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Gerda Lerner

Courtesy Gerda Lerner

We Remember

This growing online collection contains reminiscences of a variety of recently deceased American Jewish women who made a difference in their community and beyond.

Showing 26 - 50 of 176
Gerda Lerner, 1920 - 2013
Lerner's life experience equipped her to resist conformity—in particular, questioning the societal norms insisting that women had no history.
G Penner headshot 2003
Gloria Stern Penner, 1931 - 2012
In the 1970s, I was a vigorous believer that women needed better representation in business and society, and I worked hard to make that happen. I doubt my demeanor resembled the TV-film stereotype of the obedient, dutiful babe in the background.
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Dorrit Zucker Cohn, 1924 - 2012
I most value the example Dorrit set with her integrity, modesty, and precision in teaching, advising, and scholarship.  She was respectful and generous with her time, and she never overstepped.
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Lynn Gordon, 1946 - 2012
She believed deeply in the enduring importance of feminism, a political force which transformed the world but one Lynn believed had much more to accomplish. She was a deep believer in social justice and also in the centrality and needs of the State of Israel."
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Joyce D. Miller, 1928 - 2012
In addition to being a great friend to many and a loving mother, daughter, and sister, she was a Tzaddik.
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Frances Alenikoff , 1920 - 2012
For decades and well into her 90s she turned age on its head, subverting its preconceptions, making it an adventure.
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Judith Martin, 1918 - 2012
From 1963-2009, she developed a contemporary theater for children. The shows intimately reflected a child’s world.
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Anita Steckel, 1930 - 2012
She taught in such a simple, loving way and made everyone feel safe. “You're allowed to mess up here,” she would say. “It's OK to fall.”
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Amy Swerdlow, 1923 - 2012
This beautiful, wise and not-so-organized woman [was] not only a superb organizer but also an inspiring teacher and a colleague who exemplified what it means to meet one’s obligations to the human family.
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Nora Ephron, 1941 - 2012
For all her acerbic humor, she was always warm to me. For all her Jewish disconnection, she felt utterly Jewish to me.
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Adrienne Rich, 1929 - 2012
Rich’s commitment to social justice that characterized her sustained engagement in the world emerged from the provocation and the aspiration that was her Jewishness.
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Myra Hiatt Kraft, 1942 - 2011
I will remember Myra as a giving, passionate, courageous fighter for social justice for all and a lover of Israel and the Jewish people.
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Mollie Weinstein Schaffer, 1916 - 2012
We are finally in Paris and you can see that the Americans took over the situation. Can you imagine—ME—with the “handle” that I’ve got using Hitler’s stationery?
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Ruth Barcan Marcus, 1921 - 2012
Not afraid to make enemies and blessed with many loyal friends, [she] was unrelenting and consistent in upholding the highest standards for rigor and clarity in philosophy and in academia more generally.
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Lucy Kramer Cohen, 1907 - 2007
She never put herself in the limelight to lead and yet she was a leader.
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Annette Baran, 1927 - 2010
Annette made a huge difference in people’s awareness and understanding of the importance of truth and the civil right of access to one’s birth certificates and to information about one’s self.
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Sheila Cheimets , 1936 - 2011
She never put much stock in her pioneering achievements ... until she became a grandmother... It was when she had her granddaughters around her that she began to think about what their lives were going to be like.
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Beatrice L. Garber, 1912 - 1999
While she wasn’t your typical 'Bubbe,' cooking brisket or baking kugel, she was a gifted public speaker and totally dedicated to Hadassah, her synagogue, the Land of Israel, the Jewish people, and her family.
Clara Schiffer Headshot
Clara Schiffer, 1911 - 2009
She faced discrimination overtly as a Jew and less overtly as a working woman... Those experiences sensitize people to what fair treatment is. We knew that to be fair was important, to work for improving the world an essential task.
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Bernice W. Kliman, 1933 - 2011
She found that her feminism conflicted with the synagogue practice of denying women a place on the bimah. Only later did she [find] a sympathetic rabbi and a group of congregants who also believed in women’s equality.
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Shulamith Soloveitchik Meiselman, 1912 - 2009
She was born into a family of great rabbis and scholars; if she had been born a boy, her path would have been clear. Having been born a girl, she had to find her way. She did so with great success in her public and private lives, and did so with wisdom and grace.
BJ Lifton Headshot
Betty Jean Lifton, 1926 - 2010
BJ made an amazing difference in the lives of adopted people, birthparents, and adoptive parents and professionals. She never wavered in her beliefs, and in her stand for human rights in adoption.
Paula Hyman teaching
Paula Hyman, 1946 - 2011

We should hear her when we need courage to oppose sexism, whether political, historical, or unconscious; when we strive to balance family commitments with demands of career; and when we seek to follow in her footsteps to chart new paths in making and writing Jewish history.

Adrienne Cooper performing with Mikveh
Adrienne Cooper, 1946 - 2011
Beyond her extraordinary artistic accomplishments, Adrienne was a mentor, resource, and role model to so many who have lived, or at least sojourned, in Yiddishland.
Raysa Bonow with her dogs
Raysa Rose Bonow, 1931 - 2011
There are the doers in this world and there are the passive people who live vicariously through the doers. Thinking and learning is doing, because it makes you active and aware of your life


How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "We Remember." (Viewed on November 24, 2015) <>.


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