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Ari Teman

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Ari Teman (born May 10, 1982) is an American comedian, entrepreneur, founder of 12gurus:Charity, 12gurus:Health, JCorps, author, and the 2009 Jewish Community Hero of the Year, as named by the Jewish Federations of North America.


Teman received a B.A. with honors in psychology and studio arts from Brandeis University in 2005.[1][not in citation given]


Ari Teman headshot
Ari Teman at Stand Up NY.

Teman is a regular at clubs in New York City, has appeared in commercials for VH1 and Tic Tac,[2] and began appearing in January, 2011 as a regular panelist on MSNBC.[citation needed] He appeared in an episode of Fry's Planet Word on BBC with comedian Stephen Fry. Teman is frequently hired[citation needed] to perform at charity events and colleges around North America.

In January 2009, Teman's joke, "There are people who still don't wear seat belts. I don't get it. I get people not wearing condoms -- both protective devices -- but nobody has ever put on a seat belt and thought, It doesn't feel like I'm driving." appeared as Joke of the week in Time Out New York.[3]

His joke, "Ikea is a good place to pick up a girl who's not looking for something permanent" was Joke of the Week in the same publication in March 2014.[4]


Teman is the founder and volunteer executive director of JCorps International, a volunteer network operating in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. JCorps groups Jewish young adults ages 18–30 to volunteer for a few hours on a Sunday (Friday in Israel) or weeknight. JCorps feeds over 20,000 meals a year, visits hundreds of seniors in centers, children in hospitals, and beautifies acres of parks and beaches.

In 2008, Teman made The Jewish Week's list "36 Under 36" for his work with JCorps.[5]

In November 2009, Teman was awarded the "North American Jewish Community Hero" award at the Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly. He was selected over 400 other nominees in a competition with over 600,000 votes, and received a US$25,000 award.[6][7]


Teman is the founder of the 12gurus:Health conference, which brings together leading thinkers to discuss innovation in delivering healthcare. Speakers are heads of departments at top-ranked universities, medical centers, and companies, including Mayo Clinic, Harvard, MIT Media Lab, Columbia University, UNC, NYU, University of Michigan, Dartmouth, IBM and more. Videos of the conference talks, which are under 20 minutes, are available free to the world.

Teman is the founder of the international 12gurus:Charity conference, which brings together leading thinkers to discuss innovation in the non-profit and philanthropy sectors. Speakers have included best-selling author and blogger Seth Godin, founder of Dress for Success and Do Something CEO Nancy Lublin, Scott Belsky, Scott Case, Scott Harrison, Jonathan Greenblatt, and other notable leaders. Videos of the conference talks, which are under 20 minutes, are available free to the world. A video featuring Sasha Dichter of the Acumen Fund garnered over 450,000 views on TED.com and sparked the creation of Generosity Day.

Teman is the creator of GatherGrid, an event-time polling service called, "the most useful interface I've seen to-date" by Inc Magazine.

In November 2010, Teman released the first edition of Effective Gratitude for Organizations and Individuals, a short book with direct advice on harnessing gratitude for use in corporate and personal productivity. The book builds upon positive psychology and neuro-linguistic programming. The foreword is written by Nancy Lublin.

AirBnB case[edit]

In March 2014, Teman rented out his apartment via the website AirBnB to David Carter, an AirBNB verified user with three positive reviews. The renter stated he intended to use it for a "brother- and sister-in-law" in town for a wedding. However, "David" turned out to be using the apartment instead for a Twitter-announced, paid sexual "XXX Freak Fest", damaging property and furniture.[8] Teman made a police complaint. The story went viral, reaching the #1 trending topic on Facebook, and was covered by national and international media.[9]

Legal issues[edit]

In March 2014, Martin P. Feinberg, a Manhattan public relations executive, filed a lawsuit against Teman alleging that the comedian offered Feinberg's real estate for sale without a license and, when asked to stop, emailed the man's wife alleging an affair in retaliation. Teman said, Feinberg's claims were baseless.[10]

Charitable activity[edit]

In addition to founding JCorps and 12gurus:Charity, Teman is active with or supports Shalva the Israel special needs organization, The Tomorrow's Children's Fund child cancer center, Chabad Young Professionals, Chabad on Campus, Jewish Children's Museum, Friendship Circle, charity: water, Pencils of Promise, and performs or MC's pro-bono at many charity events.


  • 2008 winner of the first Coroflot One Hour Design Competition, run by Core77
  • 2009 "North American Jewish Community Hero" award at the Jewish Federations of North America General Assembly


  1. "Brandeis Magazine Class Notes 2005". Spring 2011. Retrieved 21 October 2011.
  2. http://www.jpost.com/Home/Article.aspx?id=180865
  3. Out, Time (2009-01-29). "TimeOut NY". Newyork.timeout.com. Retrieved 2014-06-28.
  4. Out, Time (2014-03-19). "Joke of the week: Ari Teman". Timeout.com. Retrieved 2014-06-28.
  5. Week, Jewish. "The Jewish Week". The Jewish Week. Retrieved 2014-06-28.
  6. Berkman, Jacob (2009-11-10). "JTA". JTA. Retrieved 2014-06-28.
  7. http://www.forward.com/articles/118686/
  8. "A New York Airbnb Trip Turns Into 'XXX Freak Fest'". Mashable. 2013-03-17. Retrieved 2014-03-17.
  9. http://www.inc.com/will-yakowicz/how-to-make-the-most-out-of-an-orgy.html
  10. Marsh, Julia (28 March 2014), Comedian outs exec’s affair as ‘payback’ for bad deal: suit, retrieved 2 July 2014

External links[edit]


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