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Bertha Schoolman, Zionist, Educator, Youth Aliya Leader, Dead at Age 76

January 10, 1974
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Funeral services will be held Sunday for Bertha S. Schoolman, a former national vice-president of Hadassah, and member of its national board since 1935 who died last Sunday in Doctor’s Hospital after a long illness. She was 76 years old. Mrs. Schoolman, born in New York, graduated from Hunter College in 1919 and in 1921 from the Teachers Institute of the Jewish Theological Seminary to which she returned for several years of post-graduate studies.

A gifted Jewish educator, she taught at the Central Jewish Institute, served as a director of Camp Modin, Maine, during a period of 20 years, and assisted her husband. Dr. Albert P. Schoolman, in developing Cejwin Camps at Port Jervis, N.Y. as an effective ally of the Jewish school system in this country. She was a member of the Society for the Advancement of Judaism and of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation.

A life-long Zionist, Mrs. Schoolman took her two young daughters to Palestine for extended visits and schooling as early as 1931 and again in 1937-38. In America she chaired important committees of Hadassah. In 1947 she received the Outstanding Alumni Award of the Teachers Institute. The “State of Israel Fighters Award” conferred by the Ministry of Defense in 1969 for services rendered prior to the establishment of the State memorialized Mrs. Schoolman’s contribution as a non-Israeli to the rescue and rehabilitation of Jewish youth.

From 1947 to 1953 she served as co-chairman with Moshe Kol, chairman of the Youth Aliya Management Committee, helping Youth Aliya to cope with the enormous task of healing and teaching hundreds of young survivors of European extermination camps and Oriental ghettos. Fluent in Hebrew, she was the first American Jewish woman chosen to chair international commissions of the Actions Committee and World Zionist Congress when they met in 1960 and 1964 in Jerusalem.

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