Austin gains some prominent Scientologists

American-Statesman, Texas/January 26, 2013

Tommy Davis figures prominently in Lawrence Wright's new book, "Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief." While Wright was researching his book, Davis and wife Jessica Feshbach were the top two spokespeople for Scientology and were associates of leading Scientology celebrity Tom Cruise.

"No member of the Sea Org (a Scientology group) has spent more time in Cruise's service than Tommy Davis, who was viewed within the church as the star's special handler and personal assistant," Wright says in "Going Clear."

Near the end of "Going Clear," Wright reveals that Davis, the son of Hollywood actress Anne Archer, and Feshbach are on a leave of absence from the Sea Org, in part because Feshbach is ill. Wright says that they're currently living in Texas.

In fact, the two are living in the Westlake area in a home that they purchased in May of last year, according to property tax records. Feshbach's mother, Cindy, lives in a downtown Austin condo. And Jessica's father, Joseph, died in August 2011 while riding a bicycle on a path in the Sun Valley neighborhood of Elkhorn, Idaho.

When Joseph Feshbach died, the Idaho Mountain Express identified him as a "55-year-old Austin, Texas, man." But both of Jessica's parents have been well-known in Scientology circles.

Joseph Feshbach was featured prominently in a 1991 Time magazine article titled "The Thriving Cult of Greed and Power." Reporter Richard Behar wrote that Joseph Feshbach and his two brothers, who were living in Palo Alto, Calif., at the time, were "the leading short sellers in the U.S. with more than $500 million under management." They were known as yhe "terrors of the stock exchanges," spreading false information about companies to drive down their valuations, Behard wrote. He went on to describe the brothers' financial success and wrote: "They say … they owe it all to the teachings of Scientology, whose ‘war chest' has received more than $1 million from the family."

Before moving to Austin, Cindy Feshbach was executive director of two Missions of Scientology in Northern California.

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