Teitelbaum was an attorney and a partner in the firm of Donavan, Leisure, Newton & Irvine. He helped found the orchestra, then known as the Brooklyn Philharmonica, in 1954, and was president until 1962. He then served as chairman of the group's board until 1972.
The Philharmonic, which changed its name in 1982, is now celebrating its 50th anniversary. It has become known for performing new music, with over 150 premieres to its credit.
Teitelbaum, a Brooklyn native, was a pianist who accompanied silent films as a teenager. Richard Teitelbaum, one of his two sons, is a composer and a professor of music at Bard College.