Charles Jacobs (political activist)

Charles Jacobs
Born Newark, New Jersey
Alma mater Rutgers University, Harvard University
Known for political activist

Charles Jacobs is the co-founder of the American Anti-Slavery Group (1994), which campaigns against slavery worldwide, and a co-chairman of The Sudan Campaign (2000), a coalition calling for an end to slavery in Sudan.[1] He also served as Deputy Director of the Boston chapter of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America,[2] and co-founded The David Project Center for Jewish Leadership in 2002, which he led until July 2008.[3]

Jacobs has appeared on CBS's This Morning, ABC's World News Tonight, and National Public Radio's Talk of the Nation. His work has been published in The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The New Yorker, and The Wall Street Journal.[1]


Early life and education

Jacobs was born in Newark, New Jersey.[4] He was active in the civil rights movement as a teenager, and in 1963, attended Martin Luther King's March on Washington.[1] He graduated from Rutgers University in 1966[5] and earned a Doctor of Education degree (Ed.D.) from Harvard University in 1988.[6]


In the late 1980s, Jacobs served as the Deputy Director of the Boston Chapter of the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA), a media watchdog that responds to media bias against Israel. Throughout the following decade, he pursued a career as an international management consultant, working as a publicist, advertising campaign promoter, and speech writer for several organizations and became a member of public relations firm and speakers' bureau Benador Associates.

He learned about the continuing existence of slavery in North Africa in 1993.[1] The next year Jacobs left his job to found the American Anti-Slavery Group with African human rights activists Mohamed Athie of Mauritania and David Chand of Sudan, beginning to work full-time as the organization's first research director.[7]

He was appointed director of The Sudan Campaign in May 2000,[1] serving as one of its four co-chairmen since 2004.[8] On September 18, 2000, in recognition of his work for the American Anti-Slavery Group and as its president, he received the Boston Freedom Award in a ceremony attended by Boston mayor Thomas Menino and Coretta Scott King, who presented it.[9]

On September 28, 2000, he testified to the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, along with three survivors of slavery from around the world. In April 2001, he "joined a slave redemption mission in Sudan that helped liberate over 2,900 enslaved women and children."[1]

After September 11, 2001, Jacobs joined the Board of Advisors of the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, created in response to the events of 9/11 and the War on Terrorism. He founded The David Project Center for Jewish Leadership in 2002. The next year, in 2003, Mohamed Athie became president of the AASG, while Jacobs served on its board as its treasurer.[10] In July 2008, Jacobs resigned as President of the David Project "in order to focus on a new initiative in support of the Jewish community."[3]


Mosaic: World News from the Middle East

At a public meeting in January 2004, Jacobs, along with other community leaders, opposed broadcasts on a cable TV Public-access television station, in Newton, Massachusetts, of the program Mosaic: World News from the Middle East, which supporters of the broadcasts agreed contains "anti-Semitic and anti-American content." Noting that Newton has a sizable Jewish population, he likened the station's broadcasting Mosaic to public television broadcasting David Duke in Roxbury: "That's like bringing the KKK into Newton. It's not diversity, it's hate speech. Newton is a progressive city. This will not bring us more truth, as the proponents think, about the Islamic world, but less truth." In particular, he protested the program's portrayal of Arab media:

These stations, in Arabic, in their un-whitewashed form, teach the Arab world that the Jews are killers. To pretend that these stations are like an Arab version of CNN is a lie, it's a deception. And that deception shouldn't be broadcast because it falsely represents these stations.[11]

Americans for Peace and Tolerance

He is a co-founder of Americans for Peace and Tolerance, along with Boston College political science professor Dennis Hale (an Episcopal layman), and Islamic scholar Sheikh Dr. Ahmed Subhy Mansour.[12] Its purpose is to "promote peaceful coexistence in an ethnically diverse America by educating the American public about the need for a moderate political leadership that supports tolerance and core American values in communities across the nation."[13] The group is a primary critic of the $15.6 million mosque in Roxbury Crossing, which the group asserts is led by extremist leaders and contributors.[14][15]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f Biography for Charles Jacobs[dead link] at Benador Associates; cf. "'Freedom Brigade' Theme of Speakers Forum"[dead link], archived online in The Jewish Journal (Boston North) May 10–23, 2002. Retrieved July 25, 2006.
  2. ^ "A Brief History of CAMERA." After 1991, the Boston chapter, founded in 1988 and headed by Andrea Levin, "became the national – and eventually the only – office of CAMERA. . . ."
  3. ^ a b "The "David Project Announces Change in Leadership" | The David Project Website". March 19, 2010. Retrieved March 23, 2010. [dead link]
  4. ^ Information from Charles Jacobs, free audio excerpt, "Freeing Modern-Day Slaves: Program 15", produced by Human Media. Retrieved July 25, 2006.
  5. ^ Online alumni record locator, Rutgers University. Retrieved July 29, 2006.
  6. ^ Harriett Green, "The Alumni: Social Educator," Harvard Magazine May–June 2002. Retrieved July 29, 2006.
  7. ^ Press release AASG "Profile," n.d. (copyright 2003–2006), accessed July 25, 2006. [N.B.: The date of this press release is unknown; however, compared to more recent sources (e.g., corporate filings in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts), some of its information appears not to be current; it may date from 2003–2004.] Cf. information from free audio excerpt of Charles Jacobs, "Freeing Modern-Day Slaves: Program 15."
  8. ^ "Thank you CBC": Letter to the Honorable Sanford Bishop, October 8, 2004, The Sudan Campaign n.d.. Retrieved July 27, 2006.
  9. ^ The "Boston Freedom Award Program" was part of "Boston 2000"; see "Millennium Events in Massachusetts: Boston 2000," online posting, Millennium World 1999–2000, accessed July 27, 2006. See also Nat Hentoff, "Caucus Speaks Out on Slavery in Sudan," Jewish World Review December 11, 2000, accessed July 25, 2006. On presenting the award, the late Mrs. King appealed to "'all freedom-loving people to become informed about slavery in Sudan and other nations, to help us build a global movement to eradicate this atrocity.'" According to his Benador Associates speakers' bureau biography, Mrs. King also said: "Dr. Jacobs, I am personally inspired by your tireless dedication to alleviate the oppression of chattel slavery," adding "Your efforts have given a powerful voice and new hope to the victims of this festering injustice."
  10. ^ Non-profit corporation "Summary Sheet" for American Anti-Slavery Group, Inc., The Commonwealth of Massachusetts: Corporations Division 2001–2006. Retrieved July 27, 2006.
  11. ^ Sarah Andrews, "Arab News Program Sparks Outcry," The Newton Tab January 20, 2004, Free Press n.d.; Rhonda Stewart, "Middle East News Reports Are Not Welcomed by All," The Boston Globe February 5, 2004; and Matt Viser, "Mideast Cable Show to Air 5 days," The Boston Globe January 6, 2005; all accessed July 30, 2006.
  12. ^ Paulson, Michael (June 28, 2009). "At mosque opening, tensions permeate interfaith gathering – The Boston Globe". Retrieved March 23, 2010. 
  13. ^ "Mission and About Us". Americans for Peace and Tolerance. November 20, 2008. Retrieved February 2, 2010. 
  14. ^ Paulson, Michael (June 26, 2009). "Muslim community to celebrate mosque’s ceremonial opening – The Boston Globe". Retrieved March 23, 2010. 
  15. ^ "Boston area Jews split on Tamir. Russian emigrants demand Israeli envoy's recall, while mainstream groups support him – Jerusalem Post | HighBeam Research – FREE trial". August 11, 2009. Retrieved March 23, 2010. 

External links

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