role of Assistant Regional Director at regional headquarters. In his first year in Baltimore he was able to double the attendance of NCSYers at local and regional programming. Rabbi Rocky is an expert recruiter and is able to form strong community relationships. The Caine home is always open to NCSYers.
An alumnus of the NCSY’s Northeast Philadelphia chapter, Rabbi Rocky credits his involvement in NCSY as a prime motivating factor in his decision to leave public high school and attend Yeshiva Shaarei Torah of Monsey, NY. After high school Rocky attended Yeshivas Mikdash Melech and later studied and taught in Yeshivas Ner Yakov, both in Jerusalem. Rabbi Rocky also attended Ner LeElef and obtained smicha from Rav Zalman Nechemiah Goldberg. Prior to joining NCSY, Rocky was the Outreach Director for Bensalem Jewish Outreach Center in Bucks County, PA.
Rabbi Rocky is married to the former Bracha Fergusson of Baltimore. Bracha obtained her MSW from the School of Social Work at Temple University. Bracha and Rocky are the parents of three daughters, Chavi, Yaffa and Rina.