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Entrepreneurs

Beatrice Alexander

"Madame" Beatrice Alexander knew how to dream big. Born into a world in which many women worked but few achieved prominence in business, she built her own company virtually singlehandedly. Raised amidst teeming poverty, she amassed a significant fortune. From the obscurity of an immigrant neighborhood, she became one of the foremost female entrepreneurs of the twentieth century.

Esther Kasle Jones, 1915 - 1994

She was a strong leader—head of the women's division of the UJA in Detroit, and later on the national women’s division board (she never made a fuss about that—it was her turn to do it so she did it; this was her attitude). In all these and other philanthropic enterprises she preferred to be in the background; she let others take credit for successes and worked quietly for what she thought was important. But she always went out of her way to work with the next generation, mentoring them and training them to become the leaders of tomorrow.

The New York Times profiles Kosher food matriarch Regina Margareten at age 95

December 24, 1957

Regina Margareten, the "matriarch of the Kosher food industry," was profiled in the "New York Times" the day before her 95th birthday.

Tillie Lewis opens cannery for American-grown Italian tomatoes

July 13, 1935

Tillie Lewis, who introduced Italian tomatoes to America, opened the first cannery owned by a woman on her 34th birthday.

Jennie Grossinger Day!

June 16, 1968

Governor Nelson Rockefeller designated Jennie Grossinger Day in New York State, the first time this honor was bestowed on a living woman.

Estelle Joan Sommers takes over Capezio

June 1, 1964

Estelle Joan Sommers, dancewear manufacturer and philanthropist, made headlines when she took over her husband's Capezio shop.

"New York Times" profiles entrepreneur Lillian Vernon

April 26, 1978

Entrepreneur Lillian Vernon was profiled in the "New York Times" as the "first lady of mail order catalogues."

Frieda Caplan founds innovative specialty produce company

April 2, 1962

Frieda Caplan opened her specialty produce company, Frieda's Inc., which has introduced a wide array of exotic produce to the American market.

Ruth Mosko Handler unveils Barbie Doll

March 9, 1959

Ruth Mosko Handler unveiled the Barbie Doll at the International American Toy Fair in New York.

Brothel-keeper Polly Adler jailed

March 5, 1935

Polly Adler, one of America's best-known madams, was jailed after a police raid on her Saratoga Springs brothel.

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How to cite this page

Jewish Women's Archive. "Entrepreneurs." (Viewed on December 9, 2018) <https://jwa.org/topics/entrepreneurs>.

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