He was formerly the vice-president of the Orthodox Hebrew Congregation and chairman of their external affairs committee. He was the Mayor of Hackney Borough Council four times in a row. He was for many years the only non-Labour party councillor in Hackney. He was the leader of the Conservative group of Councillors until 1997. In 2012 Joe Lobenstein was appointed as President of the Stamford Hill Shomrim, a Jewish volunteer Neighbourhood Patrol Group.
Lobenstein was awarded with an MBE honour in 1980 for his outstanding political and social activities in the London Borough of Hackney. He and his family fled from Hanover and the Nazis in 1939. In addition to the many public offices he held, he also managed an electrical wholesale business, started in a back room of a house in Fairholt Road in 1949 and now based in the old Metal Box premises in Grosvenor Way, Clapton. He and his wife Bella (who is Swiss) have eight children and many grandchildren.
He entered local politics in 1962 as a member of the former Metropolitan Borough of Stoke Newington and became a councillor for the London Borough of Hackney in 1968. Mr Lobenstein has served in many capacities, as an alderman from 1971 to 1974 and as chair of the Planning and Highways Committee from 1970 to 1971. He may be best remembered by local people for coining the phrase 'Mr and Mrs Hackney', which became a catch phrase in debates in the council chamber and the local papers.
Lobenstein, served as a Councillor in Hackney for more than thirty years, he is a notable member of the Jewish community. In 1997, he was awarded Freedom of the Borough in honour of his eminent service to the Council and the borough.
- Unprecedented Fourth Reelection of Hackney Mayor Lobenstein http://www.chareidi.org/archives5760/behar/alobnste.htm
- Shechita UK launched Archived 2006-05-19 at the Wayback Machine.
- Councillor Lobenstein elected Mayor of Hackney for third time in a row https://web.archive.org/web/20060727075319/http://www.hackney.gov.uk/servapps/pressrelease/prmay99/pr184.htm
- Terror in London: Blacks, Asians and Jews on attack alert[permanent dead link], The Independent, May 2, 1999 by Hilary Clarke and Rezayk Laskar
- Outrage over mixed-sex hospital wards, The Jewish Chronicle, 18 January 2008, by Candice Krieger
- Councillor Lobenstein elected Mayor of Hackney for third time in a row Archived 2006-07-27 at the Wayback Machine., Hackney Borough Council, 13/5/99
- Mayor elected for the second time Archived 2006-07-27 at the Wayback Machine., Hackney Borough Council
- Stamford Hill Shomrim - About http://www.londonshomrim.com/about-us.html
- Joe Lobenstein, Hackney councillor - obituary http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/11729216/Joe-Lobenstein-Hackney-councillor-obituary.html
- "Joe Lobenstein MBE: Diane Abbott leads tributes to Orthodox Jewish community stalwart, dead at 88". The Evening Standard.
- "Shomrim N.E. London on Twitter". Twitter.