Telushkin attended the Yeshivah of Flatbush, was ordained at Yeshiva University, and studied Jewish history at Columbia University.
Telushkin serves as a rabbi for the Los Angeles-based Synagogue for the Performing Arts founded in 1972 by Rabbi Jerome Cutler. He is an associate of the National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership. He is a former director of education at the Brandeis-Bardin Institute. Telushkin is also a Senior Associate with CLAL (The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership), and is a member of the board of directors of the Jewish Book Council. He was a major force behind 1996 Senate Resolution 151, establishing a "National Speak No Evil Day" in the United States.
Telushkin's book, Jewish Literacy: The Most Important Things to Know About the Jewish Religion, Its People and Its History, is one of the best-selling books on Judaism of the past two decades. The first volume of A Code of Jewish Ethics, entitled A Code of Jewish Ethics: You Shall be Holy, which Telushkin regards as his major life's work, was published in 2006. The second volume, entitled, A Code of Jewish Ethics: Love Your Neighbor, was released in 2009.
Telushkin tours the United States as a lecturer on Jewish topics.