ADL Changes Top Leadership

The Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith announced today the appointments of Nathan Perlmutter as national director and Abraham H. Foxman as associate national director. Perlmutter will replace Benjamin R. Epstein and Foxman will replace Arnold Forster. Both Epstein and Forster have relinquished their posts after being ADL’s two top executives for the past 30 years.

At the same time, Maxwell E. Greenberg of Los Angeles has been elected national chairman of the ADL. He succeeds Burton M. Joseph of Minneapolis, who served in the post for two years. The announcements of the new appointments and election were made today at the ADL’s national commission meeting at the New York Hilton.

Perlmutter, 55, has been in the human relations field for 29 years. From 1949 to 1965 he successively served ADL as director of its Mountain States civil rights operations and as director of the agency’s regional offices in Michigan, Florida and New York City. From 1965 to 1969, he was associate national director of the American Jewish Committee, and from 1969 to 1973, when he returned to ADL as assistant national director, he was a vice president of Brandeis University.

An attorney with an LLB from New York University School of Law, Perlmutter also studied at the Georgetown University School of Diplomatic and Cansular Practice and at Villanova College. He is the author or two books and has written numerous articles on social and political issues.

Foxman, 38, joined the ADL’s law department in 1965, the same year he received his Juris Doctor degree from New York University School of Law. In 1968, he was appointed director of ADL’s newly-created Middle Eastern affairs department, and in 1973, was named director of leadership development. Foxman was born in Poland and was brought to Vilna, Lithuania, as his parents fled their native land in an effort to keep ahead of the Nazis. When the Germans occupied Vilna and his parents were rounded up with the rest of the city’s Jews, he was saved from a concentration camp by the family’s Polish nursemaid, who claimed he was her baby. Finally reunited with his family, Foxman was brought to the United States in 1950.

A recognized authority on Israel, the Middle East, the Holocaust and Jewish resistance to Nazism, Foxman’s writings an the Holocaust years include contributions to the Encyclopedia Judaica, chapters in four books and political analyses published in numerous periodicals and journals.

Greenberg, 56, has been active with ADL for 25 years. He has served as chairman of the agency’s national executive committee, chairman of its national planning committee, has been a member of its national civil rights committee and of ADL’s Pacific Southwest regional board. Active in numerous other Jewish community affairs, he has also been vice president of the Greater Los Angeles Jewish Federation-Council and chairman of its community relations committee.

Born in Los Angeles, he earned his Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California and graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School. He was one of the original “advocates” on National Educational Television’s program series, “The Advocates.”

NEXT STORY