Julie Gruenbaum Fax was a senior writer and editor at the Jewish Journal of Los Angeles and has co-authored six personal history books. She is currently writing a book about her grandmother’s Holocaust experience.
Wonder Woman star Gal Gadot opened her Los Angeles home to friends and family earlier this week to commemorate Yom HaShoah by hosting an intimate conversation with Holocaust survivor Celina Biniaz, the youngest female on Oskar Schindler’s famed list.
They have gathered on living room sofas, on university lawns, in synagogue sanctuaries, in public squares, and even in embassy conference rooms for intimate conversations that have a resounding global impact. Since 2011, more than 2 million people have met with Holocaust survivors to learn about their experiences and to help carry their histories and their hopes into the future.
Gerald Szames chokes up easily, especially when talking about his mother. So for years, his daughter has taken it upon herself to tell her father’s story of surviving the Holocaust as a small boy. She speaks to audiences at schools, houses of worship and community centers, often with her father by her side to answer questions.
Dr. Kori Street, Deputy Executive Director of USC Shoah Foundation, was recently appointed to California Governor Gavin Newsom’s Council on Holocaust and Genocide Education.
Governor Newsom launched the council last year to promote Holocaust and genocide education with the goal of providing young people with the tools necessary to recognize and respond to bigotry or discrimination.
When Zuzanna Surowy needed to make herself cry as the lead actress in the Holocaust-era feature film My Name Is Sara, she followed the advice of her co-star to “put a demon inside of her” – to imagine something so tragic it would bring tears to her eyes.
It was much harder for Surowy, then 15, to follow the second half of that directive: to leave the demon on the set.
On a Wednesday morning in New York in the fall of 2021, Rabbi Nicole Auerbach greeted Walter and Phyllis Loeb in Central Synagogue’s majestic sanctuary. She led them through the arch-lined nave, past row after row of pews, beyond the six sets of capital columns wrapped in colorful, gold-accented reliefs, all the way up to the intricately carved Mahagony bima, the stage where the synagogue’s rabbi and cantor preside over Shabbat and holiday services.