Business & Economics

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Sylvia Willard

DAVAR: Vermont Jewish Women's History Project

Sandy Gartner and Ann Buffum interviewed Sylvia Willard on June 29, 2005, in Rutland, Vermont, as part of the Vermont Jewish Women's Oral History Project. Willard shares her family history, growing up in Vermont, her passion for theater, involvement in the Jewish community, meeting her husband Howard, and their successful ventures in the retail industry.

Marjorie Edenfeld

Women Whose Lives Span the Century

Frances Godine interviewed Marjorie Loeb Edenfield on October 31, 1997, in Boston, Massachusetts, as of the Women Whose Lives Spanned the Century Oral History Project. Edenfield reflects on her late accomplishments, experiences of identity, family dynamics, religious affiliation, motherhood, and career at Filene's, and contemplates friendship, spirituality, and gratitude.

Hedy Ratner

Women Who Dared

Rosalind Hinton interviewed Hedy Ratner on January 31, 2007, in Chicago, Illinois, as part of the Women Who Dared Oral History Project. Ratner shares her journey from her childhood in Chicago as an immigrant's child to her experiences with Jewish education, women's liberation, social justice activism, and her evolving relationship with Judaism, highlighting the influential figures and moments in her life.

Ruth Salmonson Krasnoff

Women Whose Lives Span the Century

Miriam Smulow interviewed Ruth Salmonson Krasnoff on January 18, 1983, in Brookline, Massachusetts, as part of the Women Whose Lives Span the Century Oral History Project. Krasnoff shares her family's immigration history, her upbringing in Dorchester, her career in the business world, and her deep connection to Temple Israel.

Writing Home: A Letter from an Early American Jew

Learn about Jewish immigration and the development of the Jewish community in America through a 1790s letter, originally written in Yiddish by Rebecca Samuel to her parents in Hamburg, Germany, describing her life in Petersburg, Virginia.

Contemporary Labor Issues (Module #4)

Examine modern labor justice issues to allow students to consider their own stance on events like the 2013 collapse of a clothing factory in Bangladesh or the reports of poor working conditions in Chinese factories that produce iPhones and iPads.

Judaism, Text Study, and Labor (Module #3)

Study several traditional Jewish texts and apply the concepts in these texts to the stories and characters in the game. Think about the lessons Judaism teaches about the responsibilities of workers and employers.

Maya Franks at a DECA Competition

Shaking it up

Maya Franks

Shaking it up. I’ve never been a typical “shaking it up” type of person, per se. I’ve always been a more “nervously try to go with the flow and hope it ends well” type of gal. However, when I got that question, “How have you shaken things up in your community?”, not one experience came to mind. 

"Sylvia Porter" by Tracy Lucht

Having It All, On Wall Street

Maya Sinclair

As a student applying to college, my peers and teachers regularly ask me what I am interested in studying. However, when I excitedly answer “business and political economics and foreign affairs,” people often raise their eyebrows or look at me as though I have something in my teeth. One recent encounter stands out as particularly shocking.

New York Times Masthead

Weekend Roundup: Jill Abramson is out at the Times

Tara Metal

In the few short days since Jill Abramson’s surprise firing from her post as executive editor of the New York Times, much has been written about her ouster.

Debbie Friedman

The Lives They Lived: Jewish women to remember in 2011

Leah Berkenwald

“[Debbie Friedman] emphasized the value of every voice and the power of song to help us express ourselves and become our best selves. As she wrote for JWA's online exhibit Jewish Women and the Feminist Revolution: 'The more our voices are heard in song, the more we become our lyrics, our prayers, and our convictions.' The woman who wrote the song that asks God to 'help us find the courage to make our lives a blessing' herself modeled for us what that looks like.”—Judith Rosenbaum.
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Women in the workplace: Sheryl Sandberg on negotiating our worth

Leah Berkenwald

A post on Reddit's TwoXChromosomes is bringing attention back to the wage gap and the role that salary negotiation can play.

Bella Abzug on the cover of "Life Magazine," June 9, 1972

Three ways not to celebrate Women's Equality Day

Gloria Feldt

As second wave feminism gathered peak velocity forty years ago, the late bombastic and behatted Congresswoman (D-NY) Bella Abzug persuaded Congress to designate August 26th as Women’s Equality Day. It recognized the 19th Amendment to the Constitution that in 1920 gave all U.S. women the right to vote.

The thing about rings

Kate Bigam

Upon her arrival in Israel this week, a friend of mine picked up this pretty, functional necklace.

Tillie Lewis: More than just about tomatoes

Katherine Romanow

One of the ingredients that is a staple in my kitchen cupboard is canned tomatoes. I will almost always have a can or two around in case I decide I want to make a quick tomato sauce or a pizza, and I especially rely on them throughout the majority of the year when local tomatoes are unavailable. Yet I recently realized that throughout the process of buying, using and consuming these tomatoes, I never stopped to think about their history and how they came to be the product we know today.

Smoked Meat Sandwich

Eating Jewish: Montreal Smoked Meat

Katherine Romanow

The debate over the smoked meat of Montreal and the pastrami of New York continues to elicit strong opinions, with ardent supporters on each side. A quick search on Google reveals numerous magazine articles and blog posts comparing the two. However, I should mention from the outset that I’m not here to do that or say which one is better. I’ve never eaten pastrami (I do intend to rectify that on my next visit to New York) so a comparison of the two isn’t possible.

Eleanor Pearlson, 1921 - 2010

She was known equally for her generosity and her strong will, her enthusiasm and her temper, her warmth and her keen business sense. She might greet you or grill you, but chances were if you needed help with something on Martha’s Vineyard, she had the answer.

Rosetta Reitz, 1924 - 2008

The obituary for Rosetta Reitz in the New York Times portrayed her as a champion of black jazz artists, while the one in the Villager featured the feminist Rosetta who wrote the ground-breaking book on menopause. For me, Rosetta Reitz under her maiden name of Toshka Goldman will always be memorable as the founder of the Four Seasons Bookstore in Greenwich Village.

Florence Melton, 1911 - 2007

It was her conviction that others shared her desire to be a knowledgeable Jew, and her dream was to create the way to provide that knowledge.

Birth of publisher Blanche Wolf Knopf

July 30, 1894

Although her name and work have been overshadowed by those of her husband, Blanche Wolf Knopf carved out her own place in the publishing indus

Tillie Lewis opens cannery for American-grown Italian tomatoes

July 13, 1935

Tillie Lewis, born Myrtle Ehrlich, in Brooklyn, NY, on July 13, 1901, left high school after one year to work in a wholesale grocery.

Aline Milton Bernstein Saarinen becomes first woman to head overseas US TV news bureau

April 13, 1971

Aline Milton Bernstein Saarinen became the first woman to head an overseas television news bureau when she became chief of the National

"New York Times" profiles entrepreneur Lillian Vernon

April 26, 1978

In a New York Times profile published on April 26, 1978, Lillian Vernon was described as "the first lady of mail order catalogues," a designation she had earned through more than two decades of entrepreneurship and steady growth of her eponymous business.

Launch of Advancing Women Professionals and the Jewish Community (AWP)

April 12, 2001

Reflecting frustration with the Jewish communal world's persistent glass ceiling, Advancing Women Professionals and the Jewish Community (AWP) launched its first efforts on April 12, 2001.


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