Dr. Boris D. Bogen, internationally known for his work in Jewish social service, executive secretary of the Independent Order B’nai B’rith, died suddenly yesterday while attending a family reunion at Arcadia City, Los Angeles suburb. He was sixty years old. Funeral services will be held here Wednesday afternoon at 2. P. M. Henry Monsky, chairman of the Wider Scope Committee of the J.O.B.B., with a committee of District 4, is taking charge of the funeral arrangements.
The outstanding accomplishment of a long career in social service, and for which he was known in Europe and America, was his work as director of the relief activities of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee in Europe during the World War. He organized the distribution of food among the starving Jewish population of Poland and was known as the Herbert Hoover of Poland. His appointment to direct the J. D. C. work followed extensive activity in the Committee’s work in Russia, Poland and the Ukraine.
Dr. Bogen occupied many leading positions in various charitable organizations during forty years of service for public causes. At the sessions of (Continued on Page 3) (Continued from Page 1)
His first post in 1894 was as instructor in the Baron de Hirsch Trade School, New York. In 1896 he became a teacher in the Hebrew Technical Institute and in 1900 was named principal of the Baron de Hirsch Agricultural School at Woodbine, N. J.
It was during his activities there that he succeeded in persuading the New Jersey State Legislature to recognize Woodbine as a municipality. Four years later, he was named Executive Director of the Federation of Jewish Charities of Cincinnati. Subsequently he was field secretary of the National Conference of Jewish Social Service, until his entry into the J.D.C. relief work in 1917.
On his return to America in 1924 he became Executive Director of the Los Angeles Federation of Jewish Charities, where he served for three years before assuming the post of Executive Secretary of the Independent Order B’nai B’rith.
The degree of Doctor of Hebrew Law was conferred upon Dr. Bogen three years ago by the Hebrew Union College in recognition of his social service work.
Dr. Bogen was born in Russia in 1869, the son of David and Leah Bogen. His parents came to the United States when he was still a child. He attended the University of New York, majoring in pedagogy. In 1890 he married Miss Elizabeth Scholtz. Dr. Bogen is survived by his widow and six children.
Felix M. Warburg, Chairman of the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, in a statement declared: “It seems incredible that his wonderfully useful life has come to such an untimely close. There were so many things he wanted to do. I feel his going as the sad loss of one of my warmest personal friends. Jewry is deprived of one of the most courageous, self-sacrificing and understanding pioneers not only in organized charity, but in the relief work in which he achieved such extraordinary success. He was an inspiration to many, and surely to me. We will miss his ever cheerful counsel and friendship.”
A statement issued by the Joint Distribution Committee read: “The officers and members of the Joint Distribution Committee learn with profound grief of the sudden death of our good friend and associate, Dr. Bogen who, since the inception of our relief activities abroad and as one of the pioneers of this work, has given so liberally of himself to the cause of our unfortunate people abroad. His rare courage and devotion and self-sacrificing during the most difficult and hazardous era of the activities of this Committee constitute an outstanding record in the history of American Jewry’s relief achievements overseas.
“His loss will be mourned not only by his co-workers in the Joint Distribution Committee, but also by the countless sufferers both here and abroad, towards whose succor and relief he devoted himself so unselfishly. A distinguished social worker, a man of great vision and force, his memory will live among all of us whose privilege it was to know him and to be associated with him in the many years of his service among his people.”
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.