Hugh was born and raised in Johannesburg South Africa, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts with majors in English Literature and Law at the University of the Witwatersrand, followed by a Bachelor of Laws. Hugh served for two years in the South African Air Force as a Law Officer and was awarded the Gold Certificate of Merit by the Officer Commanding Air Force Headquarters for outstanding services rendered as a National Serviceman. He attained the rank of Full Lieutenant.
Hugh has been a practicing attorney since 1986. He has a general practice with particular expertise in commercial litigation and family law. Hugh is a former Gauteng Chairman of the IUA-UCF, former Chairman of Keter Torah Congregation Sydenham Johannesburg, and a current Trustee of the Rambam Charitable Trust which has offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town. Hugh has conducted services on the High Holy Days at the Pine Street Synagogue, Sunny Road Synagogue and Northcliff Synagogue for almost 30 years, and presently teaches Jewish Law, philosophy, and ethics on a weekly basis.
Hugh has become well known for his published articles, series on South African television (YouTube), radio, and very popular audio-visual presentations on Jewish communities across the globe. For the past 26 years, Hugh has lectured across South Africa and internationally, on the Jews of Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus, Russia, Portugal, Spain, Greece, Rhodes, India, Italy, Argentina, China, Japan, and Morocco. Hugh is a Scholar in Residence for Jewish Heritage Tours and has led tours to India, Morocco, Lithuania, Latvia, Belarus, Budapest, Bratislava, and Vienna.