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Judge George Z. Medalie, Outstanding Jewish Leader, Dies; Was Active in Civic Affairs

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George Z. Medalie, Associate Judge of the New York part of Appeals and outstanding Jewish leader, died here today. He was 62. Judge Medalie was taken ill last Thursday.

Born on New York’s East Side, the son of a rabbi, Medalie rose to prominence as an attorney, public official, Jewish leader and philanthropist. He was president of the New York Federation of Jewish Philanthropies, one of the active leaders of the American Jewish Committee, the Joint Distribution Committee, the Y.M.H.A. and, at one time, of the American Jewish Congress. He also held important posts in legal societies of various times, including the chairmanship of the N.Y. Bar Association. In 1932 he was on the Republican Party ticket for United States Senator form New York, while holding the position of U.S. Attorney.

Judge Medalie was named to the New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest, that September, by Gov. Dewey whose political mentor he had been for many years. Prior this appointment, Medalie devoted much time, in his capacity as chairman of the foreign affairs committee of the American Jewish Committee, to seeking guarantees of will rights for liberated Jews in Europe.

Judge Joseph M. Proskauer, president of the American Jewish Committee, and Dr. Ben Slawson, executive vice-president, today issued the following joint statement morning the death of Judge Medalie: “The lose of our distinguished citizen and public servant, George Z. Medalie, will be widely felt, but by none more deeply than his colleagues and follow-members of the American Jewish Committee. Recently elected honorary vice-president of our organization, Judge Medalie, prior to his elevation to the bench, served as chairman of our overseas committee, in which capacity his wisdom and devotion were invaluable in aiding us to meet our responsibilities to our suffering brethren abroad.”

Edward M.M.Warburg, chairman of the Joint Distribution Committee, issued a statement declaring: “The Joint Distribution Committee mourns the passing of George Z. Medalie. He took a deep and abiding interesting the relief and rehabilitation of dismissed Jews overseas and was an active figure in the activities of the J.D.C. His losing is a severe blow not only to the Joint Distribution Committee which he served well, but also to the cause of the Jewish survivor in Europe in whose behalf he served unstintingly during the years of their greatest tragedy.”

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